diy project: kate’s recycled objet d’art

this is the last installment in the paint projects. over the years of apartment dwelling, i have amassed a fairly large collection of house paints, some of which i’ve hardly used. i decided to create some quick “objet d’art” with a few random knick knacks lying around. this is an easy way to create a little sculpture collection out of thrift shop finds; dipping them all in the same color can create a unified statement. or if you want them to be more functional, you can fill them with sand or rocks and use them as paperwieghts or bookends. happy crafting! -kate

CLICK HERE for the full project instructions after the jump!


what you’ll need:
1. objects (wood and plastics work best)
2. can of interior latex paint (semi gloss or matte is good, not high gloss)
3. plastic bag or saran wrap for a drying surface
4. hair dryer
5. pliers
6. clear sealant spray (look for this at craft stores or hardware stores)
7. putty or spackle (optional)
8. exacto blade (optional)
9. sand (optional)

1. if you are just dipping the item, skip to step 5.

2. if want your item to be filled with something and it doesn’t have a hole, cut out a small hole that you can pour the sand through with an exacto blade (the object needs to be made of something you can cut and be hollow for you to do this).

3. fill the item with sand and turn upside down. fill in the hole with putty or spackle. keep it turned upside down while the spackle dries.

4. make sure the sand will not fall out when you turn it back over.

5. mix your can of paint to make sure it is even.

6. grip the item from the best dipping point with the pliers. i dipped all of mine bottom first so the paint can drip off the bottom.


7. dip the item completely until the top is submerged, then pull back out and hold over the can. let the excess paint drip off for a long time. you can jiggle it a little to get more paint to come off. keep holding it and let the drips keep falling until there are barely any drips left.

8. place item bottom down onto a piece of plastic or a flattened zip lock bag.

6. let dry for at least 24 hours, occasionally blowing it with a hair dryer on low for several minutes. after the top is dry to the touch, move the item carefully to a clean spot on the plastic and continue to let it dry.

7. when the item is completely dry, spray it with an even coat of sealant. let the sealant dry for a few hours.



What a great idea. I wonder, though, whether you could achieve a similar look with several coats of spray paint, or if the house paint provides a thicker, more “sculptural” texture/look?


Oh come on now, you *know* the next logical question is “WHERE DID YOU GET THAT AMAZING WALLPAPER?”


you’ve got it exactly right. the reason i used the dipping process was to make it look like it was made of something else, like a ceramic object. you can’t really achieve this look with spray paint, or at least i have not been able to so far… but both processes create their own interesting look! -kate

Mac MGivens

I think this is a super idea! You could also use car paint in an airbrush unit. It is a much more durable type of paint, and goes on much smoother then out of the can spray paint. Oh! And by the way: The wallpaper is phenom!


i have so much stuff lying around that could be dipped in paint. i have tried this will spray paint, but apparently i just don’t have that skill.


i just bought that backdrop paper and used it on a diy coffee table renovation project! love it!

Miss B.

This is fun! Love this idea, I am a horrible dipper though, maybe I should try the jiggle, I ma always left with drip marks…

Tales from a Tiny Apartment

I too was loving on the paper in the background so much that by the time I read the post and saw the honey bear it actually surprised me. This is such a great idea. I must have at least five cans of left over paint below the sink at this very moment. Now to figure out what to dip…



wow!!! this is so cool! I especially love the honey bear bottle. I’m already thinking what objects I can do this too. It’s like a DIY for incredibly popular and very expensive Jonathan Adler porcelain figures. This would be a great thing to do with some childhood keepsakes. If you took a few of your childs favorite wooden and plastic toys and did this you could display them. I think it would look great. Thanks for sharing this fun project.


I love the Anti 9 to 5 Guide. It’s one of the best reads. Very inspirational!


I love the metal kitchen chairs! Can you tell me where I can find 4 of them? Thanks for sharing!


The honey bear bottle looked ceramic in the photo. Very spiffy indeed.