Boot Upcycle Mother’s Day Gift (to Myself. hah!)

I’ve been doing crafts with things “normal” people would throw away for ever since I can remember. Little coffee straws would become Barbie toilet paper rolls (plus tissue strips), our military family’s moving boxes would become multilevel doll houses, and “Aim” toothpaste tubes would morph into bracelets with my nickname on them. That’s why it’s hard for me to part with stuff sometimes: the potential!

When I became a mom, another thing besides potential pulled at my heartstrings when it came time to call it quits…sentimental attachments, especially to my kids’ shoes. They’re just such a reminder of their fast growth! Since I can’t keep them little, I kind of want to keep their shoes. But with limited storage, and besides the fact that that would be kind of weird and hoarderish, I can’t do that. So I pass them on to friends.

But what do I do with their cracked up rainboots? Nobody can use them anymore and it feels so wrong to toss them. Well, I love plants, especially perennials, and gardening is one of my favorite stress-relief methods. So naturally I wanted to put plants in these wellies, as they’re known in Europe! If you’d prefer to watch the process upcycling these boots (which I recommend because I give some tips and info,) click here, otherwise read on.

First I drilled holes in the bottom of all the boots. For the matching set I pinned them together in the middle for better stability. Next, to further insure decent drainage and also to provide weight to the bottom should the plants I planned to plant in them become top-heavy, I put a layer of sand 1 inch thick in the bottom. Then I loaded them with a few scoops of soil and began to layer in the plants. Tallest plants in the back. In my garden I pretty much have perennials because they are cheaply discounted at the end of the growing season (Aug.-Sept.) or I have gotten them from my mom’s garden, they multiply and divide nicely, and I don’t have to reinvest in my flower beds every year.

I chose echinacea (purple coneflower), bee balm, mums, two kinds of sedum (one taller and sculptural and one drapey), some vinca (periwinkle), and some ajuga. Maybe one or two others–check the video if you want to know what they look like.

Here is the outcome! I love them. I put the single boot on that crook of the mailbox that looked boring and I thought needed some whimsy.

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