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Spiked! A DIY for you!

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Raise your hand if you want a life-size cactus made out of succulents and moss at your wedding!!  You’d be surprised that this request has come more than once after Reid and Erin popularized the living cactus at their wedding last year and the talented Andrea Soorikian made their vision a reality with the original “Curtis the Cactus”.  This time, I tried my hand at constructing a lil’ Saguaro of my own.  I loved creating it so much, I wanted to show you how!

To make your own (almost) 4 feet tall cactus, here’s what you’ll need:

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One thing you should know about me, I hate measuring, reading directions or anything that will make your life easier.  So for me to record actual measurements, is a really big deal. You’re welcome.  Also, I purchased 3/4″ PVC pipe and just stood in the hardware store fumbling all the fittings, making sure they fit.  I also made sure the PVC fit snugly into the metal pipe base.  Also, with a little elbow grease and the wonderful help of my assistant, Sarah, we were able to cut the PVC pipe into the proper sizes with a regular ol’ hand saw…forgot to draw that.

 

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I found all of these moss-y, foam-y goodies at Hobby Lobby.  The moss is awesome-it comes on a thin, plastic grid that can easily be cut with scissors and molded however you want.

 

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Now, some of you may know that I start every wedding season with a succulent farm.  By the end of the season, it has grown, been used for multiple weddings and I am usually sad that I can’t drag every single one of them in for the winter.  Every time I do, the poor little things get leggy and sad and there’s not much hope for them by the spring.  So, that said, this project was absolutely perfect to use up my 250+ succulents for their last hoo-rah!

 

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So, once you’ve got your PVC pieces cut, as you begin to assemble, stab the foam disks and stack them as you go, securing the PVC fitting with epoxy once the foam is on and the pieces attached.  The parts that go around the elbows and tee fittings were done afterwards by wiring separate pieces.  Then, begin the very satisfying moss wrap.  The moss ribbon is fantastic for the corners and tops of the cactus and the moss sheet easily goes around the base and secured with moss pins.

 

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Now, time for a little personality.  I gave my cactus some cute racer stripes to define where his spikes would go with the brightly colored Spanish moss….yes, I think it’s a “He.”

 

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Then I prepped all of my succulents.  The larger ones I put onto toothpicks (unpainted) and the smaller ones I just used a thin gauge wire.  They were easily stuck into the foam, through the moss.

 

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Once all the succulents were in place….dang it took a LOT!  I put the painted toothpicks in clusters of 3-4 along the moss stripes.  The finishing touch were the paper “flower” blooms placed on top of on the arms. Que cute, no?  I just love this little guy!  He is going on the center of the place card display for this weekend’s wedding.  It is a surprise for the bride and I think she is just going to pee her pants, it’s so cute!

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Erin and Reid featured on Junebug Weddings!

I’m thrilled to share that Erin and Reid’s romantic cowboy wedding is featured on Junebug weddings.  I just adored working with this couple; they are two of the coolest, most sincere and loving people.  Kitty and Craig of  Twin Lens documented their very special day so beautifully and I can always count on them for photos that give me butterflies.

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One of my favorite projects to create for them was a pair of  portraits that we set above the mantle for their reception at the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado.  They brought a personal and rustic flair to the party.  Their wedding also sported a life size cactus made entirely out of succulents!  Reid came up with this amazing idea for the entry table and the talented Andrea Soorikian made his vision come to life!  Click HERE to see the entire feature on Junebug Weddings.  You’ll be glad you did!

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ERIN & REID

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Believe it or not it was pouring rain ALL day.  We lucked out and by the time guests arrived, the clouds parted and gave us the most beautiful poolside ceremony.  The cactus was Reid’s idea and our florist, Andrea Soorikian made his vision come to life…out of succulents!  Dinner took place among the glow of hundreds of candles; it was breathtaking! Reid’s mother commissioned me to paint portraits of Reid and Erin in my funky “gouache on Kraft paper” style.  All of the tables were named after old Westerns.  Reid’s father has been collecting vintage movie posters and we were able to raid his extensive collection. One of my favorite details was the cake topper that Erin found on eBay- vintage salt and pepper shakers!

Photography~ Twin Lens / Save the Dates, Invitations, Programs, Place cards and Menus,~ Urbanic Paper Boutique / Make-up~ Monica Stark / Hair~ Debi Bragg / Bride’s Dress~ Melissa Sweet / Ceremony Location~ Private Home / Ceremony Rentals ~ Classic Party Rentals / Ceremony/Cocktail Catering~ Marja Custom Catering / Floral Design~ Andrea Soorikian Design / Reception Location~ Four Seasons Rancho Encantado Santa Fe, NM/ Lighting Design~ Quick Beam / Cake topper~ Vintage, Ebay / Carrot Cake~ Vinaigrette

 

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