Old Lady Crafting


Before- Ugly Ant Highrise

I’ve been letting the creative juices flow pretty heavy these days planning for my son’s 2nd birthday party. I had a bit of an overflow of creativity and repurposed an old birdbath that’s been an eye sore in the back yard since we moved in. We bought our 1950’s California ranch home from a sweet old woman who had lived here from when it was built to when she passed away at 100 years old. (No ghosts here, she passed away outside of the home). Because I love the design aesthetics of the time and many things in the home were in great shape we were able to keep many things original. This birdbath however was ugly and has been hiding behind an overgrown ornamental bush. It’s usually filled with dead leaves and probably mosquito larva so it was time to re-use and re-purpose.

I took it apart and rolled it out into the grass so I could spray paint it better. The center of the stem was evidently home to about 1000 small black ants, which I surprised and then promptly murdered. I then placed the top back on (no easy task as the whole thing appears to be made of concrete) and haphazardly began spraying it black.


Ant Free Matte Black

It didn’t need to be perfect just needed to cover most of the weird silver/yellow/terracotta undertones. Black was just one of my colors I had on hand, I could’ve gotten really crafty and tried a patina looking terracotta or a bright summer color but I had to make a choice between black and white from the garage and frankly the green succulents pop better with black. So simple, matte black it is.

After it dried overnight, I rolled it over in two pieces to a section of the yard that doesn’t get much water and the grass there is rather sad. It is the perfect spot for a succulent planter to take up residence sans ants. First I laid down some rocks to facilitate drainage, and then I filled the top with dirt and piled it on high toward the center making a mound so there would be some height definition to the arrangement. Next I took clippings from succulents around my yard and just started filling up the space. Finally a small drink of water and voila! A brown spot in my yard is now a source of color and the sweet old (dead) lady’s possessions live on with new life.


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