Hey friends! I know it’s been a long time. I hope you haven’t forgotten me! I decided to bring this blog back with a post I’m hoping you guys will like and find helpful. Today’s post is a DIY for some window planter boxes my husband and I just made for our house. Who doesn’t love a little DIY? Best part, the supplies for the three boxes we built only cost us $15! If you add in the cost of greenery and foam we are still under $70 of all three window boxes which is still a great price for window boxes that will look fresh all season.
First up a little before picture of the area of the house where I wanted to add the planters.
Boring right? These windows are right above our garage and face the street. The boards on the bottom of the windows were starting to look a little rough and while we were talking of replacing them I thought why not window boxes? Since they were going to be on the front of the house and on the second story I needed them to look good and be very low maintenance. We recently made a new house number planter box and loved the way the wood we used looked on the house so we figured that it would be perfect to use for these window boxes.
The size of our window boxes were determines by the size of the wood under the windows. Those are the measurements I will be using in this DIY. Of course you can edit these sizes to make them fit your needs. Our boxes ended up being 36″ wide, 6″ tall, and 6″ deep. Also, we needed three boxes for our windows so the supply list provided below is for all three boxes. To make one box you would only need two fence pickets. The rest of the supplies would stay the same. Here is the list of supplies we used.
- 6- 11/16in. x 6in. x6ft. Fence Picket
- Titebond III Ultimate Wood Glue
- 1 1/4″ 18 Gauge Brad Nails
- Olympic WaterGuard Wood Sealer(optional)
- Table saw or any saw to cut straight lines
- Brad nailer
- Compressor(needed for brad nailer)
- Drill with 1/2″ spade bit or twist bit
First, we made our cuts on the fence pickets. We cut:
- 3 pieces @ 36″ long for the fronts
- 6 pieces @ 6″ long for the ends
- 6 pieces @ 34 3/4″ long for the bottom and back
Then we took three of the 34 3/4″ pieces and cut the width of the board down by 5/8″ so that we had three boards measuring 34 3/4″long x 5 3/8″ wide. These narrower pieces are the pieces we will be using for the base of the boxes.
Next we connected the base and the back pieces of our boxes. We used the edge of our workbench to line up the two pieces. We started with laying the 34 3/4″ back piece on the workbench so that it hung slightly over the edge of the bench. Then we put a line of glue along the cut edge of the bottom piece.
We put the glued edge against the overhanging edge of the back piece and squared up the two pieces against the workbench edge. Then we clamped the two pieces together to hold them while we nailed them.
We used a brad nailer for this project because the nails are small so you don’t see the tops once you shoot them into the wood. It’s so much easier than hammering nails and I’m all about easy. You could use a regular hammer and nails if you don’t have a compressor and nailer. You could also just use the wood glue and leave the pieces clamped longer between steps. We used 1 1/4″ brad nails so that they are long enough to make it all the way through the first piece of wood and most the way through the second.
Next we removed the clamps and flipped the two pieces over so the bottom side was sitting on the workbench. We took a 6″ end piece and applied wood glue to two of the edges in an L shape as shown.
Then we placed the glued edges against one of the ends of the piece we just assembled and nailed the pieces together. It may help to clamp the base to the workbench so you don’t have any movement while you are nailing.
We repeated this process with the other end piece. Now we were ready to attach the face of the box. We flipped the assembled piece on its back so the unfinished edges were facing up and ran glue along the unfinished edge.
Then we set the 36″ face piece on top so the edges lined up. We then nailed along all the three edges we just glued. Now we had a fully assembled box.
The next thing we did was drill some holes in the bottom for drainage. We used faux plants in ours so the plants didn’t need drainage. However we didn’t want the boxes holding water from rain or snow since they are going outside. We used a 1/2″ spade bit to make the holes in the bottom of our boxes but you can use a twist bit or really anything to make your holes. We went with three holes spaced out along the bottom of the box. If you use a smaller bit you might want to place more holes.
Last thing we did was coat our boxes with Olympic Watergaurd. We figured since they are attached to the house and exposed to the elements we wanted to try to make them last as long as possible. It was really easy to use. I just brushed it on following the instructions on the container. You really don’t need much for these boxes so a smaller container or even the spray can will work.
We repeated this process for all three boxes. After this the boxes were ready to be hung. I did keep one of the boxes unattached so I could configure the greenery layout but it isn’t necessary. I’m just picky and wanted to make sure the greenery would look just right before I hung them.
To hang the boxes we just screwed through the inside of the back of the box directly into the wood on our house. I did consider using these brackets instead. We didn’t think they were necessary for us since we used faux flowers so the boxes weren’t overly heavy. If you are planting real flowers in your boxes you may consider using the brackets to attach them to your house. The brackets would also make it easier to remove the boxes if you don’t want to keep them up year round.
The next steps are for the faux greenery I added to my boxes. I have not used faux greenery long term outside so I am not an expert on this and have no idea how they will hold up. I have had them up for a week now and it has rained a few times with no damage to the greenery. I did buy greenery during a great sale so at least if they do get ruined I’m not out a bunch of money.
To start my arrangements I used dry floral foam blocks that I bought from the Dollar Tree. You can also get these blocks at Joann’s or Hobby Lobby. The blocks I used were a little less than 8″ long.
Since my boxes were almost 35″ long inside I used three blocks per box. I cut one of the blocks and placed the foam so that the holes I drilled in the box were all exposed. I wanted to make sure there was no problem with drainage.
Next I took my greenery bushes and cut them up so I could space the greens out more evenly. The wire inside the stems can make them hard to cut so I used some pruning shears to cut them. I started with my boxwood stems since I thought they were the bushiest and would make the best base for my arrangement. Then I took the leafy bushes and filled in the holes until I was satisfied with the fullness. It took 3 boxwood bushes and 2 leafy bushes for each of my boxes.
Remember these are outside planter boxes, and in my case going to be on the second story, so no one is going to view them that closely. They just need to look full from further away. I also used faux greenery that was a little more plasticky than I would normally use for indoor use because I knew no one would be up close to them.
I then added some kind of drapey stems to the fronts of the boxes so that they hung over the edge. I cut the bush into individual stems and just kind of stuck them into the foam along the edge until I was happy with the look. I ended up using 3 of these.
After that I was all ready to put my floral arrangements into their boxes. I just set them into the box so that I can easily change them out later. So far I haven’t had any problems with anything falling out but I’m sure if you are concerned about that you can put some velcro or glue down to hold the foam in better.
I’m so happy with how they turned out. You could add flowers in with the greens if you wanted or change the greens to fit the look of your house. It’s a lot of fun to play around with the look. I plan on changing them out seasonally. For storage in between seasons you can take the whole set up, foam and the greenery, and place them into a big storage tote. That way next year all you have to do is take them out, fluff them up, and put them back into your window boxes.
What do you think? If you happen to make these I would love to see them! Tag me on social media so I can see your finished product!