Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Make It! Number 2 Pencil Vase

Bless me Internet, for I have sinned. It's been 10 days since I last blogged.

When it rains it pours around here. My dislocated pinky is still trying to heal. Most of the day - I would say about 22 hours of it, I'm in a curved metal finger brace, wrapped tightly with tape. I take the brace off for a few hours a day to do necessities, like oh...I don't know, bathe. I also ice my pinky during this time while my brain tries valiantly to literally bend my pinky to its will. So far, my brain is unsuccessful. My pinky remains stubbornly straight, refusing to bend at all at the second nuckle. I'm beginning to worry that it may be permanently straightened.

To top of my ridiculous hand injury, I decided last Tuesday to catch a case of the preschool bug. By Friday I was completely out of commission. My husband took my son and picked him up from preschool on Friday. And then, in an effort to allow me to continue to sleep and rest quietly, he took my son into work with him. I was literally in bed all weekend long feeling as badly as I did last year when I came down with a case of H1N1. I believe I'm finally turning for the better. It can't come soon enough, as I have much to do. Such as these little teacher appreciation gifts for my son's Montessori preschool teachers.

Following my inspiration from my twig vase here, I decided to make a similar vase with yellow #2 pencils. The photos were taken by my husband because I don't have the manual dexterity to operate our large DSLR yet.

You'll need:
#2 pencils
a recycled glass jar
hot glue and glue gun

Gather up your supplies:

We chose a glass jar over a tin or aluminum jar to make sure our teachers wouldn't experience rust issues when filling their vases with water.

Using your glue gun, begin by placing a line of hot glue along one side of a pencil. Press the pencil firmly against your selected jar and apply steady pressure to make sure it stays in place. You'll need to watch carefully to make sure your pencils are all facing the same direction and to make sure they are completely upright. It's very easy for them to start listing a bit to the right or left, making the last few pencils difficult to place.

Just in case you're curious, the jar in this photo is clean. The white stuff on the outside of it is leftover gummy from the old pickled asparagus sticker that was once on it.

Add pencils all the way around your glass jar. When you're done, tie a sweet ribbon around the outside and fill your vase with flowers. Our teachers will be receiving fresh cut flowers in their vases, but for the purposes of these pictures we used some of our coffee filter flowers.

I think these will make the perfect teacher appreciation gifts. It's a simple project that just about anybody could do - even me with a gimpy hand and a case of the flu.

Simple Mama


  1. So sorry you've been so ill and your pinky still has a stiffy ;-). Love these vases!

  2. LOL! Pinky has a stiffy. Totally using that.

  3. Those are so cute and would make great teacher gifts. I love your crafts.

  4. So happy you are on the mend! I love these vases! They are a perfect gift for a teacher!

  5. Very cute! I'm glad you're on the mend now.

  6. I've been seeing these vases more and more and I'm loving them! Thanks for the tutorial. Hope you're all better soon!

  7. Now I know what the kids will be giving their teachers at the end of the year parties!


  8. This is lovely! I think I'll just make one for myself since my daughter isn't in school yet and I consider myself her teacher for now! :)

    New follower! Love your blog!

  9. Wow,it looks awsome,great idea

  10. I'm a kindergarten teacher and I think this is such a cute idea; very creative.

  11. You need to share a tutorial for those flowers, because they are the cutest coffee filter flowers ever!

  12. Tried making this the other day but the hot glue dried on the pencil before I could place it on the vase. Any tricks to get it to stick??

  13. Hi Kelly,

    I'm not sure, actually. I didn't run into that problem, but I tend to work pretty quickly with hot glue - mostly because I use it almost every day with items for my Etsy store. Perhaps you could switch to a different type of glue? Elmers? I'm not much help here, perhaps one of my readers can chime in with their suggestions.

  14. Just wanted to update you I was able to get the pencils to stick after buying a new hot glue gun. Alsom large glue dots work very well too! Can't wait to give to my daughter's teachers next week!!!!!