I don't know about you, but I'm trying to incorporate more plants into my home décor, with an emphasis on low-maintenance flora. A great way to add some green to your home without a lot of upkeep is getting a few air plants. I used the Tillandsia ionantha and Tillandsia albida varieties, which you can purchase at specialty gardening stores. While you're at it, you can whip up this simple, modern plant hanger to beautify your space.
• Paper straws, about 6
• Baker's twine
• Wooden beads (I used 12mm round beads, but you could also use a smaller size)
• Small to medium-sized air plants
• Scissors / Acto knife
• Optional: Large-eye sewing needle to assist with threading
1. Cut your straws into:
• Four 1¼" sections (we'll call these As)
• Four 1¾" sections (Bs)
• Four 4" sections (Cs)
Tip: Cut the Cs first, so you can use the rest of the straws for the smaller sections. This way, you can get away with using just four straws. I used an X-Acto knife like a tiny saw to cut them, so I wouldn't squish the straw.
2. Now take the B sections and cut the ends at 45-degree angles in opposite directions.
3. Cut the baker's twine into two lengths of 18" and one length of 12".
4. Take one 18" length of baker's twine and thread an A, then a wooden bead, and then another A.
5. Now thread a B onto one side of this, and thread the opposite side of the twine through the same B in the other direction.
6. Thread a C on either side of the B straw. Pull the ends taut, and double-knot the twine together to close the loop.
7. Take the other 18" of twine and thread through the wooden bead. Repeat steps four through six to create the other side of the plant holder.
8. Double-knot the tops of the two loops together.
9. Take the 12" length of twine and thread one B section and then thread through the B section of one side of the plant holder. Then thread the last B section onto the twine. Thread through the other side of the plant holder to create a square out of the Bs. Double-knot the loose ends to complete the plant holder.
10. Trim the ends of the knots down to about an inch, and tuck them into the straws to conceal.
11. Tie a long length of thread to the top of the plant holder to hang in a sunny spot to display the air plants.
12. Add an air plant, and enjoy your handiwork!
Air plants need a little water now and then, so soak them in water for about 20 minutes every two weeks or so. Make sure to give them a good shake afterward to remove excess water. Also let them dry out a little before putting them back in your new plant hanger, as water will cause the straws to disintegrate.
Camela Guevara is an artist and seamstress in Charleston, S.C. She is the Production manager at CrewLaLa, a dog collar company, as well as a co-founder and owner of Charleston Supported Art, a platform to connect emerging and established artists and collectors based on the agricultural model of community supported agriculture. Check out her website at camelaguevara.com.