Create with Concrete
Nothing beats the ho-hum blues like creative gratification—especially if the results of your crafty efforts yield beautiful, durable, and useful décor. So if you and your family members are tired of pastimes like jigsaw puzzles and paint-by-numbers kits, why not step up your game with the fun and easy projects here, all of which rely on one simple ingredient: concrete! That’s right, the same material professional builders use has become on-trend for DIYers—beginners included. In fact, you can make any of the seven fun and functional pieces here with inexpensive Quikrete concrete plus basic tools and supplies you no doubt already have at home. Yep, concrete is hard, but mixing it up and making spectacular stuff out of it is easy.
Whole Lotta Love
All you need is love—plus a handful of magnets, a silicone mold or ice cube tray, and Quikrete to craft heartfelt pieces for your fridge. Add a small amount of Quikrete Quick-Setting Cement to a few inches of water in a bucket or plastic deli container, stirring with a stick until a thick slurry forms. Fill ice cube trays nearly to the top, tapping gently to ensure the concrete settles throughout the mold. Center one magnet in each heart without submerging completely and, when set, pop ’em out. Leave them plain or paint them for an extra touch. And if hearts aren’t your style, make fridge magnets shaped like stars, smiley faces, whatever suits your fancy.
quikrete.com via Sarah Freeman
Delicate glass and ceramic vases topple and break at the slightest bump, but sturdy concrete versions remain upright, and they add modern flair to your décor. Cut the bottom off of a plastic bottle, and then drill a hole in the cap, inserting a test tube or pen through it. Screw the cap/tube combo back on the bottle and invert the bottle inside a jar to hold it steady. Mix up some Quikrete Countertop Mix with water and pour into the mold. Let cure, remove the bottle with a utility knife, and trim or sand if necessary. You can go here for a full video tutorial.
Stop, Hammer Time
Got an open door policy around your house? Keep it that way in style! A rusty hammer way past its prime gets a new lease on life as the handle for a unique door stop. To make one for yourself, blend Quikrete Sand/Topping Mix and water in a bucket to a batter-like consistency, pour it in a makeshift plastic mold (such as an old pitcher or a container from the recycle bin), and insert the hammer so that the business end sticks up from the center. When the concrete cures, cut off the mold with a utility knife and your a-door-able artwork is ready.
quikrete.com via Gail Wilson
Families are preparing meals together more than ever, but as one crafty home cook discovered, finding the perfect place to prop a cell phone for displaying recipes was a challenge. The solution? This fun phone stand. Simply mix up a small batch of Quikrete Countertop Mix, pour it into an old work glove, and arrange the glove so that it sits securely and the fingers can hold the phone. When set, simply strip off the glove. Chances are you’ll use this helpmate all over the house to stream videos, follow tutorials, read stories to your kids, you name it.
quikrete.com via Catie Chiro
Concrete is cool—literally. Because the material boasts low thermal conductivity, it can keep beverages at the ideal temperature, just like an ice pack. This caddy is made from Quikrete Fast-Setting Concrete Mix, plus a base and handle fashioned from salvaged plywood.
quikrete.com via Ed Trapper and Rob Norton
See everyone’s favorite treat in a whole new light. Make a mold (using quick cast compound) of a plastic ice cream cone or any other flat-bottomed item that tickles your aesthetic. Mix up a batch of Quikrete Quick-Setting Cement, pour it into the mold, and tap to banish bubbles. Insert a PVC cap—first making sure your candle will fit in the cap—into the center of the concrete and let it set. When cured, pop the candle holders out of the mold, sand any rough spots if needed, and paint if desired.
quikrete.com via Rebecca Celhar
A crafty DIYer invented this pretty tough take on home décor when she had some concrete left over from another project. She didn’t want the Quikrete Portland Cement to go to waste, so she grabbed some inexpensive fake flowers that were lying around, dipped them into the slurry, and let them dry. For added flair, paint the tips of petals. The everlasting blossoms make lovely accents to a table, mantelpiece, anywhere!
quikrete.com via Anika Gandhi
If you have the money to hire a handyman for every household woe, go ahead. But if you want to hang on to your cash and exercise some self-sufficiency, check out these clever products that solve a million and one little problems around the house. Go now!