DIY Furniture & Design

These 10 Everyday Items Create Unbelievable Concrete Designs

Want to make your own concrete decor and furnishings but have no idea how to get started? Sure, you can buy concrete-specific molds from the hardware store, but you can skip the commute—and start and finish your project sooner—if you cast your creations in materials you already have on hand. And, believe it or not, there's a bevy of household materials under your roof that can serve as concrete molds for sleek tables and chairs, cool garden planters, dazzling light fixtures, and much more. If you have milk cartons, Legos, or any number of other mundane materials handy, grab them—and a bag of Quikrete concrete mix—to start forging fun and functional accents for every living space! This content has been brought to you by Quikrete. Its facts and opinions are those of

We may earn revenue from the products available on this page and participate in affiliate programs. Learn More ›

Plastic Patio Furniture

Durable and inexpensive, plastic is a household hero, used for everything from decking to patio furniture. But did you know that plastic also works as an in-a-pinch mold for a stylish seating option? As this project tutorial demonstrates, you can transform bargain seating into a mold that can make as many luxe-looking concrete chaises as you’d like. Simply use duct tape to seal holes in the plastic chair, then fill the base of the upturned chair with Quikrete 5000. The lightweight construction of the plastic chair makes the unveiling nearly effortless, and the results are as stunning as they are long-lasting.

Laminate Cabinets

Thanks to its particleboard construction and laminate veneer, laminate cabinetry is rugged enough to be repurposed into artful accents indoors and out, and strong enough to hold moist concrete mix while it cures. In this memorable makeover, laminate cabinets and a stack of rigid insulation sheets mold Quikrete 5000 into a whimsical planter box with an integrated spout that allows the concrete container to drain easily.

Plastic Bowls

When you’re ready to retire old bowls from kitchen duty, dust them off and cast them in concrete to create a luminous mod-art lamp. Just follow the directions to create this dazzling transformation An old glass jar lets the light shine through, and the wide mouth of the bowls makes it easy to spoon the Quikrete Countertop Mix into the mold, vibrate out the bubbles, and achieve an even surface—no troweling or leveling the concrete required. Plus, once cured the concrete forms pop out with relative ease. Then, just drop in a corded light socket and flip the switch to reveal the finished radiance!

Beverage Bottles

When crafting a container to show off your favorite florals, look no further than the fridge or recycling bin for inspiration. All those humble, discarded plastic or glass bottles with caps are perfect for making shapely vases. How you cast the concrete depends on the bottle’s material (see the video tutorial for detailed instructions), but once the Quikrete 5000 inside cures, it readily separates from plastic or glass with help from a box cutter or hammer.


Known more for their storage capacity than their good looks, buckets are used in practically every household to stash liquids ranging from paint to cleaning solvents. But if you can see beyond the humdrum exterior of a bucket to its deep basin and modern cylindrical shape, you’ll find that its plastic interior offers the perfect starting spot for your next concrete project. Following this tutorial, fill an empty bucket with a short layer of Quikrete 5000, then insert three wooden dowels to create a modern-meets-rustic three-legged stool that you can hold at the ready to seat last-minute company.


You never outgrow Legos! You can even stack up those little plastic bricks to build a custom mold (or two, in the case of these nesting tables) for just about any structure you can envision using Quikrete Countertop Mix. Plus, the bricks’ slick finish ensures a smooth surface once the concrete has cured. When you remove the Legos from the concrete, you’ll find playful traces of the bricks’ texture artfully incorporated into your design. Best of all, you can use the same bricks to make mold after mold—just run them through the washing machine in a delicates bag when you’re done.

Milk Cartons

Easy to cut yet sturdy enough to hold concrete in a rectangular form as it cures, an empty milk carton offers huge potential as a concrete mold. Look how naturally the shape lends itself to a modern desk lamp. To achieve this low-cost luminary all it takes is nesting another commonly upcycled item—a plastic bottle—inside the carton, then pouring Quikrete 5000 into the space between the bottle and carton. A power drill and your own two hands can take it from there. Once the concrete’s dry, drill holes in the sides of the lamp, then wire in a bulb to create a subtle light source to brighten up any dark corner of the home.

PVC Tubes

Already a humble hero in everyday plumbing, PVC pipe proves equally functional for casting concrete. PVC’s just perfect for constructing this wine rack, thanks to its varying sizes and water resistance. Forge an outer mold from wood and tape, then center lengths of three-inch-diameter PVC pipe inside to create snug little nests for wine bottles. Fill the mold with Quikrete Concrete Mix, and just three days later you can paint the cured rack to match your interior decor.

Light Bulbs via ClenseYourPallet

The low cost, striking shape, and smooth glass surface of light bulbs makes these ordinary supplies prime picking for concrete molds. To unleash their creative spark, first use a pair of needle nose pliers to break the insulators enclosing the metal tip of the bulbs. Thoroughly clean the emptied bulbs with a lint-free cloth dipped in vinegar or water, then mix and funnel Quikrete Sand/Topping Mix into it. Once cured, carefully break the bulb and unveil your concrete casting. While the pear shapes easily make for stylish paperweights, upgrading their function is as simple as inserting a heavy, three-inch-long screw into each light bulb’s neck during the curing process to create a set of sturdy concrete wall hooks.

Plastic Pumpkins

As you’ve seen in the previous projects, when you cast concrete in a hollow plastic accent, the mix takes on the shape of the original. So, think outside the box the next time you’re walking the aisles at the dollar store! Something as simple as a plastic pumpkin could be your next concrete mold. Because plastic pumpkins already have the jack-o’-lantern face embossed on their surface, you don’t have to carve anything—you can create a smiling pumpkin simply by pouring Quikrete concrete mix directly into the plastic bucket. Press a bowl into the top while the concrete cures to craft a hardy pumpkin planter or candy dish.