Bleach and I are now officially besties!
Dear Creative Friends…..
I’ve had this HUGE bottle of bleach in the back of my laundry cupboard for ages-And yes, I DO know bleach has real life uses like cleaning grout and stuff, but it was taking up precious space and I couldn’t help wondering if I could use it for something crafty…….
Anyway……I’ve also had these pine cones for a while……
……. and clearly they could do with a good bleaching, so I decided to have a crack at it!
In case you also want to have a crack, this is what you will need:
- A container big enough to hold your cones
- Cones (obviously!)
- Bleach- just the usual household stuff- mine even was a bit lemony and soapy but this didn’t seem to matter
- A plate or something to hold the cones in the solution
- Tongs to fish the cones out of the beach when they’re finished
- Tray lined with paper towel to dry the cones on
- No- you don’t need an oven!
And this is how to do it:
- Mix 3 parts bleach to 1 part water (but this was a guess- I doubt you need to be so precise)
- Dunk the cones and hold them down with the plate
- Take cones out of the bleach
- Rinse them really well under running water.
- Put them on the paper lined tray to dry
Well YES it basically is, but I did learn a few things along the way- some things obvious….. some not so much. Some safety things also cropped up when my rusty science brain started creaking away.
- Obvious: Do this outside
- Obvious: Wear old clothes- it’s bleach for goodness sake!
- Obvious: Wear gloves- ditto
- Not so obvious: It takes longer than you think- Beaching for 48 hours is good- 72 hours is better- Drying takes several days.
- Not so obvious: The cones close up when they soak. DO NOT GIVE UP WHEN YOU SEE THIS HAPPEN. I am happy to report they happily open up again when they dry.
- Maybe obvious- The cones float, so you need to plonk a plate or something on them to keep them dunked in the bleach.
- Probably Obvious: Whatever idea you think of, it’s already been done by someone on the internet! Amazing- I’d never thought of bleaching cones before but when I checked the craft universe- Yep-ALL OVER IT!
And most importantly…..Think “Safety before Creativity”
- Bleach is a dangerous liquid but looks just like water. PUT A LID ON YOUR BUCKET so kids and pets don’t harm themselves while your bleach brew works its magic
- Please do not (as is recommended all over the internet) DRY or FINISH DRYING your cones in the oven. To all of you impatient folk, NEVER EVER put wet cones into the oven straight out of the brew. Yes- heating bleach gives off chlorine gas- IT WILL CHOKE YOU or worse!
- It’s worth reading the italics above once more- really!
The cones don’t bleach totally white- they look more like aged driftwood- but, I gotta admit, they look pretty awesome!
This was so successful- I couldn’t help wondering what else I could bleach……
Check out the before and after pics of our bottle brush trees… Green to White(ish) in under 3 minutes! Sensational!
Anyway – here are the finished cones and trees, sitting happily together, waiting for my mantle display to be finished.
I’m very happy- I’m actually dancing inside! I LOVE it when a good plan comes together.
Wonder what DYING them would be like????
By the way…..Did anyone notice- there’s still 20% off all web purchases at the moment? All you have to do is use the code “MERRYCHRISTMAS” at checkout to claim your discount.
Have a great week eveyone,