Friday, December 4, 2009

Bleaching Bottle Brush Trees

Have you ever wondered how to get those cool looking cream and colored bottle brush trees. Well I finally tried it this year and it worked!

First of all they come that dark green with the white snow on them and usually a bag full of them. I got a bag of 16--assorted sizes--at Big Lots for 6.99.

This is what I ended up with after bleaching and dyeing. I think they turned out quite pretty!

To bleach your little trees fill a sink about half full or so of water and add a good cup or so of bleach and then pop your trees in. See the dark green one--that was their original color. Let them sit and soak for a long, long time! In fact you'll probably wonder if it's going to even work, but it will. It took my trees each a good 2 hours before they bleached out and sometimes the little white snow won't come off--don't worry about it. You can try and pick it off too.

After the bleaching process was done I then drew up a sink of cold water and added a cup or so of vinegar and rinsed the trees in this. The vinegar will nuetralize the bleach.

The light green tree in the top photo is one I took out part way through bleaching. The pink ones I dyed using Easter egg dye. Just mix up the dye tablet per package instructions--I put mine in a mason jar--then add your tree and shake and voila! A colored tree. And they take the dye quite well, so don't leave them in the dye for very long. Then you can add glitter and baubles if you want.

And that's all there is to creating your own beautiful vintage looking bottle brush trees! See I told you it was easy!


The French Bear said...

Cathy, thanks for showing this, I have tried a few trees and I love it!!! I used dye, which was a little messy but my red trees look wonderful!
Margaret B

Rue said...

Hi Cathy :)

Thank you for the tutorial! Those trees are so cute :)


Pam said...

Oh they are so pretty. Haven't seen packets of these over here, but that's not to say they aren't. Might see if I can find them. Always amazes me how you clever people come up with your brilliant ideas! Bleaching this sort of thing has never occurred to me. :)

Cat Nap Inn Primitives said...

kewl!!! beans..I can't wait to try this!!! thanks for the tutorial...:)

Karen said...

OH I am so glad you told me about your Christmas Carol book as a child. Isn't that fun!! I love it when things like that happen. It is a beautiful book - I found it . . . on our vacation last summer - I think I found it in Colorado. There is a name on the inside - I will go downstairs and check and see if it is you! Wouldn't THAT be awesome!
I LOVED this post. I have wanted to do this and now you have made it so easy!! Thanks! I never imagined that those trees started out as the dark green!!! I thought people were finding them white somewhere - and DUMMY ME - "why can't I find any?" LOL.
I'll be following along now! I'm so glad you found me so that I could find you! YAY!
Have a great day! Karen @Some Days Are Diamonds

June said...

Thank you soooo much for this tutorial Cathy. I have wanted to do this for such a long time. I can't wait to go get some trees and try it. I love how yours all turned out.

Joan@anythinggoeshere said...

I am so right on this. I hope our Big Lots has trees left!!!! xo Joan

basketsnprims said...

thank you so, so much for this. I happen to have a bunch of those trees I bought a couple of years ago. I cannot wait to try it. You are just so clever. I used your tutorial for printing on fabric ~ awesome. thanks again.

Snugglebug Blessings said...

Brilliant! I am so thankful I found you and that you are so kind to share your talent and expertise! God bless. Cathy

Sweet Posy Dreams said...

What a great idea! Love this!