Atomic Style Planters for Fellow MCM Geeks

For the MCM geeks - Atomic Style Planters!

I’m just going to say it – I’m a complete geek for all things MCM, especially the Atomic style patterns of the day. Fortunately for me, so are Joe and Angie of Ambient Wares and Joe created two amazing patterns you can download for free >here<!

I have so many ideas for these patterns, but the first thing I did with them was make some darling planters for my growing collection of succulents.

Clay pots with an amazing Atomic graphic

Initially, I painted two pots white and another two turquoise. I decoupaged Joe’s pattern to the rims of my pots. Unfortunately, when I sprayed them with sealer, the color of the clay bled through the white paint, making it appear dirty next to the bright white patterned rims. So I masked off the decorative rim and hit them all with the spray paint – Rustoleum Chalked in Serenity Blue – which turned out to be a perfect MCM color.

Planting a Dish Garden with Succulents

Choose a pleasing arrangement for your plants

Once everything was dry and sealed time for the fun! The thriller, filler, spiller rule applies to dish gardens as well as outdoor planters. I created a pleasing arrangement, then I used my favorite planting trick.

Place empty pots in planter as space holders

Gently remove the plants from their pots and then place the empty pots as space holders.

add soile and tamp down

Add soil and tamp in place around the empty pots.

Remove the pot leaving a planting hole

Take out one of the pots and there’s your planting space.

pop a plant in

Pop a plant in and move to the next ‘space’.

Continue until it's all planted

Here you can see the finished arrangement with a few more plants added in.

Small planter

One of the smaller pots, still using the formula of thriller, filler, spiller. I love the way this little pot came together with the delicate blue trailer, the fuzzy leaves of the filler and the spiky dark green height behind.

Another small planter

Here is another small pot. Check out Jaws in there!

Some of my collection

This little table used to be my play table as a kid. Now it sits beside my desk under a window.

the smaller pots in my wicker shelf

This little wicker thrift store shelf hangs above.

with the mini turtle

It’s also home to my mini turtle topiary.

All together now

these little pots make me happy

These little pots with their ‘Atomic’ patterned rims make me happy.

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Author: The Shade Gardener

Hi there! I'm Vanessa, the Shade Gardener. I live in a tiny little house in Ontario with my 2 grown boys, 2 dogs and a cat, where I do my best to grow plants in a heavily shaded yard and soil like cement. I am passionate about my family, my pets, MCM furniture and cheese. When I'm not in the garden I do a bit of crafting and sewing. Sometimes I build topiary animals from chicken wire for fun.

7 thoughts on “Atomic Style Planters for Fellow MCM Geeks”

    1. The Shade Gardener says:

      Thank you!

  1. These are wonderful, Vanessa!! Joe and I are looking at them, smiling from ear to ear 😀 That blue is the perfect MCM color and the arrangements of everything down to that wicker shelf is the best! A huge thank you! We’re curious, did you use an inkjet printer or was it laser 😉

    1. The Shade Gardener says:

      I used my black & white laser printer, one of the things I loved most about these designs is that Joe made them for black & white. Isn’t that blue just a perfect MCM color? That’s why I made sure to include the details. I still have some ideas I want to try with these prints – I think they are amazing.

      1. We appreciate reading about what you encountered when putting them on the terra cotta and how you remedied it. I want to slap these designs on everything! Side note, we did open a Red Bubble account which is similar to Society 6. It was a fun learning experience. We plan on using Society 6 as well just haven’t gotten around to it yet 😉 Thanks for suggesting it to me

        1. The Shade Gardener says:

          I want these designs on my day-planner, my address book, my wallet – like you say – everything!

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