Bleached Pine Cones

bleached pine cones

Is obsession with pine cones a medical condition? Because it should be illustrated with me. But really, they come in all shapes and sizes, each lovelier than the other. I collect every type I can get my hands on: tiny to big, round, cylindrical, from the Mediterranean all the way up to the Carpathian forests.

Around this time every year I can’t help myself and bring a few more home, even though I have the stocks from last year, the year before that, and probably even older ones neatly packed away to be used for some great DIY.

These beauties are perfect decor all year, but their peak season is the holidays. I already did spray painted pinecones, glitter pinecones, pine cone garlands, pine cone wreaths and used them to up my gift wrapping. They are a Christmas staple offering endless possibilities. Just have a look at the zillion ideas popping up in a Pinterest search!

This year, I tried bleaching to change the look up a little, and I think they turned out very pretty. Bleaching pine cones is an easy and inexpensive craft project, all you need is a bucket, the cheapest bleach you can find, a plate and some patience.

bleached pine cones

To achieve this effect, put pine cones in the bucket and pour the bleach over them. They should be completely submerged. You’ll notice how they tend to float, and that is where the plate comes in handy: place it on top of the cones to force them under the liquid. The cones will eventually close as they absorb the bleach, but no worries!

And now we wait.

At this point I admit I thought it’s not going to work. My cones were sitting in the bleach for the required 24 hours and they were still very much their original colour. After another day with no change whatsoever, I was about to give up and throw the whole thing out. But when I poured the bleach (thus exposing the pine cones to air), the magic happened: they started losing colour. So just have a little faith! 🙂

After removing from the bleach, place the cones on paper towels or newspaper and let them dry completely. They will open up again nicely. And there you have your bleached pine cones! Use them to make ornaments, place cards, display under a glass cloche or put together a cluster for a charming door hanger.

bleached pine cones

Are you obsessing over pine cones as well? What do you do with yours? New ideas are welcome in the comments below!



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