How to make a Planted Ampersand

INSIDE : Learn how to create a gorgeous moss spring decor statement with this fun craft!  How to make a Planted Ampersand and have fun along the way.

How to make a simple Planted Ampersand decor item! Delineate Your Dwelling

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This post has been updated since it’s original March 2014 publish date.

Last week I shared my fabulous Tiny Prints inspired Garden Party.  It was so fun to collaborate with TP (that’s what you call them when you’re buds like we are).   I filled that party to the brim with fun and easy garden DIY’s so I wanted to share a few of them with you!  Today, I will be sharing How to make a Planted Ampersand.

What supplies do I need to make a Paper Mache Ampersand plant?

Paper Mache Ampersand
Blue Embroidery String
Peach acrylic Paint + brush
Hot Glue

Optional : High Grit Sand paper

What are the steps to creating a Planted Moss Ampersand table decor piece?

Start by getting a plain paper mache Ampersand from your local craft shop.  Then, using a box knife, VERY GINGERLY cut the top off.   Please be careful with those fingers on this step!!

Planted Ampersand Step 1

Once the top was off, this what was inside.  So interesting, right?  

Remove the inside support pieces and you have created your empty vessel or container for the moss.

Planted Ampersand Step 2

As you can see, I did my best but some areas I just had to hack a bit and the edges became mangled.  You can use a high grit sandpaper to help smooth down some of the rough edges.

Planted Ampersand Step 3

Painting a Moss Decor piece

After the ampersand container was smooth, I painted the outside edges with a lovely soft peach acrylic paint color and let it dry.
Planted Ampersand painting

Adding real plants

Now my original plan was to install real plants in this ampersand.  I knew this would not be a long term planter, but long enough for my party and hopefully a few weeks of light watering after that.  Well…. it just didn’t quite go according to plan.
1. I covered the bottom of the ampersand in aluminum foil.

2. I used sweet little white Alysum plants and started filling in the planter.

Planted Ampersand Step 4

3. The plants are a little more “wild” than I had intended and you completely lose the shape.
4. It’s a great mix of hard and soft… but it wasn’t exactly the look I was going for.

Planted Ampersand Step 5
From underneath, I loved the little plants peeking out.

How to make a simple Planted Ampersand decor item! Delineate Your Dwelling
Adding Moss to your Paper Mache vessel

The day before my garden party, I had to throw my sweet Alysum plants into the trashcan.  They took a turn for the worse and were looking like wimpy pancake Alysum.  Certainly not party worthy.

So, “Plan B” was put into action… a Moss filled Ampersand wrapped with Blue Embroidery String!

How to make a simple Planted Ampersand decor item! Delineate Your Dwelling
I LOVED the look of randomly wrapping the paper mache with embroidery string.
How to make a simple Planted Ampersand decor item! Delineate Your Dwelling

Even though this project took a turn for the worse since the plants died and I had to start over, I am so pleased with how it turned out in the end.  Now I have this Planted Ampersand displayed on my mantel and don’t need to worry about watering it!

How to make a simple Planted Ampersand decor item! Delineate Your Dwelling




Looking for other fun Spring related craft projects?

Floral Champagne Saucer Glasses

Faux Floral Champagne Saucer Glasses

Magnetic DIY Daffodil Planters

Magnetic DIY Daffodil Planter


  1. Wow! I wish my craft fails would turn out like yours did! Such a cute idea as a little planter, but even better with the moss. Now you’ll be able to enjoy indefinitely! Thanks for sharing at my Creative Ways Link Party!

    1. delineateyourdwelling says:

      Thanks so much, Nici. This is one of my favorite projects… and fails, ha!

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