Welcome to another Thrift Store Upcycle! I’ve paired up with 19 other talented ladies to bring you a monthly Thrift Store Decor Upcycle Challenge. Each month we will create a new home decor piece from an item(s) we find at a thrift store, yard sale, resale shop etc. There is no budget or specific theme so we are free to let our creativity run wild!

Meet the Hosts

Amanda | The Kolb Corner      Chelc| Inside the Fox Den
Erlene | My Pinterventures     Kim | Made in a Day     Sara | Twelve on Main
Debra | Shoppe No. 5      Shirley | Intelligent Domestications
Marie | DIY Adulation     Lindsay | Crazy Organized   Michelle | Our Crafty Mom
Julie | Live From Julie’s House     Dru | Polka Dot Poplars
Maureen | Red Cottage Chronicles     Pili | Sweet Things     Channell | Hobnail House
Colleen | Life on Kaydeross Creek     Ann | Duct Tape and Denim
Paula | Virginia Sweet Pea     Sherry | Savvy Apron     Stacy | Anastasia Vintage

You can also follow our board on Pinterest for more upcycled decor inspiration!

Faux Succulent Mug Planter

Faux Succulent Mug Planter

If it’s one thing I’ve learned about thrifting is that you have to be patient AND flexible because you never know what you’ll find each month. Like this month, I originally wanted to find a desk for my daughter’s room, but I couldn’t find the right piece, which left me looking for another thrift store project and not a lot of time. That’s when I found two large chipped mugs in a local thrift store and brought them home to create a Faux Succulent Mug Planter.

Faux Succulent Mug Planter Supplies:

  • Thrift find – large mug
  • chalk paint
  • paint brush
  • twine (optional)
  • glue
  • Dollar Tree dried moss
  • Dollar Tree faux succulent stems (I used 6)
  • styrofoam

Faux Succulent Mug Planter Directions:

chipped mugs

chalk paint

Each cup had a chip on the rim and gray/black stains on parts of the outside. I know you’re wondering why in the heck did I buy chipped and stained cups when there were probably plenty of perfectly fine cups, right? Well, I bought them because these mugs are BIG and the perfect size for a succulent mug planter. I didn’t want a small cup that could only hold one succulent stem. I wanted to create a mini succulent planter, so I painted the outside and part of the inside of the cup with three layers of chalk paint to hide all the ugly. Not only did the three layers of paint cover all of the stains, it also captured my horizontal brush strokes to create a textured look that mimicked handmade pottery – score!

Cut styrofoam to fit into the faux succulent mug planter

Once the mug was dry, I cut a piece of styrofoam to fit snuggly into the cup and to sit a half inch under the rim.

Faux succulent placement

Since the cup had a chipped rim, I made sure to arrange the stems so the chip would face the back.  I chose 6 faux succulent stems and added them into the styrofoam. I used 4 large succulent stems around the edge of the cup and two taller succulent stems in the center area.

glue moss

To cover the styrofoam, I added craft glue all over the open areas of exposed styrofoam and pressed moss into it. Do not use hot glue as it will melt the styrofoam and faux succulent stems.

Faux succulent mug planterTo finish off the mug, I tied twine around the top, but you can opt to leave it plain too.

Faux succulent mug planter


Then all I had to do was place it on my kitchen shelf to add a little bit of faux greenery. What do you think?

Make sure to visit the other Thrift Store Upcycle transformations –

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. The faux succulents in the large mug make such a sweet little accent piece. This would be a great casual gift for a friend or co-worker. Thanks for the tutorial.
    Carol (“Mimi”) from Home with Mimi

  2. What a cute little idea. It’s the perfect size when you need a small little something on a table. Love it.

  3. Succulents are so popular right now, and I love the faux ones because they look just like fresh ones. I love that you put it in a thrifted mug because you can use it anywhere in the home.

  4. It’s really pretty Erlene. I like the brush strokes on the mug too. The twine finished it off nice. I really have to get over to the Dollar Tree and grab some of those succulents before they are all gone!

  5. I love it! The mug was a great thrift store score and it looks wonderful filled with succulents. I’ve been planning a similar project for months and even have it all laid out on my craft table, I just haven’t completed it. Seeing yours has motivated me to get mine finished so that I can start to enjoy it.