Back to School Unicorn Bucket Pencil Holder – DIY
Last year my baby girl joined her brother in a land far away and I can’t tell you how proud I am of her. A few weeks back, the University of Ottawa let us know that she’s been awarded a scholarship to study Biochemistry. WHAAAAT!!!!! So she’ll be going back to school, or university, in about a month’s time and I’ve been itching to make her something that’s both functional and will remind her just how much we love and miss her. Something like a unicorn bucket or two 😉 There’s a Mommy unicorn to hold her pens, pencils, and brushes…….
………. and a smaller planter version with a faux cactus stuck inside. My daughter’s green thumb is still a little brown around the edges 😉
Aren’t they adorable? And they’re really easy to make too.
What you need to make the unicorn bucket pencil holder or planter
- Hot water (about 150°F or 65°C)
- Wax Paper
- Fork or tongs
- Faux flowers
- Metal buckets
- Spray paint (optional)
- InstaMorph Moldable Plastic
If you don’t have any moldable plastic, you can use air dry clay or paper mache instead.
The only buckets I could find were pink with white dots. Not quite the look I was going for. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen a polka dot unicorn before 😉 Have you?
Unicorns don’t care if you believe in them any more than you care if they believe in you
But there’s nothing a few coats of spray paint won’t fix.
Making the Unicorn Horn
To make the horns for the unicorns I used this crazy stuff called InstaMorph. I ordered a small packet from Amazon and I can’t tell you how much fun I’ve had with it. I gave half of the packet to a friend of mine and even after making the unicorn horns I still have a whole bunch left. A little sure goes a loooooong way.
What is InstaMorph
InstaMorph is a lightweight thermoplastic which is moldable when warm and becomes a hard, strong plastic when it cools down. It’s A DIY-ers dream. Seriously you can use it to mold almost anything, including false teeth. No lies. Just check out the reviews on Amazon 😀 Once it cools down you can sand it, drill into it or paint it just like any other plastic form. Pretty darn awesome right!!?
How to Use InstaMorph
This stuff is so much fun to work with. Boil about three cups of water and pour into a bowl. Allow to cool down so it’s still hot but not scalding to prevent burns. Add some of the InstaMorph pellets and leave for a minute or so until they become clear and start sticking together. Remove the pellets with a fork or tongs and shake off any excess water.
Use your hands, or other crafty tools, to form the pellets into whatever shape you’d like to make.
For the unicorn horn, I rolled the InstaMorph into a sausage and then slowly twisted it on one end. I flattened the other end to create a flat surface to glue onto the buckets later. Just be careful when working with the InstaMorph. It will stick to other plastics and fabrics. Ask me how I know ? Wax paper or a piece of glass are good surfaces to work on.
When InstaMorph cools down it becomes as hard as plastic, so you need to work quickly. But that’s okay. You can always re-heat and mold it again if you don’t like the shape. Once you’re happy, let it cool down completely before painting or sanding. For the unicorn horn, I sprayed it with white glitter paint.
Adding the horn to the unicorn buckets
Use E6000, or any other clear strong glue, to attach the InstaMorphish horns on the inside of the buckets. I love using E6000 but it does take a while to dry properly so, depending on the glue you use, you may need to clamp the horn down.
In the meantime, you can start getting your faux flowers ready to add around the horn. I bought some cheap bunches of blue and yellow flowers (my daughter’s favorite colors 😉 ) Depending on the type of flower you have you may need to cut the stalk off.
Glue the flowers around the horn and draw on some eyes to finish the unicorn buckets off.
So easy and because the horn is plastic it should be durable too, just in case my daughter blows something up unintentionally. Hey, she’s going to be doing biochemical things so you never know 😉
And when her green thumb starts working properly she can replace the faux cactus with the real thing.
I’m hoping the Mommy unicorn will make her smile and think of us back here at home.
But I would love to know what you think of her back to school gift idea. Would you make one for your kids?
If you like the idea of a back to school unicorn bucket don’t forget to pin it for later.
And just in case you want to play with InstaMorph moldable plastic, it might be a good idea to pin the instructions too.
Oh and if you’re looking for some of the things we used, we’ve got you covered Disclosure: Clicking on the links below, means we may receive a commission from Amazon. But don’t worry it won’t come out of your pocket, and it helps us come up with more amazing craft ideas to share with you 😉
And if you prefer to buy rather than DIY
Until next time, hope you have a beautiful crafty week.
14 thoughts on “Back to School Unicorn Bucket Pencil Holder – DIY”
Beautiful! What a cool idea! That is one clever project. I know quite a few people who would love this, me. you’re so creative.
Thanks so much Mary ?
The unicorn buckets are super cute, and I’m sure she loves them and will think of yall every time she looks at them. I’m sure your one proud mama. And congratulations to your daughter for her scholarship!
She got them yesterday and I’m happy to report she loves them ?
You must be so proud of your daughter. Wishing her all of the best with her studies and the little unicorns will bring lots of memories I’m sure
I am terribly proud of her and her brother too. They’ve both done so well in a strange country. I miss them though ?
This is so sweet and thoughtful. Congratulations to your daughter, so exciting to be educated and see a new place. She has to try maple syrup, and check out people skating on the Rideau canal
Thank you Leanna, I’ll tell her ? I know her brother loves Maple Syrup and if I’m not mistaken she has tried it. They’ll be coming for a short visit in a few weeks and I’m dying to give them both a hug and catch up with all the things they’ve been up to.
I love the idea. How much do you need for each horn?
So happy you like the idea Raynette. You really don’t need a lot of the plastic pellets. For the Mommy unicorn I used about a 1/3 of a cup. Depending on how big the buckets are you may need more or less.
Michelle I am so happy to hear that Talia is doing so well in school. You must be one very proud mama. And I know she will love her mama’s gift for her. That is one super cool looking unicorn! Just the perfect thing to keep you close to her.
❤ She’s settled in so well in her new home and she’s on the University swim team too. I think the only thing she struggles with a bit is understanding French ? she learned a few words to get by but fortunately, the classes will be in English, so all good ?
Adorable…and congratulations to your scholar!!
Thank you Kim, she’s one special little lady ❤