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Crafting Autumn Magic- DIY Plaster Leaves Tutorial

Fall is a time for magic. The leaves change color, the air gets crisp, and the smell of pumpkin spice fills the air. It’s also a time for crafting, and I have several projects planned using recycled artificial leaves to make DIY Plaster Leaves. Today’s tutorial will teach you step-by-step how to make your own plaster leaves DIY projects for Autumn.

These leaves are easy to make and can be customized to your liking. You can use different colors and various types of leaves and even add glitter or other embellishments. With a little bit of creativity, you can create beautiful leaves for multiple craft projects.

I used various-shaped artificial leaves and copper spray paint for today’s project, creating elegant leaves for fall crafts.

Crafting DIY Plaster Leaves DIY

Y’all might remember that I shared How to Save a Faux Ficus Tree some time ago. I saved all those ficus leaves because I knew I’d want to make a craft project with them someday.

Then I pulled out some old, faded fall stems and recycled them with the ficus leaves.

The old leaves were inspiring a few new craft ideas for fall.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

Before I can share the projects that I used the recycled leaves for, I have to share how I made plaster leaves DIY.

Recycle old faux leaves for fall projects.

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Supplies for Fall Craft

Prepare for project

First, I want to say this project is a little messy and you need a good amount of space to work in.

You will want to cover an area for your leaves to dry. I used plastic, but you can use wax paper or any material the leaves will not stick to.

The area needs to be large enough for all leaves to be spread out to dry.

DIY PLaster Leaves for fall craft projects.

Next, using wire snips, cut off the stems from your faux leaves.

Snip stems from artificial fall leaves to recycle.

Plaster of Paris for DIY Paster Leaves

Now you are ready to begin mixing your plaster of paris.

In a large mixing bowl, add a small amount of plaster of Paris and just enough water to get a thick consistency, approximately like mayonnaise.

Insider Tip



Mix plaster of paris for Fall craft project with recycled leaves.

I added the faux leaves right into the mixture and stirred around to get a good coating on the leaves.

Then I pulled each leaf from the plaster and spread them onto the plastic wrapped table.

If some leaves are not coated well, you can use a brush to add more plaster to each side.

Artificial leaves with plaster of paris for DIY Fall Plaster Leaves tutoriall

Allow to Dry

Be sure that your plastered leaves are completely dry before painting. I waited two days. However, 24 hours should be sufficient.

Plaster of Paris on artificial leaves for fall craft projects.

Paint your plastered leaves

For this next step you will want to transfer your leaves to a well ventilated area or outside if you are using spray paint.

Plaster Leaves DIY for fall craft projects.

I moved mine outside and I used Rust-oleum Hammered Copper to paint my leaves.

Rust-oleum Copper Paint for Fall Craft Project

You can also paint each leaf with a brush, however unless your project is small, this will take some time to do.

After your leaves are dry, turn over and paint the back sides.

Copper Spray Paint for Plaster Leaves DIY

Insider Tip -Mistake I Made

This was my first attempt at this project and here are a few things I would do differently.

  1. Be sure that both sides of the leaf are coated throughly with the plaster. Some of mine were thinly coated and therefore, they were fragile. Those with a good heavy coating were perfect for my projects.
  2. Paint both sides of the leaf. I originally only painted the front side and this left the plaster on the backside flakey. After I realized my mistake, I quickly applied a coat of paint to the back side as well.

Plaster Leaves DIY Projects

You might be wondering at this point what I plan to do with all these plaster leaves. Well, I actually have 3 projects in mind. First, you can check out this hanging leaf wreath tutorial.

In addition, I plan to use these same hanging leaves on my screen porch light fixture for a Fall Harvest Tablescape.

Then I took the remainder of the leaves and made these DIY Charger Plates for my fall dining table.

See how well the Copper DIY Plaster Leaves work together for a fall table setting!

Fall Harvest Table Setting with DIY Copper Plaster Leaves on light fixture and plate chargers.

Thanks so much for stopping by. I look forward to sharing my next adventure with you.

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Recycled Faux Leaves project for DIY plaster leaves.
DIY Fall Plaster Leaves for fall craft projects