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Pin-Tested! Bleaching Pine Cones

I am a huge fan of Pinterest! Every visit, I find something new and different that inspires me; whether it be a craft project, recipe, amazing nail art or a beautiful holiday destination.

 

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

 

It's like the perfect, endless, glossy magazine full of amazing images. I am aware, of course, that some of these glorious images must have teams of designers behind them, and that not everything that we see on there has been thrown together on a kitchen table, in the way you and I might!

There are a few pins that I come across again and again, and each time a little voice in my head says 'I wonder if that really works?' Well, there is only one way to find out! Welcome to the first investigation in our series of Pin-Tested; where Craft Invaders try out crafty pins that inspire us, and find out how easy it is to recreate that pin at home.

Here is the glorious pin that inspired our investigation How to Bleach Pine Cones

And here is what we did....

We took a mixture of dry pine cones which originated for a selection of pine and fir trees, plus a couple of pieces of bark for good measure, and divided them equally into two. The plan was to treat both groups in exactly the same way, but to leave one sample of cones in the bleach for 24hrs and the other for a few days. We used what I would describe as good quality, thick bleach, and used it neat. To help keep the pine cones submerged under the bleach we used chicken wire.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

24 hrs after we started our investigation, I tipped one lot of the pine cones out of the bleach, and left them on newspaper outside in a covered area to start to dry. The second sample were left for a full five days before being drained in exactly the same way. The picture below show the 24hr pine cones in their bleach, just before I tipped them out.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

And here are the 2 groups of pine cones two weeks after the second batch also came out of the bleach. The group on the right is the batch that spent 5 days in the bleach (the long odd shaped cone is our marker). As you can see leaving the cones the extra time made no real difference to the final results.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

So it's true, you really can bleach pine cones at home easily and quickly! The traditional shaped pine cones were the ones that responded best to the bleach, and its appears that any colour loss that is going to happen, takes place in the first 24hrs. I will be honest and admit that I am delighted with the results we achieved, I was a little sceptical that this was going to work, but as you can see from the photos the pine cones look really rather pretty.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

Now that we have all these beautiful, bleached cones, we wanted to start making things with them straight away! So here is our first project using home-bleached pine cones. We simply painted a terracotta pot with cream acrylic paint, stuck a lace ribbon around the rim, and planted it with a candle, pretty little succulents, moss and our beautiful cream pine cones. I think this would be perfect for a winter table centre-piece!

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

If you have enjoyed this Pin-tested Post, why not check out our Pin-Tested! Homemade Vanilla Extract and our Pin-Tested! Homemade Firelighters Posts. We have a couple more pins ear-marked to be tested over the coming months, but if you have any ideas you'd like to put forward we would love to hear them - the kids and I love a challenge!

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

We test out bleaching pine cones at home. Does it really work and how long does it take? We have all the answers here! See them turned into a beautiful centre-piece. Would be perfect to use in winter crafts and for Christmas decorations.

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32 Comments

  • Reply BJ Palmer

    This is lovely and will make wonderful gifts for my family! I have a huge white pine, and more pine cones than the squirrels and I can use! Four tiny trees were found last week, so there will be even more in the years to come! Thank you for this beautiful project!

    September 9, 2017 at 8:55 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      How lovely to have an endless supply of pine cones, I’m so pleased you like our project 🙂

      September 14, 2017 at 9:23 am
  • Reply Mary-the boondocks blog

    Sarah they look really gorgeous. I’ve never tried this technique or any technique for pine cones. But I really l like what you’ve achieved here.
    Mary-the boondocks blog recently posted…How to Repurpose Vintage Fabric for Gift WrappingMy Profile

    December 5, 2016 at 2:07 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      To be honest I wasn’t convinced it would work Mary, so we were delighted with the results 🙂

      December 7, 2016 at 2:30 pm
  • Reply Michelle

    Your pine cone experiment turned out lovely Sarah. I always loved the look of natural bleached pine cones, it really looks like you left them outside in the elements for a very loooooong time.

    December 5, 2016 at 6:59 am
  • Reply Linda at Mixed Kreations

    Sarah, I love how they turned out! I wish my little 6″ pine tree that I found while pulling weeds one day would hurry up and grow and give me some pine cones. LOL. I really love what you did with the pine cones in your winter table centre-piece. It turned out Beautiful!!!
    Linda at Mixed Kreations recently posted…3 Weeks Til Christmas Gift List – Aluminum BangleMy Profile

    December 4, 2016 at 10:16 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thank you Linda, how lovely to have a baby pine tree – one day you’ll have all the pine cones you could ever want 🙂

      December 7, 2016 at 2:28 pm
  • Reply Claire

    This is such a great idea, I need to try this one 🙂

    pinning 🙂 thanks for sharing at Creative Mondays
    Claire recently posted…The Wednesday Blog Hop..My Profile

    January 13, 2016 at 6:39 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      They do look lovely pale Claire, we used them in all sorts of crafts over Christmas. Thanks for pinning!

      January 14, 2016 at 12:27 pm
  • Reply Deb Mahoney

    Did you rinse the pine cones well after bleaching to remove the bleach odor?

    January 10, 2016 at 10:49 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Hi Deb, No I didn’t rinse them, I left them outside under cover for a few days to dry out and air. When I bought them in there was no odour. Thanks for popping by 🙂

      January 11, 2016 at 8:10 am
  • Reply Betty

    I am so glad you did this Pin test, I have seen this pin and have always wanted to try it, like you, not really sure it would work and now you have convinced me to try it. We have many pine trees on our property and have always used the regular pine cones, no treatment, so this will be a fun different thing to try, again thanks for your testing, I look forward to your other tests.

    January 10, 2016 at 5:21 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      So pleased you found it useful. Like you, I see loads of pins and wonder whether they really work. I am planning to try the growing moss one as soon as the weather warms up, as I’ve always wondered if that one works too 🙂

      January 10, 2016 at 9:59 pm
  • Reply A Patchwork Life

    I’ve a pile a pine cones gathered from walks, and I was going spray them, but think I’ll try this instead. They’ve a kind of lovely washed-out driftwood look about them. Thanks for sharing 🙂
    A Patchwork Life recently posted…DIY glow-in-the-dark Halloween board gameMy Profile

    October 21, 2015 at 1:22 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      They do have a driftwood look about them, I’m really pleased with how they turned out. I’m planning to embellish a few with glitter for Christmas arrangements 🙂

      October 21, 2015 at 5:01 pm
  • Reply sarah

    who would have thought you could take the colour out of pinecones….weird!

    October 6, 2015 at 9:49 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      I wasn’t convinced it’d work before I did it, but turns it works 🙂 Thanks for popping by x

      October 7, 2015 at 1:18 pm
  • Reply Coombe Mill

    I clearly don’t spend enough time on Pinterest as I’ve never seen this done before! What a lovely effect, I want to ti the ends with gold sparkle and make Christmas decorations from them too! Such a great experiment and interesting what you discovered over the length of time the cones were dipped for. Thank you for sharing with me on #Trash2Treasure

    October 5, 2015 at 7:58 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Think I spend way too much time on Pinterest lol. I’ve been thinking exactly the same about the glitter for Christmas decorations – they’d look really lovely. Thanks for having us this month on #Trash2Treasure

      October 5, 2015 at 8:29 pm
  • Reply Random Musings

    I love how these have turned out! Looking forward to the rest of the series 🙂 #myfavouritepost
    Debbie

    September 23, 2015 at 11:53 am
    • Reply Sarah

      They did turn out well didn’t they 🙂 Really looking forward to trying out some more pins – got 2 earmarked so far! Thanks for visiting x

      September 23, 2015 at 1:30 pm
  • Reply Su {Ethan & Evelyn}

    Wow! This is amazing! Thank you so much for sharing. My boy’s school have loads of pine cones. I think I will start collecting these now that I know what to do with them. Thank you! 🙂 #MyFavouritePost

    September 22, 2015 at 8:13 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Perfect to be able to collect some at school – I love collecting pine cones 🙂

      September 22, 2015 at 8:27 pm
  • Reply Cheryl @ ReimerandRuby

    Wow! that flower arrangement looks beautiful… it’s amazing what can you make out of pine cones. I love Pinterest, gives you loads of ideas. #MyFavouritePost

    September 22, 2015 at 2:33 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      I can spend hours of Pinterest 🙂 Thanks for visiting and your kind comments 🙂

      September 22, 2015 at 3:08 pm
  • Reply Caro | The Twinkles Mama

    Gosh — this is SUCH a lovely thing to do!! They look amazing don’t they? No wonder you’re thrilled with the end results! My only question is — do they smell of bleach?? I absolutely hate the smell of the stuff so any residual odour would put me off making them!! Thanks so much for linking up with us xx #TwinklyTuesday

    September 16, 2015 at 3:45 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      Thank you so much for visiting and commenting. No they don’t smell of bleach at all (I just sniffed one close up as well to double check!) I did leave them outside (but undercover) for a while so they got a good airing. I have seen some tutorials on pinterest showing how to make pine cones smell of cinnamon which would be a fun thing to try if that was a smell that appealed to you. Thanks for having us on #TwinklyTuesday!

      September 16, 2015 at 4:54 pm
  • Reply Verily Victoria Vocalises

    These are beautiful – they make perfect autumn decorations and I love the candle decorations. Thanks for linking to #PoCoLo x

    September 12, 2015 at 10:40 pm
    • Reply Sarah

      We’re really pleased with how they turned out. Thanks for having us on #PoCoLo

      September 13, 2015 at 8:58 am
  • Reply Kirsten Toyne

    These look lovely. My mum flower arranges and would be really interested in these. Thanks for sharing. Kirsten

    September 11, 2015 at 10:24 am
    • Reply Sarah

      They’d be lovely in a flower arrangement. Thanks for visiting and taking the time to comment 🙂

      September 11, 2015 at 11:04 am

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