About a year ago I joined the ranks of a very proud group of people: those who “live alone”. I’ve noticed over the years that anyone who has an apartment and doesn’t share it with a dozen people they met off of Craigslist is only too excited to tell you how much they LOVE living alone!
“I soooo do not miss having a roommate.” They’ll exclaim. “At least if there’s a mess I know I made it. Right??”
I can’t disagree per se. Living alone definitely has its perks. I’ve never had such sophisticated conversations with my cat for one, but there are difficult aspects as well. Namely having to do everything by yourself, and if you’re like me and need your home to be the type of pad that breeds constant praise and jealousy from all of your friends, you’re going to have to get familiar with some power tools.
In the past I’ve always been happy to just hammer a nail into the wall and toss up whatever Urban Outfitters piece of crap I was feeling at the moment but I’m in my thirties now, I’ve graduated to West Elm and their shit requires hardware so I had my brother give me a crash course on how to anchor things.
Making a Plant Wall:
First things first. A drill battery is not like your camera battery where you can charge it and then not pay attention to it for a year and expect it to work when you’re ready to use it. These batteries are extremely demanding and depending on what kind of drill you have you may even need to charge the thing overnight if you want it to be at full power the day of.
To make my plant wall I ordered a bunch of these ceramic and glass planters from West Elm:
Then I filled the ceramic ones with plants and the glass ones with moss.
You may have noticed that half of these plants are dead. That is because I actually did this project a couple of months ago and am only now photographing it. I will not be doing a follow up on how to care for your plants.
At any rate, when building your wall, I suggest you use fake plants or fully alive plants and don’t buy them from West Elm! I always get sucked into doing everything exactly like the catalog says I should and wound up spending two hundred bucks on a bunch of air plants that are supposed to last a decade just by spritzing them once a year and as you can see I haven’t had much luck.
Just go to the plant district or whatever that area around 7th Ave and 28th street is called and pick up something small enough to fit in your vases and you’ll save yourself a small fortune. I got the moss from Home Depot.
Before you start drilling a bunch of holes into your apartment all willy nilly, you might want to think about what the planters are going to look like once they’re up. I did this by placing them on the floor first and establishing a pattern. Then I did my best to replicate it on the wall. If you’re crazy you can calculate the inches between all of your planters and mark them accordingly on the wall but then you need a measuring tape and you already bought a drill, so just chill out.
Now for the fun part! First you need to select a drill bit. These are drill bits:
Start out small and play with the size. When I was doing this wall I used two bits to drill the hole, one small one to get it going and then a bigger one to really dig in. (I’m having a hard time writing this with a straight face so please bare with me until we get out of the “hole” section) The size of the hole will be determined by the anchors you bought, but we’ll get to that in a minute.
Now this is a tricky part: Attaching the drill bit to the drill. Take your bit and place it in the drill opening.
There are two settings on this particular drill, and perhaps on every drill for that matter but what the hell do I know? Push the red button to the left and it closes the front of the drill around the bit securing it in place, push it to the right and it opens to release the bit but you have to hold this part and the bit at the same time while pulling the trigger! Once the bit is in place I’m pretty you can use this red button to allow you to drill forward and backwards too; backwards for when you want to unscrew something.
Since you have to hold the drill bit in place while the drill is attaching itself you may end up with the skin on your fingers coming clean off seeing as sharp metal edges are essentially spinning around in your hand at ridiculous speeds. I decided that wearing this rubber glove might help.
It did not. I got the glove caught up in the drill so you might want to try wearing something sturdier or just deal with blisters until you get the hang of it.
Once you’ve got your hole drilled to a size of your liking bust out your anchors. These are anchors:
I bought ribbed for her pleasure (Haha! Thanks Jeff Rheel). No but seriously, they come in lots of different sizes so make sure to choose the appropriate ones for your project.
It’s all downhill from here! Bang these white suckers into the wall and then twist the screws in about half way using a screwdriver (or your drill if you’re feeling super confident, but a screwdriver will give you more control). They should look like this when they’re in the wall:
Hang up your plants and you officially need your ex boyfriend for one less thing in your life.