Mini Vases made from Yogurt Bottles

It’s really easy to make sweet mini bud vases by upcycling empty yogurt drink bottles.


It’s time for the Sustainable Craft Challenge when I join a group of my creative friends to bring a collection of craft ideas with an eco friendly, upcycling or recycling twist to help us all craft more sustainably. This month our theme is NATURE, so stay tuned and check out all the ideas at the end of this tutorial.

For my NATURE themed project I’ve upcycled daily probiotic yogurt drink bottles and turned them into pretty bud vases.

I really don’t like to buy things in single use plastic containers if I can avoid it but it seems almost impossible to reduce it to zero in our home. We do have facilities locally to recycle plastics but it’s always better to reuse wherever you can, right?

To turn yogurt bottles into mini vases you will need:

  • Yogurt shot drink bottles - empty and clean obviously!

  • Pressed flowers and leaves

  • Mod Podge

  • Twine

  • A soft paint brush and tweezers

Pressing flowers and leaves

The first thing you’ll need to do is press your flowers and leaves.

There are several ways to press flowers:

  • a stack of books

  • a flower press

  • ironing

  • microwave

I opted for the old school method from my childhood of a stack of books.

Place the flowers and leaves on a folded sheet of paper and pop them between the pages of a heavy book, add another heavy book or two on top for good measure and leave for 2 weeks. Gail from Purple Hues and Me shared her experience using the "iron to press flowers" method if you want to check that out too.

If you don’t have access to flowers to press or just don’t want to wait you can buy ready pressed flowers too.

Once your flowers and leaves are ready you can prep your bottles. First, remove any labels. The yogurt bottle I had have a sort of “wrap” so they came off really easily. If your bottles have a sticky label you can soak it off or use something like Sticky Stuff Remover. Nail polish remover can work well to remove ink from plastic if it’s been printed directly on. If the label or any print is just not budging you could consider painting your bottles to cover them completely.

Decorating your yogurt bottles

Dab a small bit of Mod Podge onto your plastic bottle and then CAREFULLY pick up a pressed flower with the tweezers and GENTLY place it on the glue. Then dab a small amount of Mod Podge on top and smooth it a little with a GENTLE dabbing motion. I cannot stress enough how GENTLE you will want to be as you handle your pressed flowers. Gentle and careful, careful and gentle. Using a soft paint brush to apply the Mod Podge will help too.

Lastly use a cotton bud to remove any excess glue - again do this ….. guess what ….. gently! You don’t want to slip and squish those delicate petals.

Continue glueing on the petals and flowers in any way you like. What you do will depend on what flowers and leaves you have of course. Have fun playing around with what you have.

You can plan first, by laying the flowers out on a piece of plain paper but I’d advise handling your delicate pressed flowers as little as possible really.

As soon as the glue is dry your mini vases are ready to use.

For a little extra you can add some twine wrapped and then tied at the top. I tried them with and without a bow and I think I like the bow version best.

I like how the leaf vase on the left here turned out. To be honest I’m not sure the other one was quite so successful but it’s quite pretty in real life. I was going for a “meadow” effect but I think it would work better if I had pressed something with more feathery leaves.

I think these little upcycled bud vases look best in groups, it’s more impactful, but you could use them on their own too. And wouldn’t they be sweet next to each place setting at the table for a special meal?


Now let’s check out the other NATURE themed ideas for this month’s Sustainable Craft Challenge: