File this one under “not so subtle geeky home decor”, but we now have a 3′ tall Super Mario Bros 3 DIY fire piranha plant in our backyard.
This project started when we decided to build a DIY pergola in our yard, so that we could have an outdoor dining space. Since we are renting, we didn’t want to anchor the pergola in the ground, so instead decided to anchor it into large plastic planters filled with concrete. That worked… until a weird freak LA windstorm blew in and knocked the whole thing over. But it’s okay. We can rebuild it, we have the technology – and this time we built it much stronger. The summary: We wanted to dress up some plain wooden boxes, which our pergola posts are now anchored into. On to the 8-bit piranha!
This was a pretty simple DIY if you’re acquainted at all with a jigsaw (which we <3) and some basic painting skills. It was done in the same way that we did the 8-bit hearts for our Legend of Zelda headboard, but with cheaper hobby board instead of thick wood.
We dug out some graph paper and drew out the fire piranha plant design. Traced that onto the hobby board, cut it out carefully with a jigsaw, and then painted it. The plant was cut out in two parts – the head and the stem, which makes it much easier. The “pipe” is a large wooden box that we built and painted with multiple shades of green.
After everything was dry we took electrical tape and edged the entire plant and the pipe box. The jigsaw can leave a rough edge on hobby board (it splinters a little), and the tape helped to smooth that out, plus we think it looks cool. You
might definitely want to use black duct or gaff tape or something sturdier if you don’t want to have to replace the electrical tape every once in awhile.
Once all that was done, we screwed both pieces of the plant onto the post that’s holding up our pergola, and called it a day. If you don’t have a post (or wall) to screw the plant into, you could make it with thicker wood so that it can stand up on its own.
We’ve been doing more subtle geek decor projects inside, so it was fun to do something more in-your-face-nerdy outside! What do you think?