LifeStyle & Health

How to Bleach Pinecones – A Beautiful Mess

I am a big believer in going on walks. It’s part of my daily life, and has been for well over a year now. I could probably write a whole blog post about going on walks, but maybe another time. One side effect of walking is you can collect pretty autumn leaves, or rocks, or pinecones.

By the way, I did not realize until I was getting ready to write this post that you can spell it pine cones OR pinecones. Both are correct. I swear I learn something new every day.

I’ve been collecting pinecones while on walks this past month, and I decided I wanted to learn how to bleach pinecones so I could use them in some kind of project.

You can, of course, buy bleached pinecones. You can also bleach pinecones without bleach by thinning down white paint and dipping or painting them. But I was curious about actually bleaching them, how long it would take, and what kind ratio of bleach to use.

I actually did a few experiments and most of them didn’t work. Ha! But then, the simplest method turned out the best.

Here’s how to bleach pinecones. You will need:

  • pinecones
  • bleach
  • a glass container
  • plastic or other nonporous bag (like a gallon-size Ziploc)

Place the pinecones in the plastic bag, inside a glass container.

Fill the bag with bleach (do not dilute it; trust me, I tried that).

Use things around your house or rocks to weigh the pinecones down so they are submerged in the bleach. They will want to float otherwise.

Allow the pinecones to soak for at least 12 hours. You may need to turn or flip the pinecones while still in the bag so you can aim to get all sides.

Rinse the pinecones in the sink or bathtub, always taking care to not get bleach on your clothes or other fabrics. And generally be careful when working with bleach; it’s a strong substance and can harm surfaces, your skin, and even gives off a pretty strong odor.

Let the bleached pinecones dry out in the sun for another 12-24 hours.

You can use bleached pinecones in crafts, including making a bleached pinecone wreath. That’s what I did—I love making wreaths. Honestly, I have way too many in my house already. Lol.

Other projects you could make with bleached pinecones:

There is so much you can do with bleached pinecones. Leave me a comment if you make something with these because I’d love to hear your ideas! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman.

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