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How to Glue Seashells to a Plastic Planter

Updated November 21, 2016

Decorative planters can be pricey, so the choice to decorate them at home is an option that will both save money and exercise your creativity. Seashells can be an attractive choice for trim on a plastic planter and can be attained cheaply or even for free.

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  1. Clean seashells that have been collected from a beach carefully to remove any sand or animal remains and to prevent odours. The Shell Craft website recommends soaking seashells in a 50-50 mixture of bleach and water overnight. Rinse the seashells carefully to remove any remaining debris left inside. Allow them to dry.

  2. Rub a piece of sandpaper lightly over each area of the plastic planter where you wish to place a seashell. This will create a surface for the glue to bond more effectively.

  3. If you are using a glue gun, heat it until ready. Place a small dot of glue on the seashell, and quickly stick it to the desired area of the planter. Hold in place until the glue has bonded. When using a liquid glue, you will have to hold the shells in place longer. A rubber band or tape can be used for this purpose. Allow all glue to dry.

  4. Place the pot on newspapers outside and spray evenly with clear adhesive to seal the shells.

  5. Tip

    Choose glue that will adhere tightly without damaging the plastic or the seashell. Hot glue is the fastest option, but depending on the thickness of the plastic, it may melt through. According to a chart found on the Beacon Adhesives website, Dazzle-Tac is an appropriate glue to use with a plastic medium. Test a small area of the pot with a dot of hot glue to make sure it will not melt through the plastic.


    Be sure to follow all directions that come with the glue gun, glue and spray-on adhesives to prevent any injuries.

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Things You'll Need

  • Plastic planter
  • Bleach
  • Seashells
  • Sandpaper
  • Glue gun or other glue appropriate for plastic, such as Dazzle-Tac
  • Newspaper
  • Clear spray-on adhesive

About the Author

Angela Castillo
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