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It's so cold in LA that I almost couldn't wear shorts to the beach!

It’s so cold in LA that I almost couldn’t wear shorts to the beach!

As the delayed winter weather finally starts to kick in all over the country, it is going to be pretty easy to get the seasonal blues this year. Especially after that extended summer that we had. Despite enjoying the chillier weather myself, I’m not really a fan of it getting dark at 4:30 in the afternoon, and it does tend to affect my moods. One of the things that I do to keep myself sane during the long, dark and chilly winter months here in Los Angeles is to make sure that I tell all of my East Coast friends how cold I am while wearing shorts and open-toed shoes. Their combination of rage and jealousy makes me forget the fact that I have to actually use blankets at night now and it cheers me right up. (Editor’s Note: We in Cleveland are not amused by Californian definitions of “cold.”)

Another way to keep myself sane during our torturous low-sixty degree California weather is to make sure that I spend a few minutes tending to the plants in my yard and doing my best to enjoy the greenery around me. And while that may be hard for some of you in colder states where it snows, there are ways around it. Rather than having an outdoor garden, put a few small house plants in your windows and you’d be surprised how much they will cheer up your ice cave.

So to help you all out I thought that I would find the coolest, nerdiest and strangest 3D printable planters and flower pots available online. So here are this week’s Ten 3D Printable Things – Cool and Unique Planters and Flower Pots.


HAPPY PLANTERS

3dp_ten3dpthings_happypotsHappy Planters – Small by XYZWorkshop

Found on: Pinshape
Cost: Free

I’m going to kick things off on a happy note with these happy mini planters. If adorable, smiling little pots can’t cheer up your day just a little bit then it might be time to visit a doctor, because the grin on these little guys is infectious. These cute little pots are perfect for small house plants or easy-to-keep-alive succulents. You can download the originals which can be 3D printed on a standard FDM 3D printer, and there is even a ceramic version for people with a paste extruding 3D printer.


MINI PLANTER CHESS SET

3dp_ten3dpthings_chess_2Micro Planter Chess Set by XYZWorkshop

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

It’s pretty hard to be surprised by chess sets these days, as I’ve seen hundreds of them that are really cool and clever. But this great mini planter chess set is just great fun, and it is great for either indoor or outdoor use. How great would this look in a garden? Or inside of a sunroom inside of the house?3dp_ten3dpthings_chess_1


BROKEN POT PLANTER

3dp_ten3dpthings_crackedpot_1Cracked Flower Pot by Sander Mettes

Found on: MyMiniFactory
Cost: Free

I love this little pot because it is a nice twist on the classic pot shape, but with a beefier and more stable bottom, which is important for pots made out of plastic. The idea is that whatever is planted in it has burst the pot with its roots, and the pot is only being held together by said roots. This is a really neat idea, and even if you don’t want to put a real plant in it, it would look great with a simple fake fern or some fake grass.

3dp_ten3dpthings_crackedpot_2However, it is important to note that this will probably need to be painted in order for it to have the full effect, so make sure that you have some primer, acrylic paints and a filament that takes paint well.


UPSIDE DOWN OCTOPUS PLANTER FOR AIR PLANTS

3dp_ten3dpthings_octopus_planterHanging Air Plant Octopus by FoxRobotics

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

I have a bit of a thing for octopuses (octopi?) – not that kind of a thing, weirdo – and I have several decorative items around my house to prove it. They’re just a unique and fascinating animal, and always seem to prove themselves a lot smarter than scientists can manage to predict. So downloading and 3D printing a few of these guys is a no-brainer for me. And they’re so cool that it might almost be worth paying to have someone like Shapeways have a few 3D printed in ceramic.

I love the clever use of the air plant as the tentacles of the octopus planter, and the fact that it was designed to be hung upside down. While air plants aren’t especially common, they can be purchased pretty easily from most local garden centers, even during the winter months, and they are ridiculously easy to keep alive. This is kind of the perfect plant to give to someone who can’t manage to keep plants alive.


BONSAI ROOT PLANTER

3dp_ten3dpthings_bonsai_rootsgCreate Bonsai Root Planter by gCreate

Found on: MyMiniFactory
Cost: Free

I guess this would be intended for an actual bonsai tree, but the root-shaped planter is cool enough for just about any plant. Personally I think it would be really cool with a tall growing shrub of some kind, and if it can be printed in a water-safe material would look great outdoors in a garden. If you have the printing volume on your 3D printer it would even be cool to scale the model up a few sizes to really look dramatic.


GENERATIVE DESIGNED POT

3dp_ten3dpthings_dendritasDendritas v3.0 by Vicente Gasco

Found on: MyMiniFactory
Cost: Free

This uniquely shaped planter was created using a fractal growth algorithm model that will auto-generate organic, natural shapes often found in nature. The designer created it as part of some generative design research that he was doing to explore how art, science and mathematics can intersect.

Not only would this be a great planter, but it would also look cool as a small storage container or a place to keep loose change and your keys. It would also be really cool to print this out using a specialized material, like a wood filament or even a metallic filament.


SPACE SUIT PLANTER

3dp_ten3dpthings_space_legsSpace Explorer Planter by emancarrillo

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

This planter is probably better suited to a slow growing plant like a cactus or some succulents due to the glass dome on top of the legs, but it would also make a novel display stand for a small object. The dome can easily be purchased online, and the designer offers a few suggestions for where to get one. He also suggests that in order to get the best results it should be 3D printed in ABS and them smoother with acetone — although it could also have a layer of XTC-3D applied and then painted for the same effect.


MINI PLANTER PENDANT NECKLACE 

3dp_ten3dpthings_necklaceWearable Planter vase by Colleeniebikini

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

So at this point, if your winter blues aren’t cheered up by all the cute and fun planters around your house then maybe it’s worth trying something different. How about wearing the plant around your neck? This cute little mini planter is perfect for a small, slow-growing plant or even an air plant, and can be worn as a necklace or hung around a car mirror or in windows. It would also look pretty cool to 3D print a bunch of them and hang several of them in bunches, almost like a wind-chime.


MILITARY JEEP PLANTER

3dp_ten3dpthings_jeepjeep_flowerpot by woon

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

This is probably the most complicated planter to make on this list, but it is still pretty easy to assemble. It prints out in about a dozen parts that need to be glued together and painted. But it doesn’t actually need to be painted like a military jeep; it could be painted a dramatic, solid color, or even sprayed with a metallic paint. This would obviously be a great way to cheer up someone in the military, as it’s small enough to ship, and won’t get in the way in whatever small sleeping area they are confined to.


WALL HANGING POT WITH WATERING CLOUD

3dp_ten3dpthings_wall_potWall Flower Mount by 3DPVDB

Found on: Thingiverse
Cost: Free

Okay, so these may be a bit more whimsical than most people’s home decor can tolerate, but it is still an adorable, and quite clever, design. The cloud on the wall hanging pot is actually a water reservoir that slowly drips water over the plant underneath it. The model is split into three different files so it can be 3D printed in different color materials, or it could always be painted whatever color you want.

Thinking about it, if the design is too cutesy for you PERSONALLY, then it might be a perfect options for a kid’s room, or maybe even a classroom. Plus, because the cloud drips the water slowly, it is easy for kids to be able to maintain it without killing or over watering the plant.


Okay, that should do it, no more winter weather blues for you, mister or missus! Bring some living cheer into your life with some adorable house plants and put them in 3D printed pots. If you’re worried about killing the plants then just make sure that you buy some really hearty succulents or ferns. There are some varieties that are virtually impossible to kill, so don’t worry about that black thumb.

(And yes, I know it isn’t Wednesday, but CES is going on this week, so we got a little inundated with news of new printers, materials, announcements and general CES buzz… Also, it may actually be Wednesday in an alternate universe where Thursday is Wednesday and Wednesday is Polipticusday, you just don’t know so stop judging me.)

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