How to Build a Pillar Column

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Pillar columns are both decorative and useful, and can be purchased in a variety of styles and designs from a home decorating or home improvement stores. However, buying a pre-made pillar column constructed from real stone can be very costly. Save money by building your own pillar column using a few inexpensive tools and materials purchased from a craft supply store. This enables you to create an elegant-looking pillar column without spending a fortune in the process.

Things You'll Need

  • Pillar molds, 2 halves
  • Cooking spray
  • 20 gallon bucket
  • Plaster of Paris
  • Paint stick
  • Plaster compound
  • Trowel
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Place the two sides of a pillar mold onto a flat surface with the openings facing up. Spray the inside of each pillar mold with cooling spray.

  • Fill a 20 gallon bucket with one part plaster of Paris and one part water. Stir the mixture with a paint stick for five minutes to combine the materials completely.

  • Pour the plaster of Paris into the molds, filling the molds to the top. Tap the bottom of the molds gently to release any trapped air bubbles that could weaken the pillar columns. Allow the plaster to set for four to six hours.

  • Turn the molds upside down while holding the front of the mold to release the plaster pillar columns. Place the pillar castings onto a table top with the flat sides facing up.

  • Spread a 1/2-inch thick layer of plaster compound over one pillar half, then press the other pillar half on top of the first. Scrape off any excess plaster compound using a trowel. Allow the compound to dry for two to three hours.

  • Stand the pillar column upright and sand off any areas of imperfection using fine-grit sandpaper.

Tips & Warnings

  • Cover your work area with a drop cloth. Plaster of Paris can be very messy.
  • Do not submerge your hands or feet into plaster of Paris. Plaster of Paris become very hot and can burn skin while it is drying.

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References

  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
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