Did you know that painting terracotta pots is easy to do? Transforming plain clay pots to stylish outdoor decor requires only a little paint! Painting terra cotta pots is an inexpensive and creative way to jazz up your outdoor decor. With these simple methods, you will learn how to paint terra cotta pots like a professional. Get ready for gorgeous flower pots with your own unique style!
Painting Terracotta Pots
I love outdoor decor, but let’s face it: the price can add up quickly! With many options, the colors, styles, designs, and sizes are limited – especially if you are on a budget.
Recently, I “rediscovered” terra cotta. I always knew it was an option, but the little clay pots just seemed so bland compared to the beautiful, shiny options many garden stores provide. But, when I learned you could paint the terra cotta pots, it was like a whole new world opened up!
It’s amazing how a coat of paint can bring new life to an outdoor space. This project is super simple and gives you plenty of flexibility with colors, shapes, and sizes.
Supplies needed to paint terra cotta:
- Terra cotta pots or clay pots – Generally speaking, clay or terra cotta pots will work well for this project. The size and shape are your choice!
- Patio Paint – Any color to fit your style and space. Can’t find patio paint? Be sure to look for an outdoor paint that says it will work on clay.
As you begin dreaming up a new design for your space, challenge yourself to think outside the box with a number of possibilities.
Perhaps, a tiered planter would give a corner some height for that trailing plant, or maybe a family of flower pot people would add a little more personality to the back deck. You can even give them a marbled design. The sky is truly the limit with this outdoor DIY project.
What is terracotta made from?
Terra cotta is a clay-based porous material that is used in sculpting and in flower pots – usually unglazed and dull brownish-orange color. This porous material can really soak up paint so be sure to keep reading for my recommendations on the right paint to purchase for your project.
Typically, these pots are relatively inexpensive in comparison to “designer” brands found at big box home improvement stores. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and styles for all of your planting dreams.
What kind of paint do you use on terracotta?
There are two options for paint: patio paint or spray paint.
Personally, the best product I have found for terra cotta projects is Patio Paint. It is specially formulated to work on the porous surface and will generally cover a pot well with just two coats (depending on the color). This method is best for planting or pots that will be outdoors.
If you are looking to paint terra cotta for indoor craft projects, grab some spray paint or regular acrylic paint! It will cover well and give you a quick surface to make your crafts.
We’ve even turned them into gumball machines!
There are so many different ways to customize these planters!
How to Paint Clay Planters
Did I mention you can also reuse clay pots? Make sure you clean out any dirt or critters first. Then, allow them to dry completely before painting.
Since terracotta draws moisture away from the soil, paint the pot inside and out to retain more moisture for your plants. Skipping this step may result in moisture seeping through and bubbling the paint on the outside.
Apply paint to your pot either in a single color or mix and match paints for a marbled look. I find that I need at least 2 coats on any clay pot. For lighter colors, you may find that you need 4 or more coats for adequate coverage. Allow to dry completely between coats of paint and be sure to follow all directions on the paint that you are using.
You can also add decorative paint on top of your first base coat. Consider adding patterns or even faces to make plant people!
After painting, make sure the pots aren’t exposed to moisture for 72 hours. That means, no planting until the 72 hours is up! This will ensure that your paint lasts a really long time.
A few more tips on how to paint terra cotta:
- Apply Patio Paint when temperatures are between 45 and 85 degrees F.
- Terra cotta is great for colder climates as it draws away moisture from the plant and prevents “freezing” the soil.
- Because it is porous in nature, plants in clay pots may require more frequent watering.
- Do not use inside birdbaths or fountains as the paint is toxic for animals and humans if consumed.
Get creative with this project to spruce up your space. I can’t wait to see the designs you create. Grab your Patio Paint and start on some great projects for your home today. Painting terracotta pots is so easy and can yield some amazing results.