10 Ways to Dress Up Terra Cotta Pots

Learn how to transform basic terra cotta pots into designer-worthy planters with these easy-to-follow DIYs.
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April 16, 2015

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Abigail Barnes

Floral Decoupage

Make a feminine vessel dressed in your favorite hues. Here's how: Update a basic terra cotta pot with a coat of flat paint. Once the paint has dried for at least six hours, apply a floral applique on the surface of the pot using Mod Podge.

Peeled Paint Effect

Give your flower pot a poppy yet rustic update with a peeled paint treatment. Here's how: First, apply a thin coat of oil-based primer to the surface of the pot. Allow a full day for the primer to cure, then use a small foam roller to apply the base color to the pot. This is the color you want to see peeking through as an accent. After the paint has dried for a full day, rub a bar of soap across the surface areas where you want to see the peeled effect. Once the paint has loosened, apply the top coat of paint over the area using a new foam roller. Ensuring the coat is even, let it dry for a full day before sealing with polyurethane.

Patterned Moss

Give your pots a garden-chic look with sheet moss. Here's how: Cut sheet moss to size, then fit it around the pot. Next, use chalk to mark a pattern directly to the moss, then cut it out using a utility knife. Apply the moss directly to the pot using spray adhesive or hot glue.

French Whitewash

Update your terra cotta pot with a French country look. Here's how: Dilute two-parts flat white paint to one-part water, then coat the pot with a paintbrush. Next, use a detail brush and stencil to mark a design or emblem onto the pot. Once dry, seal the painted design with polyurethane.

Two-Tone Geometric

Terra cotta pots can take on an industrial, retro vibe with a two-toned geometric treatment. Here's how: Paint the entire pot a solid color. Once dry, use painter's tape to mark a line or shape. Next, apply silver or gold leaf or a contrasting paint color to the non-taped area. Once dry, remove the tape, then coat the entire surface with polyurethane.

Rustic Wood Chips

Give your terra cotta pot a rustic, woodsy update by covering its shell with small wood chips. Here's how: Starting from the bottom, apply wood chips in layers and continue to work your way up, securing the chips in place with hot glue.

Preppy Paint

Paint and twine can add a coastal-chic look to a terra cotta pot in minutes. Here's how: Use painter's tape to mark off nautical stripes after painting the entire pot a solid color. Apply the accent color, then remove the tape when the paint is dry. Wrap twine around the top or bottom of the pot to add rustic texture.

Lace Accents

Bring a feminine, Victorian touch to terra cotta pots with lace fabric. Here's how: Cut lace doilies to size, wrap them around the pots tightly, then secure in place with spray mount.

Antiqued Metallic

Bring a vintage European look to your terra cotta pot with a mix of paint and gold leaf. Here's how: First, coat the entire pot in a flat-finish paint. Once dry, apply gold leaf by removing it from its sheeting with a detail paintbrush and transferring it slowly to the surface of the pot. Any imperfections or tears in the leaf will add to the aged, vintage charm. To prevent the leaf from flaking, seal it using polyurethane.

Playful Chalkboards

Update garden pots with chalkboard paint to give them a fun, personalized look, no matter what's in bloom. Here's how: First, apply a light coat of spray primer to the pot. Next, spray two thin coats of chalkboard paint onto your pot, allowing ample dry time between coats. Rub painted areas with chalk in order to season the surface and prevent writing from being burned into the surface. Erase chalk with a dry paper towel for a smeared look or with a wet paper towel for a clean look.

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