How to Paint Terra-Cotta Pots

Customize a plain terra-cotta pot with a paint dipping technique that's almost too easy. This is a quick way to turn a basic piece into a trendy accessory for your home.

Customize a plain terra-cotta pot with a paint dipping technique that's easy and a quick way to turn a basic piece into a trendy accessory for your home.

Terra-cotta pots are about as classic as it gets. While they look great on their own, sometimes it's fun to dress them up with a splash of color. This painting technique will make it look like you dipped the pot into a bucket of paint but without the mess. See how we used rubber bands and aluminum foil to get the look we wanted. All the steps are below, or watch the video above to see how it's done. Make one stand-out pot or several for a colorful group of plants. 

  • Working Time 1 Hour
  • Start to Finish 6 Hours
  • Difficulty         Projects Easy
  • Involves Painting

What you need

Tools

  • Large rubber bands
  • Small artist's paint brush
  • Precision knife

Materials

  • Terra-cotta pot and saucer
  • All-surface primer
  • Acrylic craft paint
  • Aluminum foil
  • Masking tape
  • Spray shellac

How to do it

Step 1 Place Rubber Band

Stretch a rubber band around your terra-cotta pot. It should be angled, so it looks like you dipped the pot in a bucket of paint on a tilt. You can get as crazy as you like with this step, If desired, use multiple rubber bands and colors. We stuck with one color to keep the project simple and clean. 

Step 2 Paint Pot

With the rubber band tight and in place, begin painting your pot. Flip the pot upside-down and paint above the rubber band, so the finished result will look like you dipped the bottom half in paint. Start painting with a white primer, and then switch to your desired color, letting the paint dry in-between coats. This will help your chosen color pop. Paint the saucer, if desired. Let dry.

Step 3 Apply Top Coat

Once dry, flip the pot over. Wrap the top unpainted portion of the pot in aluminum foil. Use masking tape to cover any gaps and to seal the foil to the rubber band. Apply 2 to 3 coats of spray shellac. This will prevent your painted pot from chipping and will ensure it lives a life as long as the plant it holds. Do the same with the saucer and let them dry.

Step 4 Remove Rubber Band

Once dry, it's time to unwrap your masterpiece. Use the precision knife to scour the paint along the edge of the rubber band to loosen it. Cut the rubber band and carefully peel it off. Remove the aluminum foil and tape as well. Now your pretty pot is ready to add color to your home or yard.

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