Have you wondered about painting your own terra cotta pots? Specifically how easy is it to paint a flower pot? And can you do something extra fun like stencil paint on your flower pot?
If you have asked any of these questions you will be happy to know you are in the right place. And more importantly that the answer is YES, you can give your flower pots a whimsical touch. It’s easy to upcycle terra cotta pots by applying a stencil. It’s super easy to paint flower pots, and today we will be looking specifically at a cute set of stencils sent to me by Stencil Revolution. This post is a collaboration between myself and Stencil Revolution, but I purchased all the materials except the stencils. And I designed the project. My opinion is my own, and I can tell you, that I love this project! The stencils are amazing, and I’m looking forward to doing a few more stencil painted projects this summer.
First, let’s jump in the way back machine and travel into the past about 35 years. It’s the 1980’s and Madonna is the bad girl of rock, hair is so high it’s practically a performance art, and nobody went to aerobics class without their Reeboks and legwarmers. In the midst of all this New Wave craze (which I admit I still love), we were all decorating our homes in a country style that included lots of ruffles, calico, wooden geese and stenciled hoop projects. Girl, we stenciled everything back in the day! And then all of a sudden it wasn’t cool anymore, and the stencils were put away and forgotten: until recently, that is. I guess we can thank Joanna, the lifestyle influencer of the moment, for bringing us her “Modern Farmhouse” aesthetic. It’s pretty sparse compared to what we were doing in the 80s, but it does include lots of stencils!
Long story short, when Emily from Stencil Revolution wrote to me asking if I would be interested in using a couple of her stencils for a project, I was immediately interested! I decided to start with a small project since I haven’t done one of these in a while. And also, I wanted something easy for you to make! I do my best to design projects that are as pretty as they are approachable. Because what good does it do if something is so complicated only a professional can make it? That’s not fun for you, and that’s not the kind of project I’m going to share with you! This one is super fun, super easy, and fast.
Did I mention it’s also really pretty?
See what I mean? That is one gorgeous project, and it’s perfect for a Mother’s Day gift or a hostess gift at a summer party. I love cut flowers and all, but adding a personal touch to a plain flower pot and then including a live plant with a little fancy top dressing is really a notch above.
Here’s your materials list to make this project:
- Live plant (I used miniature roses and a small ponytail plant)
- Terra Cotta Pot.
- Potting mix.
- Craft paint. Make sure the color you select has enough contrast against the color of your surface to show up.
- Stencil brush.
- Paper towel.
We start with picking out our plant and the terra cotta pot to go with it. From my own experience, I found that the miniature roses grow really fast. Going up a few sizes from the plastic nursery pot will make them very happy. Get them out of that plastic nursery pot ASAP. They really don’t like being in them. And put them outside. They don’t do as well inside.
Here’s how to make this project:
- Stencil your pot.
- Allow it to dry at least 2 hours.
- Using potting soil, fill the pot the appropriate depth, and place your rose in the fresh soil. Fill around the root ball enough to hold the plant in place. Match the fresh potting soil to the top of the soil line on the plant.
- Top dress with something decorative if desired. For the roses I used dried moss that I picked up in the craft store.
That’s truly it. Stencil, pot the plant, top dress if needed and BOOM. Done.
The trick to this project is getting the stencil to look good. So let’s talk about that.
- Make sure you are holding the stencil flush to the project surface.
- Use an appropriate stencil brush.
- Dip the end of the brush into the paint and then BLOT THE EXCESS off onto the paper towel. Blotting the paint before application is the trick here. Your brush will be just about dry. Starting with a small stencil like this is the best way to learn the technique. Start small, and go onto bigger projects as your paint skills improve.
- While holding the stencil flush to the surface, stipple the blotted paint brush over the design. Also a swirling motion is good. It only takes a very little bit of the paint to do this.
- Pull the stencil away quickly and straight up and off the project surface.
- Wipe the back side of the stencil dry, if needed, with a clean paper towel before returning the stencil to the project surface to paint again.
Let’s take a good look at the supplies used in this project. The stencil I used was in reality a Valentine’s Day stencil for cookies. But I like the messages, and thought they were also appropriate to Mother’s Day.
I would recommend buying two stencils and keep one for food and one for paint if you think you might like to use the stencil on decorated cookies at some point.
Getting the right brush is important. This one worked well, and was not expensive. Most of what I see people doing online is using a sponge applicator, and I don’t think you can get a dry enough brush that way. I always stenciled using a brush like this, and my motto is, “If ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
To help you get the hang of this project, I filmed a short video. Personally, I am a visual learner, so seeing the process along with having the written instructions helps me the most.
Truly, I hope this inspires you to try out stenciling a few flower pots this summer. It’s the cutest project, and frankly, I’m kind of excited to do a few more. It’s a fun way to add a personal touch to your gardening life. And I loved getting in touch with a craft I loved decades back. I’m already thinking of what else we can make together this summer using stencils.
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