Hey friends! Spring is just around the corner, which means it’s almost time to start working in the garden. It also got me thinking about getting a few plants for indoors. The problem was I had nil for attractive planters. I did have a few somewhat aged terra cotta pots, but they still had a bold color to them which I knew wouldn’t work well in my mostly-neutral decor.
So what’s a girl to do? DIY some terra cotta pots to look aged, that’s what!
In this tutorial I will show you how to get the aged waterline look to your terra cotta pots. There are several different ways to do this (and some don’t even use paint) but this is the way that has worked best for me.
- DecoArt Americana Decor Chalky Finish Paint in Everlasting White (where to buy)
- DecoArt Americana Decor Chalky Finish Paint in Enchanted (where to buy)
- DecoArt Americana Decor Creme Wax in Clear (where to buy)
- DecoArt Americana Decor Creme Wax in Deep Brown (where to buy)
- FolkArt Home Decor Chalk and Wax Brushes (where to buy)
- plastic gloves (optional – if you don’t want paint on your hands)
- terra cotta pots in the size of your choice
- paper plates
- soft rags (cotton works best)
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When applying paint to the pots (except for the first whitewashing coat and the wax coats) use a tapping motion with your brush. This will make the finished result look less painted on and more realistic by avoiding brush strokes.
Also when applying paint to the pots (except for the first whitewashing coat and the wax coats) use a “dry brush”. What I mean by a dry brush is to dip the brush into the paint and then brush it on a paper plate until there is just a little paint left on the brush. This makes the pots easier to handle while you paint them and also helps to avoid the painted-on look.
In a separate container, make a bit of whitewash by mixing a bit of the Everlasting White paint with a bit of water to get a milky consistency. You won’t need much paint at all – all I do is dip my brush in the paint jar to get some paint on it, then add a little water in a container (I use washed yogurt containers that I keep for mixing paint) and mix it together, adding a little more paint or water if I need to in order to get the milky consistency I want.
Paint the pot with the whitewash working in sections and then wiping each section with a rag. This will tone down the terra cotta color. You do not have to wait for the whitewash to dry to go on to the next step (you can, but you don’t have to).
Using a tapping motion, paint the bottom 1/4 of the pot with the Everlasting White paint. Do not wait for it to dry before the next step.
While the Everlasting White paint is still wet, and again using a tapping motion, paint over the top half of the Everlasting White paint with the Enchanted paint. This allows the paint to mix together a bit to create a more natural finish.
Once the paint is dry to the touch (this should only take a few minutes if you’ve been using a dry brush), brush on the Deep Brown wax, working in sections and wiping off each section with a clean rag as you go. Once the wax is dry to the touch, brush on the Clear wax, again working in sections and wiping off each section with a clean rag as you go.
Feel free to play with where you apply the paint as well as trying other colors you like. For instance, you can apply the paint all over the pot instead of the bottom 1/4 of it to give the pot a mossy look. Experiment with different colors and finishes and have fun! And don’t worry about “messing it up” – if you get to a point where you don’t like it, just soak the pot in warm water for a bit and the paint will come off easily with soap and water. Allow the pot to dry thoroughly and try again.
I planted ivy in my freshly painted pots and used them to give a fresh spring look to my buffet table that we use a wine bar when we’re entertaining.
Thanks so much for stopping by and checking out my tutorial on how to age terra cotta pots with chalk paint! If you have any thoughts or questions, please don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section below – I always love hearing from my readers!