DIY: Marbled Terra Cotta Pots
I have been experimenting with marbling techniques lately, and decided I wanted to give marbled terra cotta a try. However, due to the texture, the material itself, and the paint consistency, my previous techniques that worked great on other materials were just not doing the trick with terra cotta (or any type of ceramic clay for that matter). I was determined to figured it out, so I experimented a bit and gave it another go – and hurrah, it worked! Now, I’m not saying this is THE best way to marble pots…I’m definitely no expert in this area, but I am very pleased with how mine turned out, so thought I’d share the process for you. Click “Read More” to find out what you’ll need and how to do it!
- Acrylic paint (white + at least 2 accent colors)
- Disposable bin
- Spare jars or containers (to mix paint)
- Paint brush
- Pot (terra cotta, or clay)
- Plastic drop cloth
- Varnish or Clear spray paint
[Note: Apologies for the lack of photos – it ain’t easy to photograph the process when you’re an one-woman team and your hands are covered in paint]
Step #1: Mix 4 parts acrylic white paint, with 1 part water. Pour paint into a disposable bin (make sure the bin is wide enough to accommodate your pot). In paint-friendly jars, water-down your accent colors (1 color per jar). Once watered down, use your paint brush to splash drops of the paint colors atop the white paint. At this point, the paint colors will slowly begin to marbleize with the white paint. You can also drag your brush through the paint to add additional lines or patterns. Honestly, just have fun and before moving on, make sure you have multiple pots to experiment with.
[Note: My first batch shown in top photo; close-up of my second batch shown in second photo]
Step #2: Once your paint bin is prepped and ready, lightly roll the sides of your pot through the paint, until the entire pot is covered. Make sure the pot just gently brushes the surface (you don’t want to over-apply the paint). To roll properly, I found it easiest to position a few fingers from my right hand inside the pot, with one finger from my left hand on the bottom of the pot. You may want to wear gloves, because this part gets messy! Once finished, allow excess paint to drip off pot and set on a plastic drop cloth, top-side down. After 10-15 minutes, flip the pot so that the top side is facing upwards. Changing around the direction while drying will allow for multi-directional movement, instead of just one-way drip patterns.
Step #3: Once dry, spray with a clear finishing spray or acrylic varnish to seal in the color. Add a few coats, allowing dry time in between each coat. And voilà, a beautiful marbled pot for some lucky plants.