Turn Ordinary Flower Pots into Extraordinary

Terra Cotta pots have always been a popular way to showcase your beautiful plants and flowers. They can be used indoors and outdoors, and are relatively versatile and less expensive than finished clay pots at the home improvement store, but let's face it, they can be quite boring! Here are a few tips to add character and artistic flare to your ordinary pots.


Painting flower pots is an obvious solution to add individuality and personal style to regular clay pots. However, to ensure durability of the artwork, and to keep pots waterproof and safe from the elements (if displaying outside) certain steps should be followed. Wash your clay pot thoroughly before you begin painting, and allow it to dry completely in the sun for a full day. The paint will not adhere to the clay properly if it is not completely dry. Use acrylic paints to create borders, stencil patterns, or sponge art.

You can also be creative with dark, bold colors. Paint your pot with a coat of dark, bold acrylic paint. Then, experiment with different metallic acrylic paints, mixing equal parts of metallic paint and water and coating your pot with it using a sponge or rag. Let it dry and you are ready to paint the pot however you like. Be sure to coat the inside and outside of your flower pot with a few coats of clear polyurethane sealer once you have finished painting. This will keep any moisture out of the clay and will give emphasis and a nice shine to your painted designs.


It can be very decorative and quite a conversation piece to have a collage of photos, fabric, decorative paper, or tissue paper on a clay pot for an indoor plant. Start by preparing your pot by washing and drying it, as described in the "painting" instructions. Glue on your paper items, as desired, with a decoupage medium. Seal your finished work with an additional coat of decoupage over your finished flower pot, inside and out. Complete your pot with trinkets such as, buttons, ribbon, or decorative costume jewels.


Mosaic art can be somewhat time consuming, but flower pots that have been decorated in this way can be quite appealing. This is a favorite technique of many people because it is such an effective way to express personal style. It adds texture and depth to the pot, as well as color and design. As always, before decorating your flower pot, be sure to wash it well inside and out, and allow it to sun-dry completely before attempting to decorate. Mosaic tile, floor tile (which can be carefully broken with a hammer), flagstone, sea shells, or half marbles can all be used for a beautiful design. Arrange your mosaic, starting from the bottom of the pot and work your way up to the top, using craft glue or hot glue to secure the material that you choose into place. Allow it to dry completely. This can take up to 24 hours, depending on which glue you decide to use.

Next, mix sanded grout according to the package instructions. Using plastic gloves to protect your hands from the grout and any sharp edges from the mosaic, gently spread the grout over the entire outside surface of the pot, completely covering the mosaic. Use your fingers to gently press, making sure to fill all the cracks between pieces. Allow to dry for one hour.

Now you are almost finished! Using a soaked sponge, apply gentle pressure to the mosaic to rinse away any excess grout. Allow to remain drying for an additional two hours. Once the grout is completely dry, use a moist terry cloth to remove any grout that may have dried on the mosaic pieces. Then spray the entire outside and inside surface of the pot with a coat of clear polyurethane to create shine and protection for your new masterpiece.

Happy Crafting!

by Mandi June Henderson