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DiY: Flower Pot Makeover

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I may not have a green thumb when it comes to keeping houseplants and flowers, but like all Turks, I love growing herbs around the house. From spring through summer, we Turks fill our balconies, terraces and tables with mint and globe basil. In Western Turkey, along the Mediterranean and Aegean coasts, you will find potted herbs growing almost everywhere you look: houses, offices, restaurants and bars. Not only do they look and smell nice, but the globe basil especially keeps mosquitoes at bay.

Time: 1 Hours Cost: $0 Difficulty: Easy

Each year around this time, I start filling our deck with potted herbs, so I can be reminded of my homeland. But this year the weather is a bit late to reach normal Spring temperatures, so I thought I could use my time prettying my plain-Jane flower pots. As I couldn't wait to start my little project, I forgot to take before pictures of all. But thankfully I remembered to take the before picture of the small pot =)

Last year I found one plastic and four terracotta pots at Put & Take. I refinished one of the terracotta pots and the plastic one last summer but didn't have time to refinish the other three. As I wanted all the pots look like a set, I decided to go with the same aqua hue that I used last year. If you would like to use it in any of your projects, you can find the picture of the color code on our blog.

After preparing my homemade chalk paint (you can find the homemade chalk paint recipe on our blog), I washed the pots of dirt and debris and let them dry. Once they were dry and ready for painting, I started brush painting with a half loaded chip brush. While I didn't cover all the surface with paint, I also didn't choose dry-brushing because I wanted some areas to get covered almost solidly to achieve that random distressed look I was going for.

With this last pot, I happened to brush it more than I should, so it ended up looking almost fully painted. As I was going for a distressed look, I had to remove the excess paint with what I call "rubbing" technique. It is a good and easy alternative to sanding when you are painting with chalk paint. You can find more details on rubbing technique on our blog post.

As the painting and distressing was completed, it was time to pretty up the pots with different embellishments.


As my pots were finished, it was time to plant some herbs. Unfortunately I couldn't find any globe basil or mint in HomeDepot or in our local nursery. I think the weather is not yet warm enough to have a good selection of potted herbs. But I was lucky enough to find some thyme, Thai basil and lemon balm, so I planted those in my refinished pots for now.

Here are my jewels!..
...and my pots are not bad either!
I can't wait to show our deck to you in the summer: I line up these beauties next to each other at the corner of our deck, and in the evening breeze it feels like heaven with all that beautiful scent in the air.

Here are some close-up pictures so you can see the details better.



And here they are, all together, including the ones I did last year. Having them all the same color helps displaying them as a set, but the different finishing details breaks the monotony.



I hope you liked my jewels and their new pots.

For all the details on stenciling, rubbing technique, paint color code and much more please visit our blog post from the link below.


Handan, xo

To see more: http://thenavagepatch.com/refinishing-old-flower-pots/

  • Hannah V
    Hannah V Brooklyn, NY
    on Apr 13, 2016

    Oh my goodness I would buy these in a heartbeat! I can envision just where id put them in my little backyard. Stunning job you guys!! <3

  • Mary Beth
    Mary Beth
    on Apr 13, 2016

    There are absolutely beautiful!

  • Time With Thea
    Time With Thea Canada
    on Apr 13, 2016

    I agree with @Hannah V ! Oh my goodness these are stunning! My brain is racing with how I want to also do a project like yours. Thank you so much for the inspiration!!!

  • Time With Thea
    Time With Thea Canada
    on Apr 13, 2016

    One more comment/question. You said you painted plastic and terracotta pots. I can't tell the difference. Do you have a preference?

    • @Time With Thea If you checked the blog post you will see one pot has Schlumbergera Truncata (aka Christmas Cactus) in it. That one was a plastic pot and it was in fact a dirty cream colored very ugly pot. First I painted that with a a mixed up terracotta color (I just mixed some red, light brown, orange, normal brown). After waiting 2-3 days I painted it with this light aqua color... did the rubbing style distressing and the end result was no different than distressed terracotta pots. But I always prefer having terracotta pots, because they are better for the plants/herbs as the terracotta material is natural. Also all natural materials age better, meaning more beautifully, than unnatural materials. So in time (I am guessing in 4 years or so if I keep them outside during CT winters) these terracotta pots will still look awesome as each one of them will age showing unique patina, where plastic one is going to start showing ugly plastic behind.

  • William
    William Burbank, IL
    on Apr 14, 2016

    It's amazing that terracotta once was the norm. People would wait years for it to age naturally. Then people started to "help" in the aging/distressing process. Manufacturers took note of what the public was doing and started to do it themselves and it caught on. You did a great job. One notices the pot, but eye focuses on the plantings and the pot is the jewel.

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