Thrifted Vase Gets a Modern Look

4 Materials
1 Hour

Have you seen the trend of the dirt vase? It's when you rub wet dirt over a vase or pot. It's such a pretty look. I've done them before, in black. But this time, I did a white version. I can't get enough of them. And with Fall on it's way, I'm excited to make even more.

Wipe your vase off


Before you start, prep your vase by giving it a good wipe. This will allow the spray paint to stick better. But don't worry to much, because you're going to get it dirty again real soon.

Next, time to make mud

Wet Dirt

For this step, I used a plant tray to gather dirt. My kids had fun finding dirt and scooping it into this tray. The neighbours might have thought we were a bit too old to play in the mud, but it was fun. After gathering dirt, add some water to it. Just enough to make it wet and slightly runny.

Spray paint your vase

Time to Spray

I used Rustoleum Ivory Bisque. Spray the vase evenly around. I gave it 2 coats. I didn't spray the base, as you won't be seeing it.

Leave it to dry

2 coats of spray

I let it dry for about 15 minutes. Just feel it before you go onto the next step, if it's still tacky, wait longer. Mine was outside on a hot summer day, so it dried pretty quickly (about 10 minutes)

Rub the dirt onto the vase

Rub the dirt on

This part was fun, I know this because I did this before. So, I invited my daughter to do the honours this time and she loved this step. My suggestion is to rub the dirt in a back and forth horizontal motion. This gives the vase a continuous look all around.

When it's all done, let it dry for about 20 minutes.

Time to wipe

Soft cloth

The last step is to wipe off the dirt. I used an old dish rag. I tried to use a damp one at first, but it was taking off yoo much of the dirt. So, I switched to a dry cloth instead which worked fine. I also used the same horizontal back and forth motion to take off the dirt. You can leave on as much dirt as you prefer. You can spray a sealer on it too if you want. But I prefer the old chippy "found " look, so I didn't do that step.

Style it up


I'm so in love with the look of the white ones. I ended up making another one, seen in the next picture, on the table next to my tall one.

Styled up


They look great styled up, you can add greenery in them too like the picture below. I'm really hoping to try this on an extra large floor vase, if I ever find one while thrifting.

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Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Jennifer
    on Sep 5, 2020

    Did you wipe off almost all the dirt? Any spray to seal it? Looks fabulous!!!

      on Sep 5, 2020

      I wiped off most the dirt, and just tried to achieve the look of a found piece. I've done 6 of these, even on lamps, and eaxh one is different

  • Joannie Sygnet
    on Sep 5, 2020

    Does the dirt continue to bump/runoff if handled?

      on Sep 5, 2020

      good question, it didn't for any of my 6 that i did. But when i clean them, I use a dry soft cloth, never a wet one

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