Terra Cotta planters are common along the road side in most cities across India. They come in various shapes, sizes, and forms including animals and gods.

I bought a pair of planters for Rs. 80 a few months ago, filled them with potting soil, and planted ivy (money) plants. A few weeks ago, itching to do something, I turned one of the planters into a decorative vase.

Terra Cotta Planter
Terra Cotta Planter

What you’ll need:

1. Brush

2. Acrylic Paint – black and white

3. Palette or a cup.

4.  Fevicol

5. Water

6. Varnish


1. I emptied the planter ad re-planted the money plant in another pot. Ofcourse, this step will not be applicable to you if you are starting with a new planter.

2. Clean the planter with soap water to remove all the sand and dirt. Soak the planter in a bucket full of water over night. This helps it to absorb less paint during the painting process.

3. Take the base paint color in a palette or cup and add a little water to it. If the paint flows freely, then you may not need to add a lot of water. Apply the first base coat with a broad brush – the ones used to paint furniture. It will be very time consuming to use the smaller round brushes. I applied a layer of black acrylic paint and let it dry for a day. I put a drop of fevicol to the acrylic+water mixture. This helps the paint in not peeling off after drying.

4. Follow it up with another layer of coat the next day, if required. Let it dry completely for another day. the drying time is usually around 6 hours during summer and can take longer in monsoon.

5.  Once the base coat has dried, paint your chosen design . In this case, I used white paint to paint stripes over the black layer.

6. Seal it with a layer of varnish finally to preserve it longer and secure the piece from dirt.

Cost of the project:

Under Rs. 100. Primary cost is that of acrylic paint bottles. Fevicryl comes at about Rs. 65 for a pack of 6 bottles. You can get your desired color by mixing the basic colors. Fevicryl also has a range of metallic colors to give a glossy finish.

Terra Cotta Planter into a Vase
Terra Cotta Planter into a Vase
Terra Cotta Vase
Terra Cotta Vase

I had so much doing this DIY project. If you’ve terra cotta planters at home, unleash your creativity. Think horizontal/vertical stripes, geometric circles, or flowers. Get started and share your creation in the comments space!


  1. Oh WOW! :) Why am I not surprised to see zebra stripes here? :D
    Nice artwork … :)


  2. laksh

    Thanks. I think I’m over the stripes addiction now. Moving over to polka dots :)

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