Upcycled plant pots – give your plants a makeover!

Give tired old terracotta pots a rough-luxe appeal when you spray paint them copper – this season's colour of choice for stylish homewares

Upcycled plant pots - landscape

Transform run-of-the-mill plant pots into must-have gifts with the help of a trusty can of spray paint. If you’re looking to sell your wares, the packaging is such an important part of the sales experience, and when you sell plants in pots like these, you give them extra gift appeal, meaning you can charge a premium price.

When scouring junk shops for terracotta pots, try to find ones that are already glazed for a glossier finish and a quicker make. The warm glow of copper is so on-trend in homewares right now and looks particularly great combined with other natural materials, so these pots should be a winner. Here’s a top tip: succulents, cacti and herbs look particularly good in copper pots and are easy to look after.

And if you like this project, have a look at some of our floristry articles – we love this DIY terrarium – or how about this gorgeous planter box made from an upcycled toolbox! If you’re planning a garden party this summer, this floral centrepiece could be just the ticket!

We love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to share your upcycling or craft projects with us on InstagramFacebook or Twitter, too!

You will need:

  • 3 x terracotta plant pots (preferably glazed)
  • 1 x ribbed metallic pot
  • PVA glue
  • Paintbrush and bucket
  • Metallic copper spray paint

How to upcycle plant pots


Step 1

If your pots are glazed, then just give them a quick wash and move straight to step 2. If they are unglazed, then you’ll need to seal them with PVA glue to stop the spray paint from soaking in and giving a dull finish. To do this, mix a solution of half PVA glue and half water in a bucket and stir well. Lie a piece of thick cardboard onto your work surface and place the plant pots on top. Paint a thin coat of the PVA/water mix onto the outside of the plant pots – make sure you brush out any drips so the surface is as smooth as you can get it. Leave to dry for at least three hours (overnight is preferable).

Step 2

Following the manufacturers’ instructions on the spray paint can, lightly coat the plant pots, one at a time, with a thin layer of metallic paint. Spray paint dries very quickly, so be vigilant about looking for drips as you work and wipe away any that appear straight away, using the end of your paintbrush. To minimise drips, it’s best to build up thin layers of paint rather than applying one thick layer.

Step 3

Once you have applied three or four thin layers of spray paint and have achieved a rich, glossy look, then leave the plant pots to dry completely before planting. If you’re planting directly into the pots, then you’ll need to add about an inch of stones or gravel at the bottom of the terracotta pot to make a drainage layer.

Upcycled plant pots - detail

We hope you’ve enjoyed this quick and easy tutorial on how to upcycle plant pots. If you like floristry and upcycling, why not make these upcycled herb pots or how about this DIY terrarium?