I counted this year, I have 24 pots. Ummmmm. To say I enjoy gardening and plants could be the understatement of the year. I dream of just gardening (the planting part, not the weeding) from May through September. I usually phase my pots into existence, starting with some simple pansies in April and May and slowly adding in hardier annuals throughout May and June.
I’ve had many of my pots for years, and as our homes have changed - from single girl apartment to family living, so has my style. As a youngish family we are still growing and working towards our backyard paradise, and so as our style and pieces change having the opportunity to update my pots with some DIY love rather than purchasing new has been a huge cost saver. Also, I always end up with the look I love and get to pick the colours I really want.
From indoor pots to outdoor, all of these DIY flourishes can be used. And yes – totally plan to do these to all your indoor pots too.
Tape off the pattern you wish – covering any areas you don’t want with tape or a plastic bag. Because pots are round, I find plastic grocery or garbage bags work the best for covering large areas. Spray paint in thin, light coats working side to side. You can recoat as soon as it’s dry to touch (usually about 10 minutes). Your pots will need three to four coats. Trying to rush the process will only cause your paint to run and drip. Once your pots have sat for a good hour feel free to remove the tape, peeling slowly. If you want to add a second colour let your pot fully dry for 24 hours – adding tape to uncured paint will cause it to lift. I've also had good success using contact paper to do rounded patterns on my pots - give it a go.
To give your pots a real kick this summer, add rope, wood beads, feathers, or any other fun embellishments. Think of it as adding a necklace to you pot – it just finishes off the look.
Nail Polish Marbling
Now, when it comes to nail polish – cheaper is better! Mostly you don’t want to waste your good stuff, but also it has to do with adhesion and some other scientific principles, yadda yadda. I found my Joe brand (superstore) worked the best – and the flat, non shimmery polishes worked the best.
Technique – fill a dish with warm water – hand washing warm to a bit hotter. I used a disposable pie plate. To do submersion I found an old ice cream bucket. I’m also endorsing have a party in which you eat all four litres so you get to use the bucket. How fun! Girls night! Because the water isn’t hot, this is a great project to work on with your kids. My daughter is nearly six and found the submersion easier than rolling in a shallow pan.
Once you’ve got your water, slowly pour your nailpolish into the dish so that it sits on top – I swirled mine around a bit as I was pouring. The more you add the thicker the marbling will be.
Here's my favourite tutorial from Oh Joy - but I didn't use the toothpick to swirl.
It might seem tricky, and it can be finicky, but for a really interesting and creative look I definitely recommend gold leafing. I would use this technique on pots that can be easily brought indoors, or that you seal well. I used contact paper to make my triangular pattern. I probably should have left the sealant to dry a little longer before I pulled off the contact paper - it was still a bit tacky and that's why I think my lines are rough - but it still looks cool!
For my second project I taped off the bottom section of the pot and applied the gold leaf to the top. A leather wrap and this pot looks amazing. I'd love to gift some of these this summer and they'll be perfect to use inside this fall as well.
There is no special trick to gold leafing other than move slowly, follow the instructions, and get creative! I used the spray adhesive for faster application.
Make it Boho
Guilty as charged - I've embraced the boho movement. Bits of it - not all of it. I love the idea of adding three dimensional elements to our existing pieces to make them more dynamic and interesting. This year I picked up these great plastic planters from Sunnyside Home and Garden (who have in my opinion the best selection of pots anywhere in the city) and added gave them a splash of boho.
Using my drill and a template it was an easy way to add something new to our space this year. The purple pot got an update with twine and the grey pot got a leather and wood bead macrame treatment.