You know the saying “there’s more than one way to skin a cat?” .. Eww!! .. who-ever came up with that?! .. Let’s just say, there’s more than one way to peel a potato 😉 .. Either way … you get the point! When it comes to a terracotta planter, there’s a LOAD of different things you can do to make it fit in with your decor!
Need some more ideas? Check out some of the projects on the blog where we’ve used terra cotta pots! What about these funny people planters for a bit of summer fun? Or this Etsy inspired punny planter! Want another seasonal project? Check out this Christmas vintage gumball machine. And last but not least this planter that had a makeover with some WoodUbend.
Anyway, for this project I’m using some cheap napkins to create a unique masterpiece! Here’s what I used and how I made it:
What you need for your napkin terracotta planter
A terracotta planter pot – I got mine from the local garden centre. I can’t remember what I paid, but it would be less than a pound!
Some napkins – I used these exact ones
Mod Podge (this is the original one) or use the outdoor one for additional protection.
White Acrylic Paint
Some brushes – I love these sponge brushes
A good primer
Some cling film
A nail file
Waterproof sealant (optional)
how to create your planter
Whether you are using your planter indoors or outdoors, if you are using it for a real plant, I would always recommend priming your pots before doing anything with them. I have used the all purpose primer in the past and it has worked perfectly. Make sure you prime the inside as well as the outside of your pot. Because terracotta is porous, any water can seep from the inside to the outside and may ruin the paint work you’ve worked so hard on.
You will see that on this occasion I did not prime my pots. I will be using these for some artificial plants instead. You can catch the reason (and watch me make this project on video on my Facebook Live) here!
Once you have primed your pots, give them a coat of light coloured paint. I like to have a bright background when I am using napkins to Mod Podge as it gives a much lighter finished effect. I used a normal white acrylic paint, but you can use acrylic emulsion or chalk paint for this step.
putting the napkin onto your terracotta planter
Start by separating your napkins so they are ready to use. Whether you have 2 or 3 ply napkins, you will only need the top layer!
Once you’ve painted your pots and left them to dry, grab your brush and Mod Podge. I used the normal matt Mod Podge for this step. Add a generous layer of Mod Podge to the pot and carefully place the top layer of your napkin onto the area. Try to apply it as smooth as possible to prevent any wrinkles. Take a piece of cling film or a plastic bag and carefully smooth out as many of the wrinkles and air bubbles as possible. Don’t worry if you can’t get it completely smooth! We’re not looking for perfection!
To get rid of any of the excess of your napkin that is overhanging the edges, take an emery board nail file or a sanding block and carefully hit the napkin on the edge of the pot. Doing this should give you a perfect edge where you will be able to peel away the excess napkin. Do this both at the bottom of the pot and around the rim of the top. You can see me in action doing this on the Facebook video!
Go back to your Mod Podge and apply the next layer right next to the napkin that you’ve applied. Repeat the same process. I tried to line up the napkin as best I could, but because of the fairly hectic pattern it didn’t show too much if it was slightly imperfect! Smooth it down and follow the same process of getting rid of any of the excess with your nail file.
You’re nearly there!
For the last napkin I just went over the top of the crossed over napkins. (Sorry, I forgot to take a photo of it!) Here’s the Mod Podge preparation before sticking down the final napkin (that I cut into the right shape).
What I did get a pic of was a bit of a “mishap” that I had and how I covered it up. I went in a bit heavy handed on one of the napkins and one of the bits came off. I just cut a small piece of napkin to size and Mod Podged it over the top. You will hardly see it when it’s all dried and done.
Once everything is dried, give it another 2 or 3 layers of Mod Podge to project it. If you are using it (like I am) for indoors and artificial plants (or anything that will not get it anywhere near water), then normal Mod Podge will be fine.
However, if you are placing it outdoors, I would recommend using the outdoor Mod Podge for additional protection. Even then, make sure to read the instructions fully as it’s highly water resistant, but not 100% water proof. If you need it fully protected, I would recommend finishing it with a waterproof sealer such as this one which is also available in a matt finish.
I left the top rim with a slight terracotta peeking through the white paint. But of course you can give it as many coats as you want to cover it, if that’s what you prefer!
There are a few wrinkles left in the material but I think this adds to the “fabric feel” of the pot. If you prefer, you can sand these down when the Mod Podge is completely dried. They will turn “white” and add to a bit of a “worn” look.
I love how the pot adds to a summery beachy feel – even on this rainy day!
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