Up-cycled Planter ~ From plain to Mediterranean style
Updated: Jun 24
Before & after
Up-cycled Mediterranean Planter
Project and photos by Maddylane
Hands-on time: approximately two hours and a half.
Total time: Plus drying time of 2 hours for the paint, overnight drying for the undercoat, silicone and varnish.
Skill: Moderate. For easy variations, see project variations below.
Materials & tools:
- Large exterior planter (old or new)
- Scrub brush and abrasive cleaning products, water
- Sanding block in a medium grit
- Ceramic filler undercoat by Pébéo
- 4 acrylic paint colours, by Patio Paint (permanent and waterproof acrylic paints for outdoor decorating, available at craft stores)
(I used the following colours, Sunflower yellow, Geranium red, black and copper for decorative accents around the braid and center bands of the planter)
- Glaze medium and 3 cups or small jars for the glaze mixtures
- A 7 cm paintbrush to paint the planter, and a smaller brush to paint the braid and the band of the planter
- Clear silicone glue, rubber gloves and a spatula or a Popsicle stick
- Decorative pebbles in black, ruler and pencil or chalk
- Washed decorative flat black stones
- Exterior varnish, brush-on format
Renew a weathered exterior planter to give it a lively Mediterranean look. This planter’s revitalized look consists of a good cleaning, applying a glaze mixture in vibrant colours and then adorned it with black decorative pebbles and rocks. By applying glaze instead of just paint to this planter gives it a luminous quality and allow its natural characteristics and texture to come through. This is great way to add colour interest and style to your exterior and garden décors.
Start by giving the planter a thorough cleaning using a scrub brush, and soapy water. To get rid of the greenish mildew stains use some Vim cleaner. Brush and rinse it well with clean water and let it dry.
With a medium grit sanding block, lightly sand the entire surface of the planter. This will prepare the surface for painting and will also get rid of hidden dirt and hard to wash off green residue. Wipe it with a clean cloth. Cover the outside and inside of the planter with the Ceramic filler undercoat to make the porous surface waterproof, wait 24 hours before painting.
Use three parts glaze to one part acrylic Patio Paint for the glaze mixture. Prepare a glaze mixture for each colour in separate plastic cups or small jars and mix well with a stick. Start by painting the bottom part of the planter. Dip the paintbrush with mixture, remove excess paint and apply to planter. Repeat the same process to apply the next two colours. Paint the center band black or the same colour of the pebble stones you plan on using, leaving the borders unpainted. Then paint the top part of the planter and the brim leaving the braid around the brim unpainted. Let dry for 2 hours.
Measure the circumference around the planter center band, and mark where you want to place the flat stones. (I placed them in intervals of 8.5 cm). Apply clear silicone to the back of each stone and apply them to the band. Put a towel on your work area to protect the paint finish and place the planter on its side, this will make applying the pebbles easier. Work on an 11 cm area at a time, squeeze silicone glue onto the center band and spread it with a spatula or Popsicle stick. Take a hand full of small pebbles and apply to area covered in glue, press pebbles into place, rotate planter and repeat until the band is completely covered. Fill in any gaps, and let dry and set overnight.
For the decorative copper finishing touch around the braid and the two center borders; dap a cloth with copper paint, remove excess paint on a blotter paper and rub it on lightly and randomly leaving some the planters natural colour exposed. Let dry for two hours.
Apply two coats of exterior varnish, letting dry between each coat and then let it dry completely. Wait 48 hours before putting it outdoors. Add your favorite plant or flower arrangement and let the planter liven up your garden decor with its warm charismatic appeal and old world charm.
* Always bring planters in for the winter months to prevent cracking due to our harsh winter conditions. The Mediterranean colour palette consist mainly of the following bright primary and secondary colours such as, red, blue, yellow, green, orange, purple, black and white.
* Adding Styrofoam flowers trays to fill up the bottom half of the planter, some whole and some in broken pieces will help you minimize on the amount of earth fill. Doing this will also make the planter less heavy and make it easier to move it from one place to another.
* For ease while you work, I recommend you do this project on a sawhorse or on a work bench.
Variations: For an easier version with a similar look of the above project for less than half to cost; simply paint the planter in vibrant patio paints, omitting the undercoat, the glaze, the pebbles and the stones, just rub on the gold decorative accents, and, once dry, apply exterior varnish. A more adventurous project would be to add a mosaic design in the center band with broken Mediterranean style pottery and paint to your planter in similar colours. Try your own variations, a series of planters in assorted sizes and colours can be quite captivating.
To view more garden make it yourself projects, visit www.maddylane.com
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