July 27, 2023

How to Prep and Paint Terracotta Pots

How to Prep and Paint Terracotta Pots

How to Prep and Paint Terracotta Pots

Painting terracotta pots is a fantastic way to spruce up your garden. Whether you’re thinking bright and cheerful colours or chic and understated hues, painted pots are a quick, easy and affordable way to customise your outdoor space.

But like all outdoor painting projects, terracotta pots require a specialised approach. As a highly porous material, terracotta must be properly sealed before painted. This is the best way to achieve a professional and long-lasting finish.

In this video, Laura Phillips walks you through how to prep and paint terracotta pots, so they last.

What you’ll need

Preparing your terracotta pots

Preparation is usually minimal if you’re using a brand new pot. A quick wipe down with a damp cloth to remove dust and debris is all that’s needed.

You’ll need to put in a little more prep work for older pots covered with moss, soil or existing paint. Mix up a batch of concentrated sugar soap and warm water to scrub down your pot. Allow to dry thoroughly before moving onto the next step. Remember, terracotta is a porous surface and absorbs lots of moisture so the drying process may take longer than you think.

Sealing your terracotta pots

After cleaning, the next step is to seal the inside of your terracotta pots. This is important as moisture can seep through terracotta when you water your plants. Moisture can quickly cause your external paintwork to flake off the surface of the pot. You’ll also need to seal the outside of the pot for extra protection from the elements. Don’t forget the base!

Laura uses Frenchic Finishing Coat to create a seal. It’s touch-dry within 15-30 minutes, which means you can start on your second coat ASAP. If you like, you can apply a third coat for extra protection.

Painting your terracotta pots

When you’ve cleaned and sealed your pots, it’s time to start painting. The key is using a high-quality paint. Weatherproof Al Fresco paint isn’t just water resistant. It’s UV resistant and incredibly durable – perfect for gardens and outdoor spaces.

The smooth and creamy formula glides onto all surfaces, including terracotta. It’s also eco-friendly with minimal VOC content, meaning it’s kind to your garden and the planet! Even better, it’s self-levelling, self-priming and self-sealing.

Choose from 20 bestselling colours, including classic earthy tones and vibrant hues. Keep an eye out for exciting, limited edition colours! The Al Fresco range is amazingly versatile and suitable for all kinds of applications. This makes it easy to match your terracotta pots with your front door, garden furniture and even your wooden decking.

Once you’ve painted the outside of the pot, move onto the inside. Aim for a couple of inches of coverage down from the rim. No need to paint the entire inside as soil most of the pot will be filled with soil. Finally, move onto the rim. Saving the rim for last is a clever way to avoid getting paint on your wrist.

Leave to dry for a couple of hours before moving onto your second coat. Al Fresco range paint is touch-dry after two hours. However, it needs a good three weeks to fully cure. Ideally, wait a week or so before filling with soil and potting your plants.

Getting the best results

Remember, preparation is the secret to a successful job! For the best results don’t take shortcuts when it comes to your prep work. With Frenchic Finishing Coat, you can achieve professional results on all kinds of surfaces, including terracotta.


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