Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Tutorial Tuesday: Teacup Planter

(I am still working on a way to make this tutorial workable; please don't try unless you know how to keep the paint from bubbling.)
This project was one I was really excited for but unfortunately had a few snags. I didn't let those stop me though, I persevered! I was so determined to make a pretty pot for my plants I accidentally murdered one of them...I am a bad plant mommy, but you know that if you've read my Leibster Award Facts. I've got to try though, my thumb wants to be green!

 The Supplies:

  1. Ceramic Teacup Blank
  2.  Plants  
    1. Trailing Ivy
    2. California Sunset Succulents
  3. Assorted Enamel Acrylic Paint (The purple was fine, but the gold and white needed to be replaced with Folk Art Enamel too, you'll see why below)
  4. Sponge Brush
  5. Painters/Masking Tape
    Not Pictured:
  6. Small Detail Paintbrush
  7. Dirt (for re-poting)

    The Equipment:

    1. Drill (and if like me you can't keep track of your chuck, check out this helpful video)
    2. Ceramic/Masonry Drill Bit ($2-5 at Lowe's)
    Truth be told, this tip is pretty strong and ceramic is pretty soft, so if you were really dedicated and didn't have access to a drill, you may be able to make the holes by hand.

    Step 1: Gather the teacup, your equipment (drill and bit), and your tape. Usually I would do drilling outside, but I couldn't find the extension cord so I ended up on a towel in the kitchen as close to the front door as I could get.

    I followed this tutorial by By Stephinie Lynn to learn how to drill holes in ceramic, which was super easy! I used two pieces of tape to mark where I wanted the holes to be and to keep the drill from slipping.

    Go slow and steady and you'll be through in no time! Repeat as many times as necessary.

    All done with the "hard" part!

    Step 2: Paint your cup a base color, I chose white. Give it 2/3 coats. Make sure to use a paint specifically for ceramics, like Folk Art Enamel

    I painted all around the outside and about 2 in. down inside the teacup.

    Step 3: I wanted a striped teacup so I used my masking tape to section off large blocks and small lines.

    I also used the masking tape to mask the rim, foot, and handle of the cup. Those are going to be painted another color.

    Step 4: I chose to paint the sections purple. 2-3 coats works for a nice even covering.

    After the tape is peeled off! Doesn't look too bad, but I fixed all the little imperfections with some white paint and a tiny brush.
    Note: The enamel paint I ended up using was a little more fragile when it came to the tape than the regular acrylic. It chipped here and there but if you're slow and careful with it, it should be fine)

    Step 5: The rim, handle and foot will be painted gold.

    Step 6: When you are happy with your cup design, go ahead and bake as instructed on your paint bottle, or let cure as needed.
    Step 7: Gather your finished cup/pot, your plants and your dirt.

    Fill up your cup part way with dirt.

    Carefully transport your plants one at a time to their new home!

    Add some more dirt on top to secure the roots firmly. Then water your plants! They're probably thirsty!

    It was about an hour or so after I watered them that I came back to check on them and found this!
    All the gold came right off! I thought for sure this was going to go on a list of craft fails as I checked the rest of the cup and also found bubbling under the white and a little under the purple. I then slapped myself in the face for not realizing this was a ceramic piece and really needed to be finished in a special way.

    I went out to Walmart and grabbed the other two colors of paint in Enamel a paint specifically for glass and ceramics! Unlike the gold, the rest of the paint didn't come off so easily, but the bubbling was an indicator that this wasn't a permanent solution. I sanded all the old paint off of the cup and started anew, repeating steps 2-5 and then following the instructions on my bottles of paint for step 6.

    When I went to re-pot my plants, I found I had killed my little ivy during the repainting phase. Hopefully that does not foreshadow the life of the other plants...

    I'm happy to say things have gone much better this time, and hopefully, you will never make the same mistake I did now! You're welcome!

     Sometimes your project just doesn't go as planned, and that's the worst. I've had a few of these on the blog, but luckily I had some posts already done so this didn't set me back like the others. How do you bounce back from a project gone wrong?


    1. That is ridiculously cute! I am a horrible plant Madre, as well, but this itty bitty thing makes me want to a chance to redeem myself! Awesome cwaft RaCh!

    2. Beautiful! I love unexpected planters. I really need to do this! Thanks for sharing.

    3. Wow! So cute! I probably would have never thought of drilling in the holes. Thanks for sharing!

    4. This is adorable and have never really seen tea pot plants like this. sorry about your first do but thats how we all learn and thanks for keeping it real!

    5. Such a cute idea! My daughter would love this project.