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Easy Spray Paint Marbling Tutorial

Do you have old terracotta flower pots that need updating? We hate paying the price for cool, larger and modern pots! Learn how to get a marble effect using spray paint on flower pots with our tutorial.

terracotta pot with arrow pointed to same flower pot after DIY marble spray paint effect.

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We had been searching for fun DIY planter ideas for our new deck that wouldn’t break the bank. Creating DIY marble flower pots is the perfect budget-friendly DIY project.

How hard is it to do spray paint marbling?

Honestly, this was one of our fastest and easiest DIY projects to date. It is super fun to let the supplies work for you. If you are nervous, you can always experiment with different marbling techniques on smaller objects first.

How much did this project cost?

My TWO terracotta marbleized pots only cost around $6 each to make. This was because I had some leftover spray paint colors from previous DIY projects

What is hydro dipping?

Technically this technique I am sharing has a name called hydro dipping or watermarbling. Hydro dipping is when you transfer paint from the surface of water onto an object.

In this case, we are spraying spray paint on the water to create a fun design and dipping our flower pot into it to print on the surface.

white pot hydro dipped in gold paint.

The fun part about spray paint marbling is that you can do this technique on more than just painted flower pots. We really hope to try this soon on large plastic planters and think it will really work.

Read more>>>Simple flower painting ideas that just use black and white paint.

Surfaces You Can Marble

There are many items you can choose to marble and we have tried a lot of them. Consider using this painting technique on a variety of the following surfaces.

  • Glass:old jars, cups and vases
  • Ceramic:mugs, cups, decorative plates, vases and more
  • Terracotta or Clay:spraying a base coat first will help like we did in this tutorial
  • Metal: old trays and signs would look amazing
  • Paper: decorative cards, bookmarks and more
  • Plastic Containers: give those Dollar Store containers a fresh look

Just be careful if you want an item to be food safe. I would not spray paint to be anywhere near where food or your lips would touch.

Recommended Supplies

The “Before” Pot

modern terracotta flower sitting on store shelf with price tag of 3.98.

Before You Begin

Before you begin, spray paint your terracotta pots with a base color. We used white gloss spray paint with primer built-in. I did this the day before and let them dry overnight.  The terracotta pots do soak up a lot of spray paint, so be prepared for this.

Your first white coat does not have to be perfect because the marble design will cover any imperfections.

White spray painted terracotta pot sitting in grass.

Create A Paint Dipping Station

Other DIY bloggers, will tell you to use a large plastic bin. I don’t know about you, but plastic bins can be expensive. I didn’t want to ruin a bin that would cost more than my whole project.

I came up with a better DIY solution.

  1. Tape a large garbage bag inside a diaper box.
  2. Add water from a hose outside.

Now you have a waterproof dipping and marbling station ready to go.

Box with garbage bag filled with water, spray paint, tape and terra cotta pot spray painted white.

Important tip: Work quickly!!!!!! Taking the pictures to show you all how this worked slowed me down a little and the marbling on the pots would have been easier if I was not trying to document it for you. But I love inspiring all, so I made it work…quickly!

How To Do Spray Paint Marbling

Step 1: Fill With Water

Fill a container or homemade marbelizing station with water.

diaper box with bag filled with water, flower pot, spray paint, hose and packing tape on grass.

Step 2: Spray First Color In

Spray gray spray paint in water.

Step 3: Spray Second Color (Optional Third Color)

Spray black and then gold spray paint. If you feel comfortable spraying two cans at once, go for it.

gold spray paint in water in box with garbage bag.

Again, work quickly!

Step 4: Move Paint Around

As fast as you can, take a skewer and just move the paint around.

If the paint starts to stick to the skewer, you are moving too slowly! I used gray spray paint, but my guess is that black and gold would still give you the awesome marble design on your pots.

skewer moving around gold spray paint in water in box.

Step 5: Dip Pot

Dip the terracotta flower pots in the spray paint and water mixture.

white sprayed terracotta pot being dipped in gold spray paint in water.

Step 6: Rotate Pot

As soon as you have all three colors in, dip your terracotta pot and rotate it to cover the areas you want.

Carefully pull out the painted flower pot when done and you have a beautiful DIY marbled pot. It is really that simple of a DIY project.

Step 7: Let Terracotta Pot Dry

Drying tip

Depending on the size of your terracotta pots, you should be able to flip them over and place them on a wine bottle with the cork in to dry. As you can see in this picture, the wine bottle has a cork sticking out through the bottom of the flower pot.

This fits perfectly in the hole in the bottom of the terracotta pot.

DIY marbled pot resting upside down on wine bottle.

Step 8: Add Clear Coat

After these dried for a few hours, I then used a clear coat spray to help seal the outside.

Different Design Idea

You could also just dip half of the pot for a cool flower pot idea. We did a similar technique but used nail polish to marble mugs. This would probably be easier than trying to quickly rotate the pot to get the marbling effect on all sides.

Read More>>> Really Easy Painted Flower Pot Ideas

Final Product

Zoomed in view of gold. gray and black DIY marbled effect on terracotta pot.

If you love this painting technique, then you have to check out how we made an awesome DIY fall decoration with easy painted faux pumpkins.

How To Reuse Dipping Station

If you want to dump the water in between each dunk, go right ahead. However, I am all for not being wasteful and I am a little lazy.

hand use skewer to get out old spray paint from water in box.

If not dumping water, use a wooden skewer and a small cup to scrape off the top layer of spray paint in between each pot. As you can see, if you do not work quickly, you will be left with a not-so-great spray paint film stuck to everything.

DIY marbled painted flower pots made with spray paint.

These turned out so well that I am wondering if next, I can try to marble large plastic planters. Any ideas? I will post about it if I do attempt to take on such a huge marbling project! 

If you are like us, we sometimes have DIY mistakes! We didn’t do accidentally spray paint in extra places on this project. However, if you need to know how to remove spray paint from glass this may be helpful.

How-To FAQs

Could you use nail polish instead of spray paint?

Yes, we have made a faux marble look on white ceramic mugs before. Using nail polish will be more expensive than using spray paint to paint your terracotta flower pots.

How can you create a marble effect for DIY projects?

There are a few options you can use to get a marble look with paint. You can use spray paint, nail polish or acrylic paint dipped in water to create a fake marble.

Related Posts

We hope you loved this DIY marbled flower pot tutorial. We love that we turned a boring terracotta pot into an expensive-looking one. Now you can grab any item that needs a makeover and give spray paint marbling a try.

Follow us on Pinterest, Youtube or Facebook for more DIY inspiration!

DIY marbled painted flower pots made with spray paint.

Spray Paint Marbling Tutorial

Use spray paint and terracotta pots to create these fun marbled looking pots. No one will know how cheaply you were able to make them!
Print Pin Rate
Keyword: DIY Marbled Pots, faux marble flower pot, how to marble terracotta pots, water marbling paint technique
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Active Time: 5 minutes
Dry Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Author: Erin
Cost: under $10

Equipment

  • Large Box with plastic bag or plastic tote
  • Packing tape

Recommended Supplies

Instructions

  • Use a large plastic bin or make your own box with a large garbage bag that water can go in. You need to fill the box so that you will be able to dip your pot in it.
    diaper box with bag filled with water, flower pot, spray paint, hose and packing tape on grass.
  • Use white spray paint to put a base coat on your terracotta pot. You only need to spray a little on the inside. No need to waste spray paint.
    White spray painted terracotta pot sitting in grass.
  • Let the paint dry. It should not be tacky.
  • Use two different colors of spray paint. Quickly spray both colors in the water.
    gold spray paint in water in box with garbage bag.
  • Use the skewer to move the paint around.
    skewer moving around gold spray paint in water in box.
  • Pick up the pot and carefully dip it into the water. Roll the pot around so that all sides get covered.
    white sprayed terracotta pot being dipped in gold spray paint in water.
  • Place the terracotta pot upside down on the wine bottle so it can dry. Allow to fully dry as it should not be tacky to the touch.
  • Use a clear coat spray or
    this product with a brush to fully protect your faux marbled flower pot.
    marbled flower pots done with spray paint.

Notes

You could use any color combinations you would like with this project. You just might want to stick with colors that you know will mix well together.
Tried this Tutorial? Tag me Today!Mention @theDIYNuts or tag #thediynuts!

The DIY Project Challenge

This outside DIY project definitely was pretty simple, but there are a few catches and tips I will give you along the way! This DIY marbled pot project was perfect to add to my DIY friends in our project challenges!  

Now let’s see what my AWESOME DIY friends have created for this month’s knock-off challenge. The ladies in this group are very talented and I can’t wait to see what they have created! Let me know if you want to join us in the next round! Feel free to click on the links below to find more AMAZING inspiration. 

Joyful Derivatives: DIY Faux Marble Lamp Makeover

Kippi at Home: DIY Garden Screen Trellis

Never Skip Brunch: Anthropologie Hanging Planter

Life’s AHmazing: West Elm Inspired DIY Geometric Desk Decor 

Our Happily Ever Home: Wayfair Inspired DIY Wooden Candlesticks

Southern Yankee DIY: Knockoff Pottery Barn Floral Napkin Rings

Mama Dares to DIY: Knock-off Pottery Barn Floating Shelves

Tutorial Rating




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Jacinda

Thursday 8th of April 2021

Hello! I was wanting to do this with glass vases. I have black and grey spray paint and I already have gold acrylic paint. Do you think that would work mixed in?

Thanks!

Erin

Friday 9th of April 2021

Hi Jacinda. I haven't tried mixing the two types of paint. This sounds very interesting and we may need to try it out. I would recommend testing the hydro dipping technique on something small first (even a dollar store glass vase before testing it on your real ones). You also could see how the paints mix by doing it quickly and dipping a piece of paper to see what happens. Good luck and I would love to hear how it goes.

Maureen

Tuesday 12th of January 2021

Love the marblized pots. How much water did you use and did you empty spray cans of paint completely?

Erin

Wednesday 13th of January 2021

Hi Maureen. I put enough water in the boxes so that I could dip the flower pot completely without hitting the bottom. Also, for this DIY flower pot project you only need a quick spray of each color. You have to work very fast so you do not want to spend too much time spray the paint. Good luck with your project.

Carla

Wednesday 12th of August 2020

I tried these right away on a cement coaster. It looks good but I got a lot of air bubbles beneath the paint. Do you have any ideas why that might happen?

Erin

Thursday 13th of August 2020

Hi Carla, I wonder if you stirred (or swirled) the paint too fast with the skewer before dipping your flower pots. I may have had a few bubbles, but nothing that really ruined my design. They would have just popped and left an imprint. Did you make sure the white coat of spray paint was completely dry? The biggest issue I encountered was working quickly in the hot weather.

JENNIFER GULIZIA

Monday 22nd of June 2020

These are so fun and pretty! I can't wait to try this.

Erin

Monday 22nd of June 2020

Hi Jennifer! They are so fun! I absolutely love how quickly I was able to get a fun paint flower pot! I want to try this on large plastic pots next year.

vilma

Tuesday 2nd of June 2020

Erin, you sound like such a fun person and I would think anything done with you would be an awesome experience. The cup marbling - you can actually bake the cup in the oven and use safely for drinking afterwards. Can't remember offhand the tempreture or length of time but it is on Pinterest. I will definitely come back just to have you make me grin. Wonderful.

Erin

Tuesday 2nd of June 2020

Hi Vilma! Thanks for the kind words. I will have to look into baking the nail polished marbled cup. I have experimented with a mug decorating technique using oil-based sharpies where you bake it, so I am sure that is a similar idea.

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