How To: DIY Guide – Chalkboard Paint Pots

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DIY Guide - Chalkboard Paint Pots

Welcome to the summer wehearters!

Today we have a seasonal How To, that will get your green thumb ready to start planting. Review team member Katie, who admits she is obsessed with chalkboard paint, has a super simple project (seriously, If I can do this crafty task, you can too) that will cleverly add some green to your home. ~Tyna

photos: Katie for we heart this

Here’s a How To that almost anyone can do – Creating customized, chalkboard painted pots could not be any easier for beginning DIYers. And for those with a little craft experience, this project can only benefit from fancy paint techniques, decorative trims and crafty experiments.

I made these chalkboard pots with my Mom in mind. She uses starter pots for her collection of homegrown herbs and it can get confusing (especially for me, the sous chef) to tell which plant is which when all those shoots start appearing. The beauty of the chalkboard pots (besides the green, yellow and blue hues) is that she can clearly label each plant. Then, when she transplants the herbs to larger pots, she can easily erase the old herb name and write the new one! Ready to get started?

• Chalkboard paint – I could only find this in spray paint but I’ve heard you can also find it regular acrylic (which would be much easier to use). I purchased mine at a craft store for about $7. It’s a great investment because you will find tons of fun uses for it, I promise!
• an array of paint colors -acrylic or spray paint
• clay planting pots in several sizes
• paintbrush
• masking tape
• scrap paper
• chalk

Step 1: Paint your pots with your chosen paints. Have fun and mix things up. Nothing is permanent – you can always let a pot thoroughly dry and then simply start over.

Step 2 : Once you have painted your pot(s) and it has dried, mark off the area to be painted with chalkboard paint. Do this with blue paint or masking tape and scrap paper. Here is where it pays to be as precise as possible.

Step 3: Spray (or paint) the exposed area with the chalkboard paint. You can paint the rim of a pot, the entire bottom half, create a middle strip, etc. Variation is key, aim for a collection of pots with different colors, sizes, heights and chalkboard areas. Let completely dry.

And you’re done – it’s just that easy.

Collage of DIY Guide Chalkboard Paint Pots

After I created this set of pots for Mom, I gathered a few tips to pass on to my fellow crafters:

• It’s okay to use your chalkboard paint first. In fact, you will most likely have to touch up your colored paint anyway. So it’s not a bad idea to use the chalkboard paint first, which is what I plan to do on my next project.

• You can spray a concentrated amount of the chalkboard paint onto a palette and then dip your brush in it. This will give you much more control when you touch up the lines. You could even paint the entire chalkboard area that way. I made scalloped edges on one of my pots with this technique. Just remember to wash your brush really quickly when you are done.

• You don’t have to be perfect on the inside rim because you will (hopefully) have luscious plants spilling out that will cover that area!

Beyond labeling herbs and plants, I think this idea would be great for a party. Imagine the fun treat table! You could write ‘cookies’ or ‘lollipops’ and then fill the pot with your chosen sweets. And the great part? Just erase and use again for plants or more parties!

Fellow crafters – are you obsessed with all of the possibilities of chalkboard paint? Share how you have you used this ingenious paint in the comments!


  • Katie

    Frugal. Jewelry maker. Hard worker. Creative crafter. Coca-cola addict. Reader. Curly-haired. Over-analytical. Open-minded.


  1. This is such a great idea! This project is definitely in my future. When I was little I always wanted to paint one of the walls in my room with chalkboard paint but, sadly, this never happened. I imagine that once I get my own place I’ll have a chalkboard wall or two.

  2. Love this idea! I have to do something with our many pots.. so many great ideas.. Kids would love this too!

  3. Cute! I wish my bf and I had waited one more day before we planted our window sill garden! This would’ve been perfect to decorate the pots!

  4. I love this craft so much Katie – mostly because I know I can do it – I’m a very bad (but enthusiastic) crafter. Plus, I’ve always been intrigued with chalkboard paint, but could never think of a reason to use it.

    Now if only there was a way to cure my plant killing ways. I just purchased an organic basil plant in a little pot, followed the directions that came with it (lots of water, semi sun) and promptly killed it.
    .-= Tyna Werner´s last blog ..The Office Summer Slim Down – Part 2 =-.

  5. These are so stinking cute! How cute would they be to write Happy Birthday across, plant a flower and give as a gift?

    Plus, you’ve got me thinking about all sorts of things that could be done with Chalkboard paint. I’d love to hear what you’ve done with it so far!
    .-= Stef´s last blog ..Spring/Summer 2010 – Deborah Lippmann =-.

  6. I’m glad you guys like this idea! It is easy and I love the versatility. Thanks for the comments- I hope it inspires you! If it does, send some pics over!

  7. Katie – what a great idea! I had been looking for a way to keep herbs organized and this is it…plus fun and easy on the eye…thank you for passing it on!

  8. These are adorable! We’re about to rent a new place and it has the BEST tiled counter right in front of the kitchen window that is just BEGGING for plants. I’m going to have to do this for my herbs. Not only will I be able to tell them apart, but it’s an easy fix when I invariably kill one of them and need it replaced. :-)

  9. Great post! You can pick up chalkboard paint as a paint-on at any hardware store or even Walmart (if it has a paint section). It’s a popular item so easy to find. Just ask.

    I got it in a quart size for like $8 or $13. Probably much less than a spray on from a craft store. I’m sure you paid an arm and a leg or at least in the quantity comparison.

    I’m linking to this post from btw – i’m including it in a post.

  10. DixieQuahog says:

    Cute idea! You might as well use magnetic chalkboard paint, which is also available. For a plant given as a gift, use a pretty little magnet to stick a homemade card detailing plant info and care. You could also mix in a tiny amount of sand to roughen up the writing surface just a bit, and also to make the pot easier to handle, especially for bigger pots and plants. Neat idea…totally doing this.

  11. I recently took a decorative tray, masked out the edges, and made a cute chalkboard with a ribbon to hang it up for my niece.

    The one problem I had working with it was getting the chalk to write smoothly. The can says to cover the chalkboard surface in chalk after the spray dries, which is supposed to break it in. But after doing this 3 times, it still wasn’t as smooth to write on as I had hoped. Did you have this problem at all? Any suggestions?

  12. @Jenna, maybe it has to do with the surface you’re writing on? Or the type of chalk? I didn’t have any problems with the pots but I did have problems with a chalkboard frame I made.

  13. Hmmm, maybe using a super, super fine sandpaper with a very light hand would both rough up and smooth the surface for the chalk? It might be worth a try, since you can repaint if needed.

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