Heather from Southern State of Mind says her “heart gets a little flutter” when the Pottery Barn catalog arrives in the mail each season. This fall it was a rustic urn that caught her eye with it’s warm colors and distressed finish.
Keeping with her “No Spend-tember,” Heather used items she already had to recreate the look.
It’s hard to believe this now neutral and soothing vase was once bright, shiny, and floral. Ah, the wonders of paint!
First, the Vase
As with any DIY project where one of your goals is to save lots of mula, your core piece should not cost you an arm and a leg.
In this case it’s a vase. And ya just gotta go used.
This means garage sales, thrift stores and flea markets. You’re sure to be in luck though. After all, when haven’t you seen a vase (an ugly looking one at that!) every time you drop into a second-hand store?
In Heather’s case, she actually had an ugly vase already. She had no problem saying goodbye to it’s original (hideous) look and taking it through a Tuscan transformation. Perhaps you have one of these too…
And by the way, if it’s chipped or cracked, that’s all the better! Remember, you’re replicating something that’s been around the sun at least a hundred more times than you have.
Now, moving on to the really good stuff.
The Wonders of Paint
Paint and technique are what make this vase exceptional. It’s downright unique actually. One can see why Pottery Barn would charge in upwards of $100 for it’s own version. Cool on the vase. Yikes on the price.
I especially love this vase style. They call it “hand-thrown and glazed terracotta.” It’s no doubt the light paint against the darkened terracotta ceramic color, with the excessive chipping, brings about an old world vibe.
Heather even talks about how Pottery Barn noted their vase will evoke the feelings you would get going out to the Italian countryside. With this paint job, it truly does!
But this requires more than just opening a can of any ol’ spray paint in your chosen color. Let’s take a look at the special types Heather used to mimic the old-style look.
Textured Paint…a Little Secret
Heather started with a coat of white paint. She really had to cover up an old design on her vase first.
She then added a special textured paint on top of that. Then she finished by painting “on” the goldish paint to give the appearance of chipped paint.
While this works well (just check out her awesome photos!), there may be an even better, alternative way to do it.
Try this approach…
Instead of painting with white first, go ahead and paint your vase the under-color you want. For example, a terracotta hue or any kind of gold or brown that will contrast nicely with the lighter color you’re going to use.
Then…add your light, textured paint on top of that. But be sure to mask off the areas in a crooked, imperfect fashion.
Since the textured paint (which is amazing by the way!) makes a surface look just like stone, this will give you the perfect chipped off paint look with the textured raised just slightly from the bottom coat.
Heather tore painter’s tape unevenly around the bottom third to get her awesome look. Have fun being imperfect.
Heather was inspired by the Tuscan Urns and Cachepot from Pottery Barn.
Of course we’ve just been talking about one vase in this project. But clearly, you can create a whole collection of big and small sizes like in the inspiration glamour shot.
Go to Southern State of Mind for all the details. Heather keeps her tutorial simple. Why? Because this one really is simple when it comes to the steps and materials. You gotta love that.