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How To Use Paint Pens On Terra Cotta Pots

Terra cotta pots with yellow flowers.

This summer is all about finishing our outdoor spaces and enjoying them! Keep reading to see how to use paint pens on terra cotta pots and bring color to your outdoor space.

For the first time I attended Haven Conference this year and had the best experience! What does this have to do with outdoor spaces and color and terra cotta pots? Well, Haven is a DIY/home decor blogging conference and different brands kindly give away products for attendees to try. One of the items this year is a pack of Colorshot acrylic paint pen markers.

A blogging friend, Stephanie from Gathered In The Kitchen came up with the clever idea of a Get Your Craft On Challenge, where we use the ColorShot markers to create a project that we can all share. If you are joining from Jen at Yellow Cottage Living, thanks for stopping by! Make sure to visit all of the other amazing projects linked at the end of the article.

Colorshot Marker Pack

Pack of Colorshot brand paint markers.

If you have been following along, you may have seen our backyard One Room Challenge project. It has had a domino effect, prompting us to finish up small projects in the front and inspiring me to decorate!

In the backyard I have a lot of green and white in the landscaping and I thought it would be fun to introduce more color. Annual flowers are an easy and inexpensive way to add color in outside. Instead of the plain terra cotta pots I’ve been using lately, I thought they would look great with a colorful design.

I chose three of: the ColorShot markers from the pack for this project. Check out these fun names:

Summer Pedicure


Orange Slice

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Here’s what I used:

  • ColorShot Markers-Neon Acrylic Craft Paint Pens
  • Frogtape
  • DecoArt White Acrylic Paint
  • Terra Cotta Pots
  • Craft Paint Brushes

Option 1: Whitewash Your Pot

Clean the terra cotta surface: Before starting to paint on your terra cotta pot, make sure that the surface is clean and dry. You can use a damp cloth to wipe off any dirt or dust.

Hand holding white washed terra cotta pot.

I’m not very careful with paint. I just plop it on the pot and start brushing. I then dip the brush in water and apply a coat over the white paint.

Draw/Paint Your Pattern Over Whitewash

Hand holding yellow paint marker to paint on a flower pot.

Plan your design: Plan out your design on paper first or use stencils to guide your painting.

Note- Before painting with the markers, make sure to read the directions to shake and press the tip until paint releases. There is also a product note that tips are removable and washable.

I then attempted to make a cross hatch pattern on another pot, but I overworked it and ruined the effect.

I took some time to re-think my approach and decided to try the markers directly on the terra cotta. The Colorshot package says it is suitable for wood, metal, glass, plastic and crafts. So I figured it should work directly on the pot.

Option 2: Loose Chevron Pattern

Hand holding measuring tape against flower pot with Frog tape.

Once I pivoted to paint directly on the terra cotta, I found a sort of loose chevron pattern that I liked. I didn’t have any stencils so I used Frogtape (also a giveaway at Haven!) to provide guidelines for the dashes. You can try different sizes. Since my pot was on the smaller side, I did dashes of bout 1 inch.

Hand holding paint marker painting on terra cotta pot.

The paint applies really easily. You can be more precise and find a stencil, but I wanted to try free hand.

Start painting with the paint markers.

Hand holding measuring tape against flower pot.

With one dash done, I measured for the next.

Hand painting on terra cotta  flower pot. Frog tape on pot.

The line on left looks thicker because I had paused for the photo and pressed the marker down. The line on the right was just one stroke, so you can see how you can apply thick or fine lines according to your pressure or number of coats.

Next, Let it dry: Allow the paint to dry completely before touching it or adding another layer. COLORSHOT paint markers dry to touch in 30 minutes and then fully cure at 24 hours.

Optional – Seal the paint: To protect your design, apply a clear sealant over the paint. This will also help the paint last longer. I didn’t seal my pots, but the paint pen has lasted after being exposed to two Seattle winters!


Three  terra cotta Flower pots  painted with paint markers in modern chevron pattern. Colorshot paint markers leaning on pots.

I also tried the chevron pattern with the Orange Slice color layered under the Emoji color (right). The chevron on left is Summer Pedicure.

I am excited to try these on other projects!

Pin How To Use Paint Pens On Terra Cotta Pots To Save For Later!

Hands holding and arranging painted terra cotta flower pots on wood tray.

More Inspiration

Check out the projects my fellow bloggers came up with!

Stephanie from Gathered In The Kitchen made a fun back to school wreath.

Danielle from Faith and Farmhouse painted this cute lemon cup and coaster set.

Juliet from A Loverly Life made this super sweet pillow.

Jen of Yellow Cottage Living made this clever wreath for back to school.

Anne of Ikorn Crafts made a colorful tray for all of your taco Tuesday celebrations.

Leslie from Feet Under My Table created a cute craft for teachers to welcome back students.

Get The Colorful Look For Your Outdoor Space

FAQ – How To Use Paint Pens On Terra Cotta Pots

Can you use Colorshot paint pens on terra cotta?

So far the paint on my pots is holding up. When I planted the flowers in the pots, the soil was very wet and soaked through to the front of the pot, but the paint wasn’t affected.

Can you use Colorshot paint pens on top of a coat of paint?

Yes, on the package it states you can use multiple coats. I also tried it on the white paint, which was also acrylic, and it worked fine.

Will Colorshot paint pens work on light and dark surfaces?

Yes! This was fun to test out. I like the subtlety of the markers against the terra cotta, but I also like how they pop against the white paint.

What other materials will ColorShot paint pens work on?

Per package, the paint pens will work on metal, wood, plastic, glass and crafts.

Are the COLORSHOT pens available in other colors?

Yes, there is a pack called Rainbow and one called metallic. Some of the other participants I teamed up with used the Rainbow pack, so make sure to check out their projects.

53 thoughts on “How To Use Paint Pens On Terra Cotta Pots”

  1. I love love love your terra cotta pots! I’m thinking I need to put my paint markers back to work and copy you! …because I made another project where I spray painted my terra cotta pot black and then painted circles all over them…yours is definitely WAY cuter!!
    These flowers pots turned out so cute and are so cheerful! I love them!

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  4. These are the best! So many ideas now for painting terracotta pots to save money on pots for all the flowers and plants I want on my porches!

  5. Oh my gosh! Love, love, love these pots. I want some of those pens! I’ll have to see if I can get them here. Thank you for sharing this. Glad you had such a great time at Haven. Would love to go one year.

  6. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your colorful gorgeous pots!!!! How clever to take those pots up a few notches.
    Thanks for giving us the how to:)

  7. I love this project Marie!!! You did a great job pivoting the project. I love the chevron design you came up with. You ladies did a great job collaborating together!

  8. I love the added pops of color to the terra cotta pots-they are my favorite pots to plant in and you have inspired me to add some color to my indoor potted plants as well.

  9. I’ve never heard of these paint pens before, Marie. Thanks so much for the heads up! This project is super cute so I definitely need to check them out. They’re the perfect way to celebrate the season. Hugs, CoCo

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