How to Spray Paint Ceramic to Upcycle Garden Statues & More!

How to Spray Paint Ceramic to Upcycle Garden Statues & More!
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Ceramic is one of those things that people think you can’t spray paint, but they’re wrong! I know because I spray paint ceramics all the time! Let me show you how to spray paint ceramic!

It’s Kind Cute

I’m always looking for garden pieces to decorate my yard. I have 5 acres that feel so empty.  Slowly (like worse than a snail) I’ve been figuring out how to decorate my outdoor spaces.  I’ve installed fencing and little vignettes around the acreage starting at the house.

Eventually I hope to make all these areas cohesive and my yard to be beautiful. Baby steps!

So have you ever found a fantastic little garden statue at the thrift store. Or what would be a fantastic garden statue if  it hadn’t either been painted by someone’s grandma in the 1980’s or it was left out in the sun too long. Both make that cute little garden figurine less appealing.

It happens to me all the time!

cute cherub before
Cute but not what I wanted

I found this adorable little angel, but it was covered with a 1980’s speckled paint finish that I don’t find appealing. If that’s your jam then don’t come at me. I’m not telling you that you can have it in your yard but I wanted something cleaner.

speckled ceramic finish
Not what I wanted

That’s really strange to write because I’m the queen of bright colors.  Seriously I LOVE color, but I wanted this glossy little cherub to be white.

I also located another owl figurine. I think I’ve painted 20 of these things by now. It’s always the same sad looking owl and it usually costs me between 99 cents and $2.99 depending on the store I find them in.  This ceramic is textured and matte.

ceramic owl
Derpy little owl!

You’ll find loads of these ceramic figurines at thrift stores.  Everything from angles to birds can be found for a few dollars. The only problem is they’re very dull.  I snap them up and either give them a coat of white or some bright color (seriously bright colors are my thing!) and I sell them in my shop. Or people in my family claim them. I think most of my family members have now adopted one of these owls.

Let’s Paint Some Ceramics!

Both of the pieces I decided to spray paint were dirty and I mean ick! I scrubbed both of them with a toothbrush to make

cleaning cherub butt
cleaning cherub butt

sure I got in all the little nooks and crannies (an his little butt crack – yes, I felt weird doing it).

The spray paint isn’t going to stick to ceramics that are dirty.  The paint will just flake away so you’ll want to sure your pieces are clean and grease free.

Rinse them with clean water and dry them off.  Don’t even think about painting them until you know they are good and dry! The water will also cause the paint to flake.

I know you’re excited but just learn from my mistakes on this one. Don’t move to the next step until the piece is dry.

Grab Your Spray Paint!

Whether your ceramic is glossy or the textured kinds that figurines can sometimes come in; they can both  be spray painted without much effort.  If you use a product like Rust-Oleum 2X then you won’t have to take the extra step of priming the ceramic. The primer is built into this paint and it covers like a dream so it’s my go to for spray painting anything not just ceramics.

Take whatever you want to paint outside!

I know it says “or a well ventilated area” but don’t try to paint inside.  The over spray will go everywhere! Over spray is just the paint that does land on the piece you’re painting.

People have recommended to me spray boxes or the DIY version of a spray box. Hang on while I laugh, because I’m remembering the time I tried it. I ended up with blue over spray all over my face because the box just redirects the over spray. Right into your face.

Please go outside. Please.

I set mine up on two sawhorses with 2×4’s on them so I can move around the piece while I paint.

Spraying the ceramic angel
Spraying the ceramic angel

Now you just spray in short strokes. Starting off the piece and sweep across. Stop spraying the paint off the piece.  Do that all the way around until it’s covered.

paint that ceramic owl
paint that owl!

If you need a second coat of paint then wait for about 15 minutes or so before applying the second coat.

That should be all you need! I have never needed more than two coats of spray paint. Especially not when I use the 2X paint.

Spray Painted Ceramic Cherub
He’s So Cute Now!

I love my little cherub now! Look how adorable he is! Now he’s more of what I wanted.

Spray Painted Ceramic Owl
This little guy turned out pretty cute too!

If you are still nervous about the process of spray painting on ceramics watch the video below. I’ll show you how these pieces were painted.

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Many blessings to you all!

~S

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