Terra Cotta Pot people are so cute and adorable and easy to make. They are a wonderful addition to any type of garden. Just take a look at this cute little flower pot girl I recently made.
To make one this size using pots that I got on sale at AC Moore for 50% off,
You Will Need:
- 12 Clay pots - 5" for legs
- 12 Clay pots - 4.25" for arms
- 2 Clay pots - 8.25" for body
- 1 Clay pot - 8.25 for head
- 1 Clay saucer - 6"
- 1 Pool Noodle
- Jute rope - approx. 6 yards
- Outdoor acrylic paint/sharpie paint pens or terra cotta paint pens
- Accessories to decorate pots
- Glue (E6000 or non porous outdoor glue or wood glue)
- Clear acrylic sealer
*Update (2015) As a result of the harsh winter, and leaving the pot girl outside, I would use nylon rope instead of jute twine. Unfortunately, the twine deteriorated in places.
The directions might seem lengthy, but it really isn't. Once you get started, you'll be zipping through in no time.
Begin by painting the "face" onto the 8.25" head pot. I found a pattern online, copied, and lightly traced with carbon paper onto the side of the pot. Next, I filled in the eyes with sharpie paint pens and outlined the nose and mouth. I smudged paint on with a q-tip for the rosey cheeks.
If you want to paint the body and or arms and legs, now is the best time to do that. It will be difficult to go back and paint after you assemble.
You can paint the pots to look like clothes or add different designs and shapes. Any accessories, such as the apron, can be added after assembly.
Let the paint dry and then spray with several thin layers of acrylic sealer.
Mark the pool noodle foam in 1 1/2" increments and cut into 26 pieces with a large knife. You will need these to string onto the jute rope and fit into the inside bottom of the clay pots for spacing and support.
Assembling the Legs: (5 inch pots)
I braided three strands of jute rope approximately three yards long, sealing the ends with glue and taping one end to make it easier to pass through the holes in the bottom of the pots. Tie a knot (I double knotted) in one of the ends of the rope and string one of the cut noodle foam onto the rope, pushing it down to the knot. Push the taped end of the rope through the hole inside the bottom of the pot and out. The foam piece and knot should rest against the bottom of the pot on the inside. (this is the first of six pots)
Push the taped end of the rope through another piece of foam and through the inside hole of the second pot. Make sure you push the second pot all the way down so the inside of the pot is on the foam. The second pot should be overlapping the first pot a bit because of the thickness of the foam. Continue to string on more foam pieces and clay pots this way until you have all six pots lined up on top of one another.
This is the first terra cotta leg.
Leave about 12 inches of rope between the last (#6) pot and this pot. String another pot onto the rope, but face this pot in the opposite direction of the other six pots. Do this by pushing the rope into the outside hole into the pot, adding a piece of foam to the rope like before. Add another clay pot, then foam. Continue doing this until you have strung all six pots going in the opposite direction of the first 6 clay pots.
Your legs should look like two sets of 6 pots separated by rope approximately 12 inches long (in a upside down u shape). Tie a double knot in the last pot and cut off any extra rope.
Assembling the Arms: (4.25 inch pots)
The arms are made the same way as the legs. Follow the same directions for making the legs, first braiding the jute rope, using the pool noodle foam pieces and the twelve smaller pots.
Assembling the Pot Body:
Place one of the 8.25 inch terra cotta pots, right side up. Using what is left of the braided rope from the legs, wrap it under the exposed (12 inches) rope of the legs and insert it into the bottom hole of the body pot, pulling both pieces through the hole, and through a foam piece inside the pot. Double tie a knot.
To put the two body pots together, I laid everything (arms and legs) gently on their sides on a padded surface, so I could glue the two pots together with E6000 glue. This is what I had on hand - not thinking that clay pots are porous. After running a bead of glue around the top edge of each pot, I then placed the body pot with the arms upside down on top of the upright pot with the legs. And let it dry overnight. The body pots stuck together, but the glue stained the pots. This can easily be hidden using accessories.
Finally, to finish the Terra Cotta Flower Pot Girl, glue a six inch saucer over the top of the body pot (not shown) - this is optional, and place the painted face pot on top. For an added touch, flowers can be planted in this pot.
To dress up my flower pot girl, I cut out an apron from an old printed plastic shopping bag and glue it to the body. I also tied mesh tubing to the top of the face pot for a bit of whimsey.
There are so many creative things you can do with making terra cotta pot people. You can add an outfit, hat, gloves and shoes - even hair out of raffia. It's unlimited and the choice is up to you.
See where I added a little fabric butterfly onto the strap of the apron.
Cute, Cute, Cute!
If you don't want to invest in getting all those pots, decorate just one by putting a face on it, adding flowers, and giving it as a gift.
Just know that with a little bit of imagination and creativity, this is a fun and eye catching way to create charming decorative figures to sit in any garden or landscape! Have fun!
And take time to enjoy,
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