Hey folks, today I’m chatting about using Thompson’s Waterseal Clear Multi-Surface Waterproofer to seal and paint clay pots for outdoor use. I’m doing a bit of painting for some of the container veggies and plants I’m planning for the backyard, so I’m putting this sealer to work lately. (See my full backyard post here.)
About Thompson’s Waterseal Clear Multi-Surface Waterproofer
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Here’s a bit about the waterproofer and why it’s my product of choice to seal clay pots for outdoor use:
- The Thompson’s Waterseal website indicates that it will effectively seal any porous material against damage by water, including concrete, brick, stone, plaster, wood, canvas, and asbestos. So I figured it would be up to the task of sealing clay.
- It’s clear and has a nice consistency. It’s pretty watery, a lot like a water-based polycrilic if you’ve used that. When painting on clay, it’s easy to see where you’ve painted because it just makes the pot look wet.
- It doesn’t have a terribly strong odor, and the odor it does have dissipates pretty quickly. Even when I painted in the garage.
We have a 1.2 gallon jug of this stuff, but it’s also available in a quart option and a handy aerosol spray for smaller projects. I use a disposable chip brush when working with this sealer so that I can just chuck it when I’m done and not have to deal with mineral spirits cleanup.
I used Thompson’s Waterseal Clear Multi-Surface Waterproofer first on this very large pot. Even though I did use a paint designed for outdoor use on this pot, the clay was super porous, and I was afraid it wouldn’t stand up to the elements (and the moisture of a ton of wet soil on the inside).
So where do I get a big pot for cheap?
Big pots are EXPENSIVE. Go to any home decor or big box store and you’ll fall in love with a pot, only to have your yikes meter run off the charts when you see the price. But big pots are also very pretty—and necessary if you’re planting something that needs a bit of room. Enter Ollie’s Bargain Outlet. One of my favorite stores…and DEFINITELY a favorite for pots. In the spring and summer, they have a buttload of pots to choose from.
And they aren’t cheap plastic ones, either. They are beautiful clay pots, many of which are also glazed. Just yesterday I came home with three giant pots. One for $20 (black glazed), one for $12 (blue patterned one), and one for $10 (the yellow beaut I’m going to be working on in this post).
Painting the Yellow Beaut
So this yellow one…I loved the lines on it and the size was perfect for the space I wanted. The yellow just wasn’t going to cut it, though, so I decided to break out some paint. I really wanted to do this pot in a navy color for the backyard. However, when I got out my royal blue and black outdoor paints to mix together, I realized that I hadn’t completely shut the blue when I’d opened it last. Noooo. It was ruined. Super chunky and totally unusable.
I really had my heart set on navy, but I decided to take the easy way out and use the white I already had on hand: DecoArt Curb Appeal in Farmhouse White. It would look nice next to the white pots I already had near the area this pot was going. And it would help tie in the bright white trim on the deck a bit more.
So to finish this pot, I just brushed on the Thompson’s Waterseal Clear Multi-Surface Waterproofer using a chip brush. The instructions on the waterseal say to wait a while before painting over it, so I officially recommend that strategy. 🙂 However, I did not. I left it to dry overnight under a fan and painted the next day.
Here’s the first coat brushed on:
And here’s my lovely finished pot, sealed and painted for a beautiful fit in my space:
Shop supplies for this project here: