decorating planters – a RISE project

spray painting together RISE

As the warmer weather approached, The Bridge team felt the garden could do with a bit of a spruce up, starting with our several large planters. After some brainstorming and a bit of online research, we decided to celebrate our creative sides and paint them with colourful spray paints. It proved surprisingly easy and very fun to do!

Here’s how we did it:

Firstly, we gave the planters a good wash, and then began to prime them. We did this using a priming spray which we sprayed all over them in smooth motions. (We made sure the planters were placed on cardboard first to ensure we didn’t prime anything else!).

Next it was time to get creative. Everyone got involved - from the Bridge CEO to the RISE participants. They used paper shapes to create stencils and patterns in the spray paint. One RISE participant even thought outside the box and used nearby leaves to create a nature pattern which was widely admired.

Using cut-out letters, the side of the planter was also decorated with a funky, colourful reminder of the project name – RISE!

The finished product was colourful and creative, and a definite improvement to the plain black planter it began as!

priming the plant pots
rise project

Another planter (there are 6 in total) was decorated by Chloe, who helps to facilitate RISE’s art therapy. After washing and priming a new planter, she used the Bridge logo as inspiration and cut out stencils in order to spray paint specific shapes onto the planter.

The stencil was secured to the planter with masking tape, so that the only area that would be painted was the shape chosen. Following the colour scheme of the Bridge logo, the stencil was filled in with paint.

Next, the same stencil was used in a line to create the pattern of the logo, in the correct colour order. The use of the stencil meant that each image was almost identical, creating a more recognisable image.

Once the full pattern was done on the front, Chloe cut out two flower stencils, following on from the nature theme of the first planter, to paint onto the sides of the planter.

Firstly, she secured the larger stencil using masking tape and then sprayed into the shape to colour the flower. After doing this three times in different colours, she allowed it to dry for a few minutes before using the smaller stencil on top of the painted flowers, and spraying a different colour on top. This created a double-layer effect on the flowers to give them more dimension. The use of contrasting colours helped the flowers to stand out!

After doing this on both ends of the planter, the top rim of the planter was painted in different colours too to create the final piece.

progressing rise project planters
the planters

Want to decorate something yourself? Here’s what you need to know!

  • find out the material of what you want to decorate, to ensure you buy the right type of primer and paint.
  • do all spraying in an open, ventilated area and take care not to breathe in the fumes! A face mask and goggles are advised.
  • make sure to wear clothes that you don’t mind getting messy, just in case!
  • protect any areas that you don’t wish to be painted, such as other furniture, decking or walls.
  • ensure your object is clean and dry before beginning.
  • prime the object first according to the primer instructions and allow to dry.
  • cut out your stencils (if desired) before you begin.
  • shake the spray paint cans and use according to instructions.
  • remember – always read safety information and abide by safety regulations!
  • finally, get creative and enjoy!

To find out more about the RISE project or our other current projects, visit our programmes webpage or check out other recent blog posts.

Sarah HicksThe Bridge