Paint Your Own Pottery: The Ins and Outs

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As readers of my blog, I am sure you have come to know that I love anything DIY and I would bet to assume that you are here because you do as well! As creatives, we like to search out any and all projects that let our creative juices flow. Which brings me to the reason for today’s post. Our family has been spending a lot of time recently at a paint your own pottery studio called Color Me Mine. This is a national franchise chain that has locations all across the country. The basic premise is that you pick out an unpainted/unglazed piece of ceramic, paint it, they fire it in the kiln and you come to pick up your masterpiece one week later. 

A side view of shelves at Color Me Mine ceramic studio stacked with unpainted ceramic pieces

I recently went in for their $5 mug day and wanted to bring you all along for the journey. As a side note, my sister in law is an employee at Color Me Mine but all these observations and opinions are entirely my own and I was not compensated to write this post. I just love to share new and fun ways to be creative with all my readers. 

A stack of white mugs that are piled three mugs high and about five rows deep

Color Me Mine has monthly events and a printed calendar at their store so that you can keep track of all the fun specials and days they have coming up. (Check with your local store to see what type of events they offer.) As I mentioned above I went in on $5 mug day where they had pre-selected mugs that were all the same size and the cost for the mug and your studio fees that day was only $5 which is an awesome deal.

A wide view of unpainted ceramic pieces sitting on shelves in a studio

A ceramic painted snoopy and woodstock sitting on a shelf

How to Paint Your Own Pottery

This was my first time painting alone in the studio without my kids present and oh my was it glorious. To have an entire table to myself without any interruptions was amazing. I think I might have to do that more often! 

I was actually on a bit of a time crunch that day as my daughter had to be picked up for school midday so I went as soon as they opened. And I am glad I did because with the special that day they were very busy! I also planned ahead and went in with an idea in mind of how I wanted to paint my mug. I think that might be the hardest part when going to a place like this: first, you have to decide out of the hundreds of pieces which one you want to paint and then second decide what design or colors or techniques you want to do on it.

A sheet of paper with black words saying "be you, do you, for you"

I wanted to do a quote on my mug that I found on Pinterest and since my sister-in-law was working that day she showed me the tracing paper that they have for anyone to use to transfer my text to my mug so that I didn’t need to free-hand it. I have done free-hand wording before and hated it so I was sooo glad this was an option. I had printed out my quote at home on my printer in the font I liked and just brought that in with me. The nice thing about the tracing paper is that the residue will fire off in the kiln and so if you don’t cover it all up with paint you don’t need to worry. (I did paint the entire mug with a white paint before adding the words.)

A white mug on a gray plate with red traced letters "be you, do you, for you"

I also have a love of all things flowers so I had perused Pinterest before just to get some ideas of flowers to add to my mug. Because I just didn’t want a plain white mug with the quote. Pinterest is a great resource for ideas for painted pottery pieces. Just search for ceramic painting or pottery painting and you are sure to find many ideas. 

A painted mug on a lazy susan with the words "be you, do you, for you" with a green handle and flowers

A white mug with pink and purple flower assortment with a green handle on a lazy susan

You can also take as little time or as long of a time as you need on your project. But you might be wondering what about some more detailed pieces, what if you want to take the time to finish it as you want but you are running out of time? No worries you can just pay for your piece and take it with you wrapped up and then come back to work on it later. Now you might be wondering if you would have to pay another studio fee for coming back to finish it and the answer is: No! That is unless you choose another piece to paint.

As I mentioned above our family has attended multiple events at Color Me Mine over the last year. One of the kids’ favorites is Kids’ Night Out which at our store happens once a month. The parent can pre-register their kids and pay online and then drop them off for a couple of hours. The kids get to paint a piece, eat some pizza and play games. (Again the specific details will vary at each location). They also have special events in the summer for kids and events for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day where the kids can create special projects for their parents. 

A collection of ceramic animals in assorted colors painted by a child on a shelf

But it’s not just the kids who get to have fun, there is Ladies Night, Adult Night and you can even host your own parties for birthdays, corporate events or wedding showers. 

If you are looking for a fun weeknight or weekend activity that touches your creative side then this is it. You can bring in food or drink and have a grand ole time spending time with loved ones and creating a decor piece for your home or even a functional piece for your kitchen or bathroom. And now I have a finished mug that I love to drink my coffee out of!

A completed fired and hand-painted mug with the words in black "be you, do you, for you"

A fired and glazed completed ceramic mug with flowers and a green handle sitting ona green table with a whitewashed pot in the background

 

If you are local to me in Oregon my Color Me Mine location is in Hillsboro at the Streets of Tanasbourne. Check them out! Have fun and be creative!

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