DIY Painted Planters with Succulents

These bell cups are so easy to personalize and look great with succulents in them! In just a few minutes you’ll have a fun new planter for your succulents!

I’ve been trying to find some unique containers for succulents and came across these bell cups (I thought they were wood cups, but apparently they grow this way!). I knew immediately they would be perfect for succulents.

I’ve been wanting to add some more color to my pottery collection and this was a fun project to do that with. You can jazz up these cute planters in just a few minutes. They’d make great gifts too!

You'll have so much fun making them for your succulents!

I’m not kidding when I say dressing up these bell cups will only take a few minutes. You can also do so many different things with them: add gold leafing, use a metallic paint pen, paint them bright colors. Just click on the links to get these products and do the projects yourself!


I tried quite a few different options and love having the mis-matched variety. I think my favorite technique is to use the paint pens. My least favorite is definitely the gold foil. Here are each of the techniques I tried and a little about them!

To prep the cups, just make sure they are clean and have a hole in the bottom for water to drain out. I used an awl to poke through the holes that were already in the cups and made them slightly larger.

Acrylic Paints

I used a small paint set when I made this project, but I’ve since been converted to these Martha Stewart craft paints. The colors are gorgeous and the paint goes on extremely well!

For the first ball I masked off an area using masking tape. Then, I painted the lower half of the ball. I created a steep angle so the ball wasn’t split right in half. Once the paint is dry remove the masking tape. I really like how this turned out! Using the tape created a really clean line which I love. You could also free-hand the line for a more raw look.

Use masking tape to create a perfect line when painting a bell cup

A simple planter for your succulents that only takes 5 minutes to make!

Then I thought it would be fun to paint the whole cup except for a stripe in the middle. This time I used washi tape since it was thinner than my masking tape. I created a slightly wavy line with the tape (make sure to press the edges down really well) and then painted over the whole thing. Remove the washi tape after the paint is completely dry. Pretty easy!

Use washi tape and paint to create a fun design on bell cups

These cacti looks so cute in this painted bell cup!

For this cup I used the end of a pencil to create polka dots all over. It was really simple to do and has a fun feel to it! It’s also a nice contrast to the lines on the other two balls.

Use paint to decorate a bell cup planter for your succulents

Gold Foil

I’ve been wanting to try using gold foil and thought a small project like this would be a good way to experiment. Turns out… I don’t really like gold foil! To create this look, use spray adhesive on the lower portion of the ball. Then, take a piece of gold foil and gently press it onto the ball.

If you want something perfect you may want to tape off an area like I did with the paint. I found the foil to be unforgiving and really messy. The foil is really delicate and hard to control. It rips easily and quickly sticks to the adhesive on the ball. That said, I love how it looks!

Add a unique look to a wood cup with gold leafing

Metallic Pen

This was my favorite way to decorate these cups. I had plenty of control and still got the fun metallic look. I’m a little addicted to gold right now… Plus, you can do so many things with the pens.

I tried blocking out a section on the top of the cup, drawing triangles (another favorite at the moment), and drawing random lines. These pens are so easy to use and dry pretty quickly. I think you’ll really love using them. I know I did!

Use a gold paint pen to decorate a planter for your succulents

A silver paint pen makes this bell cup planter look so cute

Decorate a bell cup with a gold paint pen to make a cute planter for succulents!

Once you have all your pots decorated the way you’d like, it’s time to fill them with succulents! The pots are small enough you likely won’t need to add any extra soil. Just put the whole plant in!

After you have the succulents in, add the top dressing to cover the soil. This is one of my favorite parts of the project actually! It adds a finished look and feels modern and chic. The rocks will also prevent soil from coming out as easily when you water.

These bell cups are perfect for succulents and are fast and easy to decorate!

What will you do to decorate your bell cups? This is such a fun project and so easy to do. Plus, it only takes a few minutes. So if you’re looking for a unique gift idea or just want to add more succulents to your home (and who doesn’t?), give these a try!

These succulent planters are so cute and so easy to make!

You'll have so much fun making them for your succulents!
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[…] have already conquered the world! To make them look cuter you can make these cool planters from! The supplies are succulents, bell cups, a gold pen or gold leaf sheets, glue, acrylic paint and a […]

Colette Moore

I have been following Darby Smart for a long time–even before I got into succulents. Still haven’t ordered yet, but I get amazing ideas.

[…] and below, is from Cassidy at ‘Succulents and Sunshine’. Oh my, these are cute! These DIY painted planters are perfect little accents, and the succulents are really easy to grow. While you are there […]

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