How to Make Stunning Painted Plate Garden Art

This is the time of year when I know most of us are chomping at the bit to get outside and spruce up the exteriors of our homes. I made this painted plate garden art a couple of years ago and think it’s such a fun way to usher spring into your yard. Plus, it’s so simple to make your kiddos can even get in on the action!

I have seen some vintage dish and plate flowers on Pinterest and thought making my own from some inexpensive Dollar Tree glassware and glass paint would add a pop of pizazz to my yard this Spring. These are so easy to make and it is really hard to screw it up.  You don’t need to have painting experience to make this garden art.  Just a few swooshes with a paint brush and some glue and you are all set.


Dishes from Dollar Tree

E6000 Glue or Marine grade Glue

glass marbles from Dollar Tree

paint brushes

rubbing alcohol

1/2†coupling (at Lowes)

threaded rod (at Lowes)

Deco Art glass paint (see colors below)


1.  Wash all of your glass pieces with soap and water.  Once dry lightly wipe them with alcohol to get all the soap residue off.  This will help the paint to have maximum adhesion.

2.  With the turquoise Crystal Gloss Enamels and the Turquoise Frost Glass Enamel paint big brush strokes onto the sides of your big plate alternating paints.  At this point, both of the paints look similar but when they are dry they will look different.


3.  Start in the center and paint outwards with the Blue Crystal Gloss Enamel on the small plate.


4. With the flower dish, paint the center upwards with Turquoise Gloss Enamels.  The big brush stoke will give some great dimension to the flower.  Once dry stripe the center up with Turquoise 3D Frost Gloss Enamel writer.


5.  Drip blue Gloss Stain Pearlescent in a stripe pattern into the candle holder and let it pool at the bottom.


6.  Once the pieces are fully dry glue them together with a generous amount of E6000 glue or marine grade glue.  Then leave them undisturbed to cure overnight.


7.  You can stop here and display the pretty flower on a plate rack.  However, I think the glass marbles just add a little something to it.  Embellish them with swirls with the White 3D Opaque Glass Writer.  Glue the marbles around the large plate with E6000 or Marine grade glue.

8.  You can also add some of the White Opaque Gloss Writer to the edge of the dishes or add polka dots for more interest.


9.  After everything has dried then glue (be generous) your 1/2†coupling nut onto the back.  Thread a 3’ threaded rod into the nut and stick it into your landscaping for some cool garden art.


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Reposted from April 2016.

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  1. Love it. Sure wish I would have made my own last year for Christmas instead of spending the bucks on them. They look great!

  2. I especially like the little ruffled piece. It totally makes it look floral 🙂 So pretty and eye catching. The blues are really pretty too!!

  3. Talk about thinking outside of the box…what great and Whimsy way to add interest to your garden ….so cute xo

  4. What a super, creative way to add garden art. I especially love homemade pieces of art. I have a mosaic stone my son made when he was 6. He is now 20 and getting ready to head out for Army Bootcamp. That stone is a treasure. I like how the piece you created has dimension to it! Terrific! Thanks for sharing this great tutorial! Have a sweet day!

  5. Love the dimension to it and that you can really make it any style you like depending how you paint it!

  6. I love the way you layered several pieces to make this wonderful piece, and the painted designs really add to the floral look. Thanks for sharing- I’ll be pinning this one and maybe even giving it a try! 😉

  7. Really cute! Just a note because I don’t want your pretty art to be found broken to bit on the concrete. E6000 doesn’t hold up to UV. For items sitting out in the garden that will be exposed to sunlight and the elements, I suggest UV6800. I am interested in how long your piece holds up using the E6000 in the elements. Keep us posted. 🙂

  8. I tried to find the paint at Hobby Lobby with no luck. When I asked about glass paint they said to use acrylic paint but the store is so new I decided to wait and see if I could find it elsewhere. Now I’m worried about the glue! It would be a shame to have the piece fall apart and shatter. I just recently learned about E6000 (probably on Pinterest) so I don’t know much about glues other than scrapbook adhesives. Our handyman uses some type of glue to affix memorial plaques to a brick wall at our shelter and I’ve never seen one come down. I believe he told me it was some type of plumber’s glue. I’ll check and let you know what he says.

  9. The paint is sold at Michaels for sure. They have a little section of glass paint by all their vases. e6000 is pretty strong stuff if you let it cure. But let me know what you find out.

  10. Funny thing is I ripped a page out of a magazine with a picture similar to this. It has been something I want to do now all summer. Thanks for the tutorial on yours.

  11. I love these plate flowers…but wanted to let you know that E6000 may not hold in rainy weather…mine fell apart and also E6000 isn’t UV tolerant. I now use Lexel adhesive.

  12. What a beautiful piece……..seriously….it just “wowed” me…..
    My bf and I are going to try mosaic art for the 1st time today
    and I’m thinking I might try to incorporate your idea with the
    mosaic later on if the mosaic works out. Thank you very much
    for the directions and supplies, ect! Take care!

  13. On the bottles of enamel it said to cure in the oven. You didn’t mention doing this. Is that just for items you are planning to serve food on?

  14. Great! I was hoping that was it. We just finished 10 of the flowers. My kids, niece and nephew did our annual making of gifts for my sis and mom. They are definately what you would call “more creative/ colorful ” thank yours as the ages are 5 to 14. We used a combination of repurpised and new glass. They loved painting them. I just need to glue them. Wonderful craft for all

  15. I live in AZ and during the heat, most flowers fade away! I’m looking forward to doing a few of these so when I look outside there is color. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  16. I would LOVE to do this project with my girls (ages 9 and 7) this summer! Do you need to treat the painted plate at all? Spray it with any type of coating? We live in MN and get quite the summer storms at times. I just wonder how it would hold up to the elements here. What a fun project!

  17. Thank you so much Beckie for the info! I’ve seen these around and decided to make my own but didn’t know what to use for fine detailing that would be weather resistant. So I tried Krylon Indoor/Outdoor spray paint and sprayed some in a disposable cup and brushed it on a existing coat, but it hasn’t been tested yet by mother nature. Does anyone have experience with this? Like Holly, I’ve wondered about spraying with clear coat for protection.
    Will all glass hold up to the recommended baking in the oven or only oven safe glass? I have some great finds and don’t want to loose them.

  18. That is a great question. i would think glass should bake just fine. You aren’t baking at extremely high temperatures. But obviously test it first, this is just my guess.

  19. they are very pretty….ive made birdbaths from goodwill plates and platters with E6000 glue and it is very good…just make sure it cures awhile before using it . u could also use pretty thrift store plates (cost maybe $1.00 or under). im more concerned about the glue holding the connector and stake !! sometimes its very windy in my yard and i would be worried about them blowing over and breaking…….yours are very pretty……..thanks for the ideas…check out my Pinterest pages for some of my birdbaths and things i’ve made. Weezie

  20. Pingback: Great Ideas: 60 Projects to Make with Dollar Store Supplies « Cozy Little Houses
  21. Becky, I am ready to do some now. I have saved this post so I can refresh my memory! I have two stacked and ready to be glued, but I am curious how you put them in the ground. I am thinking the ground eventually will be soft and they will fall over if just stuck in the ground? How did you do this? I am really loving painting the plates because I have several plain Jane plates!

  22. Becky,
    Thank you so much for the tutorial on these beautiful plate flowers. I just (today) received all 7 bottles of my paint. I too had some trouble finding the paint at Hobby Lobby, Micheal’s and JoAnn Fabrics. I did however find all 7 online at Can’t wait to get started, I’m so excited. Thanks again, a happy crafter in Ohio 🙂

  23. Does this glass paint hold up in rainy weather, and where do you find Lexel adhesive ? Thanks

  24. Do you have to coat the plate with nothing to keep paint from running, to seal it?

  25. That’s true E6000 on my garden pieces turned yellow and some fell apart after being out during the summer.I make garden art from punch bowls and other large items.

  26. Nope, the paint has natural sealers in it. You can bake them if you want according to package directions. Enjoy your garden flower! 🙂

  27. We had so much fun making these for Mother’s Day gifts! I really LOVED this project and have requests from other family members who want their own. So happy I came across your post.

  28. Holly, they look great! I am so glad your family loved them and that you could create them with your girls. I just love crafting with my kiddos! Hugs!

  29. Love them! Can you list all the colors you used, I can’t seem to read them and I only counted 5 colors in the instructions. Thanks!

  30. Sure, here they are from left to right in the pic:
    1. White Opaque Gloss Writer
    2. Turquoise 3D Frost Gloss Enamel Writer
    3. Turquoise Frost Gloss Enamel
    4. Turquoise Crystal Gloss Enamel
    5. Blue Glass Stain Pearlescent
    6. Blue Crystal Gloss Enamel
    7. Blue 3D Frost Enamel Writer

    Hope that helps!

  31. I dont live near a craft store so I used glass paint I found in the craft section at walmart. It turned out beautiful but after 2 hours in the rain the paint was sliding off. Did I do something wrong? Maybe it’s just the paint I used. So sad 🙁

  32. Maybe you needed to set it by baking it. If it isn’t made for outdoors I don’t recommend using it unless you set it.

  33. Living in Northern Minnesota, how does the E6000 hold up over the winter. I would love to do these but am unsure about the adhesive

  34. It should be fine. They are fine year round in Indiana, but it isn’t nearly as cold. If you are nervous, they are easy to remove and bring indoors.

  35. Hi Becky..I finally made mine and put them outside, posted on Hometalk. However on any sites or posts I read about garden art etc, no one mentions water spotting. Mine are already waterspotted from irrigation watering of the garden. I can see after this season they will be pretty sorry looking, and any cup or bowl piece collects dirt, and grit. How do you do with your pieces?

  36. Hi Bernice, I honestly have never had that problem before, so I don’t really have any advice to offer. I am sorry that happened and wish I could be of more help.

  37. I have a hard time believing these are water proof with out some type of sealer on them.

  38. I just let it sit overnight. Try marine sealant (you can find it Lowes) if the e6000 doesn’t work for you.

  39. These are great! I saw these made from vintage dishes for sale at the Country Living Show in Rhinebeck, New York in June – they were $40! I thought to myself, these would be fairly easy to make – thanks for the great tutorial.

  40. Just thought I’d share because of all the talk on here. I was concerned with the glue holding up, so I read some forums about making these things (LOTS of people apparently do 🙂 ). I ended up using GE premium waterproof silicone in clear. You use it with a caulking gun. I haven’t put them outside yet, but man did it make a strong bond! It’s about 6.50 at the hardware store and would probably go a bit farther than the E6000 also, given the suggestion of being generous with the adhesive. My dad made the comment that people use that kind of silicone to make fishtanks…if someone can build a glass box that holds many gallons of water with it, I’m hoping it will hold up here!

    Also, I found sets of little “paint pots” of the glass paint at Michaels, and purchased those instead. It allowed me to make several differently colored flowers, and the set of 8 little pots is the same price as one bottle.

    Thanks for the great idea!

  41. I tried this project and it was fine until I attached the coupling to the back. After letting it set for 4 days, when I tried to attach the rod, the coupling came off…….anything else beside E6000 to attach the metal to the glass?

  42. Do you not have to heat set the paint?? I know with other brands you bake the pieces in the oven on low to set the paint. How long has yours lasted outside if it is unbaked? Looks awesome, by the way…thanks for the tute.

  43. Hi Beckie! Hope this finds all of you well.
    I just cut myself off from further indulging into your blog. EVERYTHING you post is of such great interest to me. I felt I had to tell you how much I enjoyed reading everything I have thus far.
    Before I pull myself completely away need to tell you how fantastic I think you are in many ways. Oh! By the way, NOW I have “deck envy”.
    Take care!

  44. I’m having problems getting the coupling nuts to stay on. I’ve made several and let them cure for 24-48 hours and then when I put it on the rod the coupling nut comes off every time except for one (out of the 12 I made). Any suggestions??

  45. Hi Shannon, I am not sure why you are having that problem. What kind of glue are you using? You can try a marine glue if the one you’re using isn’t strong enough.

  46. Hi
    Looking forward to doing yard art. Can you use any kind of paint? Do you seal it?

  47. Have you or anyone ever tried making these flowers with plastic plates instead of glass? If so, what glue do you use and how do they hold up in the weather? TIA

  48. Your stuff is inspiring and pushing me to stretch my imagination. Thanks for sharing your creativity.


  50. My plates had a lip on the back so the rod wouldn’t go in the coupling. I tried raising them with nuts but they won”t stick. Any suggestions?

  51. This article has been the best tutorial
    Thank. I just love yo put plates together. Now to learn to paint.

  52. I love your step by step instructions but wish you would tell us where to find your paints. I found all but the blue gloss Stain pearlescent and the white opaque gloss writer. Where can I find them

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