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How to Repaint Already Glazed Ceramics

Updated February 21, 2017

Ceramic glazes preserve your pottery and tile's colouring and also adds a layer of protection from small scratches. As time goes on, however, you may need to repaint your ceramics to return them to their original lustre. The glazed coating presents a problem, though. Paint cannot stick to smooth glazed coating. This means you must make the glazed surface suitable for painting. Do this by creating a rough surface the new paint can adhere to.

Sand the entire ceramic piece with 150-grit sandpaper. This creates a textured surface that paint can easily adhere to. When finished sanding, clean off any dust with a clean cloth rag.

Paint the ceramic piece with primer. Primers act as bonding agents that hold paint in place. This, in conjunction with the textured surface you created by sanding down the glazed surface, can hold a new layer of paint. Allow the primer to dry before continuing.

Paint the entire ceramic piece using oil-based paint (or ceramic paint if available) and a paint brush. Use uniform strokes while moving in the same direction for an even paint job.

Place the ceramic piece in the open to air dry for several hours. If you painted floor tiles, block them from foot traffic.

Things You'll Need

  • Sandpaper
  • Cloth rag
  • Primer
  • Paint brush
  • Oil-based paint
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About the Author

David Montoya is an attorney who graduated from the UCLA School of Law. He also holds a Master of Arts in American Indian studies. Montoya's writings often cover legal topics such as contract law, estate law, family law and business.