In today’s post, “Thrifted Treasures: Repurposing Vintage Soup Tureens into Indoor Planters,” I’m thrilled to share my front hall spring refresh, infused with French country charm, featuring soup tureens and other repurposed tureens as planters. I just adore the graceful shape of soup tureens, and honestly, the concept of a soup tureen brings a smile to my face! There’s a certain allure to these fancy tableware pieces, with their unique shapes that draw me in. The ornate lids with their the delicate handles, adorned with charming ball-shaped handles, birds, or fruit – and the feet get me every time! Although I’ve never actually used one for serving soup, there is something about their history and their air of elegance that draws me in and keeps me planting!

green apothacary with pansies in soup tureen

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A Little Soup Tureen History

A quick search on the Internet and I learned that Soup Tureens were introduced to the English via the French in the early 18th century. I read that Louis XIV‘s taste for hot, rich stews are often credited as a major influence in the use of tureens. They were originally pewter or silver and later, around 1740 moved to earthenware and porcelain. There are so many styles and patterns that are all so beautiful, the all white ceramic or porcelain ones are my favorite.

soup tureens in a row

Why You Will Love Using Soup Tureens as Planters

  1. Charm: Soup tureens add a fun and charming touch to your plant collection. Their unique shape and adorable handles bring personality to any space.
  2. Versatile Design: Tureens provide plenty of room for your plants to grow and thrive. No more cramped roots or limited space.
  3. Endless Creativity: Let your imagination run wild with different plant combinations, colors, and textures. This type of unique flower pot is like a blank canvas to explore your creative ways!
  4. Budget-Friendly Finds: Thrift stores and antique shops offer affordable treasures. Discover hidden gems without breaking the bank.
  5. Conversation Starters: Get ready for compliments and questions when guests see your unique planters. They’ll be curious about your creative repurposing skills.
  6. French Country Style: Add elegance to your space with white ironstone tureens or vintage finds. Embrace the effortless charm of French country decor.
2 soup tureens with plants on a white buffet.

Click here for instructions on these grapevine wreath topiaries planted in vintages soup tureens.

Where to Find Soup Tureens to Plant

When I set out to search for tureens online I found them to be quite pricey. I knew if I were going to do this spring project I would need to thrift them or find them in an antique mall. No problem there, those stores are my favorite adventures filled with my very favorite things! Recently I was able to purchase four tureens from The Blessing Barn Store in Mendon, MA. Each was around $20-$25 with the small one being just $8. Perfect! The Blessing Barn Store is a secondhand/thrift store whose profits go to local charities that support families in need. It is a feel-good place to shop and one of my favorite stores. Antique malls often carry a treasure trove of tureens, whether it be Ironstone, porcelain, earthenware, or another fine material, you are sure to find the perfect tureen while out antiquing! You may also find vintage soup tureens and other timeless pieces at flea markets.

a pothos planted in a tureen on stacked books.

A pothos plant planted in a ceramic tureen. For more infomation on Pothos plant care be sure to visit:

Choosing the Right Plants for your Tureen

When it comes to selecting the perfect plants for your tureen consider adding ivy or pothos for their trailing foliage and delicate blooms that can bring a touch of elegance to your tureen. If you’re looking for a fragrant and visually stunning option, try incorporating flowering plants like African Violets or geraniums. Bulb plants, like hyacinth bulbs or mini daffodils make a lovely spring planter, just plant the bulbs and add moss or a small bed of grass around them (just sprinkle some grass seed on the potting soil for a fun spring look!). These colorful flowers will brighten up your space and create a cheerful atmosphere. And we can’t overlook the delightful addition of fresh herbs like rosemary. Not only does it fill your kitchen with a wonderful fragrance, but it also adds a burst of flavor to your cooking.

violas in a soup tureen

Caring for Your Soup Tureen Planters: Tips for Drainage, Soil, and More

  1. Drainage: Since drilling holes in ceramic soup tureens might not be an option, I’ve found a clever workaround! Just place a layer of stones or pebbles at the bottom of the tureen to create a makeshift drainage system. It’s an easy and effective way to ensure your plants won’t sit in water and risk root rot.
  2. Soil Choice: When it comes to choosing the right soil, I’ve learned that a well-draining potting mix is key. It helps prevent water from pooling in the soup tureen, ensuring your plants receive the nutrients they need to thrive.
  3. Plant Size: I’ve discovered that it’s important to consider the size of your plants before planting them in the soup tureen. You want to give them enough space to spread their roots and grow comfortably, avoiding any cramped conditions.
  4. Watering Technique: In the absence of drainage holes, I’ve found that a gentle watering approach works best. It’s important to monitor the moisture levels and let the soil dry slightly between waterings to prevent any waterlogging issues.
  5. Sunlight Requirements: I always make sure to find the perfect spot in my home that provides just the right amount of sunlight for my plants. Each plant has its own sunlight preferences, so it’s all about finding the sweet spot where they can soak up the rays they need.
  6. Seasonal Considerations: One thing I’ve learned is to pay attention to the changing seasons. Some plants thrive better at certain times of the year, so I like to choose varieties that align with the current season and climate conditions.
  7. Maintenance: Keeping a close eye on my plants is key. I regularly check for any signs of pests or diseases, and I’m not afraid to give them a little pruning or a nutrient boost when needed. It’s all about giving them the care they deserve.
  8. Charm: Let your creativity shine! I love experimenting with different plant combinations and arranging them in my ceramic soup tureens. It’s a chance to create a unique and personalized display that adds a touch of beauty to any space.
Soup tureen planters on my green card catalog.
soup tureen planters on apothecary

The tureens above sit on my DIY Card Catalog using Green Chalk Paint.

Other Uses for Vintage Soup Tureens in Decor

  • Fruit and Veggie Displays: Showcase your favorite produce in soup tureens, adding a pop of color to your kitchen or dining area. It’s a tasteful way to display and organize your fruits and vegetables.
  • Candle Holders: Create a cozy atmosphere by placing candles in soup tureens. The reflective surfaces enhance the warm glow, adding an elegant touch to any space.
  • Kitchen Utensil Holders: Keep your kitchen organized and stylish by repurposing soup tureens as utensil holders. They provide a practical and decorative solution for storing your cooking tools.
  • Hutch styling: I always have a tureen or two in my vintage hutch! Mixed in with other beautiful tableware soup tureen offer a touch of elegance and charm.
  • Tabletop Decor: Curate a charming display with a mix of soup tureens in different sizes and patterns. Fill them with decorative items like Pincones, ornaments, or moss balls to add a personal touch to your dining room table, coffee table, or kitchen counters.
  • Flower Centerpieces: Because flowers are always a great idea! Elevate your table decor with stunning fresh flowers or dried arrangements in soup tureens. They effortlessly bring nature’s beauty indoors, creating eye-catching centerpieces.

Tips for designing flowers in a soup tureen: The wide mouth of a tureen certainly presents a challenge for a centerpiece! Using floral foam (dry for a dry arrangement, wet foam for fresh flowers) may be your best bet or you can use floral tape to create a criss cross grid on the top to help hold the blooms in place. Another option is to use lots of greens, a strategically placed abundance of greens will support your flowers. You can also use a fitted sheet of chicken wire over the opening to help guide the flowers.

A dried arrangement in a soup tureen on my coffee table.

Fall dried arrangement in a soup tureen featuring dried hydrangea, wheat, acorns and twigs.

Other Vintage Dishes and Tableware to Use as Planters

I absolutely love exploring the world of repurposing vintage dishes and tableware as planters. There’s something special about giving these timeless pieces a new lease on life and transforming them into unique homes for my plants. Pitchers, with their wide mouths and deep bodies, provide ample space for my plants to grow, and their charming designs add so much character to any space. Vintage teacups and saucers bring a whimsical touch to my indoor garden, with their petite size and delicate patterns perfectly suited for displaying small succulents or herbs. I find vintage bowls to be stunning planters, as their wide shape accommodates a variety of plants and adds a touch of nostalgia to my surroundings. Jugs and vases, with their elegant shapes and decorative details, become focal points in any room while providing a stylish home for my favorite plants. Even vintage sugar and creamer sets have found a new purpose as mini planters, their compact size adding a delightful touch to corners and shelves. And let’s not forget about vintage casserole dishes, which make eye-catching planters with their deep and spacious interiors, allowing for the growth of larger plants or the arrangement of multiple smaller ones. Embracing the beauty of repurposing these vintage dishes and tableware adds a touch of personal style to my indoor garden and allows my plants to thrive in unique and creative ways.

For more creative ways to exercise your green thumb, explore a variety of planter ideas visit:

3 self watering planters with spritzer

How to DIY an Indoor Self-watering Planter (Ballard Designs style): Get the Ballard Design look by using simple glass globes sourced from light fixtures and glass vases to make these uniquing wicking self watering planters. Step-by-step instructions and care tips included in this post.

Thank you for visiting the blog today! I was excited to share this, Thrifted Treasures: Repurposing Vintage Soup Tureens into Indoor Planters post with you! Using soup tureens as planters is a fantastic way to unleash your green thumb and get creative. These timeless pieces add a touch of charm to any space and provide endless possibilities for unique plant arrangements. So go ahead and let your imagination soar as you explore the countless creative ways to incorporate these unique containers and your favorite plants into your indoor gardening adventures. Get ready to create your own green oasis with a dash of whimsy and a whole lot of style!

Keep creating friends!

My signature that is a character of me sitting and holding a cup of coffee

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