DIY Artwork


Being a person of a limited budget, I am a huge fan of DIY art. There are just so many options, so if you can’t afford the artwork at your local Starving Artist’s Fair, read on.

You’ve already seen me make some of my own artwork in the form of fabric panels.  Another great (and simple) idea is to stop by your local paper store or even your local target and pick out a pretty, graphic gift wrap or scrapbooking paper. Mount this on some foam core or other substrate or frame in a frame of your choice and voilà! Art!

This morning I came across an article on Better Homes & Gardens’ website on this very subject. They had about 15 or 16 different ideas, but here are the ones I liked the best.

#1: Place Mat Wall Art: Simply find a placemat you really like, drill holes in the corners and connect the mats with wire, twine, string or a chain.

#2: Canned Art: Save those old diced tomato cans and repurpose them as vases on your walls!

#3: Silhouettes: Trace whatever you want–yourself, your family, your cat, birds!, and then cut the shape out of black paper. Mount on a colored or patterned background and then frame.

#4: Six of a Kind/Repitition: Find a number of small items, post cards or greeting cards work well, similar but not identical. Frame them and hang in an orderly fashion.

If you want to read the whole thing, you can find it here. Let us know if you plan on trying any of these ideas out or if you have your own idea for DIY art.



Project Status: Finished!


I am finally finished with the artwork for my dining room!  If you remember, a while back I sent out a request for help.  I was having trouble deciding how many trees to include on my fabric panel.  Most people like one of the first two options and a few liked the original with just two trees.  Over the past month or so I would take a day and tape a third tree up, leave it there for a few hours, come back and more it to another place, then live it there for a few hours…just to see what I liked the best.

Well, you know what?  Turns out I really like the panel with just two trees.  I had always intended on there being three, but every time I added a third tree, it looked too crowded to me.  I did do a little embelishing though and here’s the final product:

Now for the how-to.  This project was very similar to the other fabric panels I made, I just didn’t involve paint this time around.  I started with this beautiful green floral fabric from Knoll Textiles that I’ve loved ever since it came out a few years ago.  I wrapped that around a wood frame that I purchased at Michael’s.

After that, I made my tree template.  This was done in AutoCAD.  I imported an image I liked, traced over the image and then placed my trees into a rectangle the same size as my panel (24″ x 36″).  After printing this out to scale, I cut the trees out and pinned them to my second fabric–a brown, outdoor fabric I picked up on clearance at Joanne’s.  My mom found it and I really liked it because it has a very subtle crosshatching pattern to it that reminded me of tree bark. 

I proceeded to cut along the lines, moving pins as I went along to make sure the fabric didn’t slip.  In the end, I had my trees.  At this point, I placed them on the fabric panel to see how things looked.

Once I was sure I liked the placement, I glued them down with Fabric-Tac glue.  It was an old bottle and I had to squeeze pretty hard to get the glue out, but it worked really well!  This is where I stopped at and took a couple month break in the project…mostly because I was having trouble finding the time to finish, but also because I wasn’t sure if I should stop at two, or keep adding trees.

I finally decided on leaving it at two trees, but knew the panel needed something…more.  I had clipped out an article from a Martha Stewart magazine a few months ago about how to make small flowers out of ultrasuede fabric.  She showed them as embellishments on throw pillows, but I thought they would be perfect for my panel (check back tomorrow and I’ll explain how I made them!).  I went to work on my flowers over the past weekend and after I glued those onto my artwork, I realized it had morphed into exactly what I had hoped…a beautiful piece of art that was simple, calming and caused me to smile every time I walked past!