After my crafty weekend, I filled four blank canvases to freshen up the living room. Ready for the next peek at my new DIY art? I found this idea and pinned it from one of my favorite blogs, The Pleated Poppy.
The Pleated Poppy calls this her “Inspired” canvas, but I kept calling it the dogwood pattern in my head. (I guess it’s because of the dogwood quilting from the Oh Fransson blog – I’ve wanted to try it since she put up a tutorial, but I’m still a bit intimidated by free motion quilting). Anyway, the pattern has really stuck in my head – I love how the lines and circles interact to form the shape of dogwood leaves. So when I was brainstorming ideas for new art on my living room walls, I knew I wanted to attempt this project.
Time: At least an hour, plus drying time
Cost: About $25, depending on what you already own (individual prices listed under supplies)
- craft paint (5-7 colors – a couple neutrals like grey and light brown, and whatever brighter colors you want. I used Martha Stewart craft paint – each color runs about $2-3 each)
- canvas (this 16×20 was about $5)
- foam brush (89 cents)
- paintbrush (I had one left over from an old watercolor set),
- pencil (lead is better than mechanical – I used a dark blue colored pencil)
- cup or round object with a 3-inch diameter
For the background color, squirt a few neutral colors on the canvas – I used pastel blue, dark brown, and putty colors.
Dip the foam brush into water to dilute the paint a bit as you mix it all together on the canvas. The end result will be a tan or a grey, depending on how much of each neutral color you use. Wait for the first coat of paint to dry – maybe an hour or two depending on the type of paint you use. (The craft paint I used dried pretty quickly.)
When the background is dry, use a ruler to draw vertical and horizontal lines at 1 ½” apart.
(If you want to use a different sized circle, draw lines at intervals that equal half of the diameter. For example, if your cup has a 4-inch diameter, draw lines 2 inches apart for your grid. If the cup has a 2 ½-inch diameter, draw lines at 1 ¼ inches, etc.)
Then trace your cup to create the dogwood pattern. It took me a few seconds to figure out where to place the cup – you want to trace the circle at each intersection, so each overlapping circle creates the “leaves.”
Now for the fun part – painting! Just go to town filling in the leaves – you can be random, or methodical, with a specific color palette or all over the rainbow. The Pleated Poppy’s tutorial even left a few blank.
I started out trying to stay in a color scheme of blues and greens with a few tans and reds, but it started looking a little too matchy-matchy. So I kept mixing colors for new shades, and added in a few oranges and yellows to brighten it up. I tried to leave a few sections blank, but I just couldn’t do it! I guess I’m too much of a perfectionist.
Speaking of perfectionism – this was the hardest canvas for me to do, because I haven’t painted anything in a very long time and I forgot how hard it is to stay in the lines! But when I let go and just went for it, the end result looked a lot better than when I tried to go really slowly and meticulously. I had to step back and remind myself that this was supposed to be fun, not stressful.
So – my advice is to have fun with it and not worry too much about wobbly lines. It all looks good from far away, so who cares, right?
That’s it! Let it all dry, and it’s ready to hang on the wall! What I love about this canvas is the mix of colors, with the overarching pattern tying it all together. It’s almost like a quilt – all the different colors interacting with their neighbors, completely random individually yet somehow cohesive when you look at the big picture.
Hooray for Pinterest! I’m linking up to a few of my favorite Pin-spiring link-ups:
Hey, that’s Pin-tastic!, hosted by I Love You More than Carrots
Bake, make, or decorate… but most importantly, do!
Pinteresting Project, hosted by Lulu & Sweet Pea