Make it Monday: Most Favoritest Canvas EVER

11:17 AMHeather

It's official. It's not just me...I promise!  My husband looked at my newly made canvas this morning and declared it "possibly the best canvas you've ever made!"  And, I've made a few in my life time.  

Not to toot my own horn--but this was a great project.  It was cheap (about $20), although a bit more labor intensive than I anticipated (about 4 hours total work time).  But, it turned out well, and it finishes off my recently repainted half-bath.  

I'd been keeping my eyes out for some new all decor for the half-bath for about six months.  Was just ready for something new, but never could quite find THE one...for THE right price, I should add.  Because I am picky about how much I'll spend.  But, I saw a painting on pinterest, and thought, "I could do that!" 

Here's where I started. 
A large canvas and some musical note scrapbook paper from JoAnns.  The original pinterest project used pages from a hymnal to cut the words from, but this scrapbook paper was the closest I could find.  And, the original sample said, "It is well with my soul."  Now, I do love that hymn, but Come Thou Fount resonates with me.  If you haven't heard it, look it up.  David Crowder and Mark Schultz have great versions.  The lyrics about being prone to wander and being prone to leave the God I love--how they sum up my daily wrestling match to do things on my own power versus His power.

Okay, on to instructions.  
1.  I cut these letters from my handy cricut.  

2.  My next step was to paint the base coat of the canvas, and this is where I beg your forgiveness for the fact I did not take pictures of the "during" process.  Basically, my approach was I squirted all shades of ice blue, light blue, light turquoise, white, and burgundy on the canvas, then using my brush, I spread them across the canvas surface.  I brushed horizontally, and then vertically and then horizontally again to get all those colors mixed.  

3.  Next, I took some brown and burgundy paint (I use Apple acrylic paints for $0.57 cents a bottle from Hob Lob), and stippled them with a dry brush around the edges.  This means dabbing the tip of the brush over and over around the edges to get the effect I wanted.  I wasn't sold.  In fact, I thought I'd messed the whole thing up.  But, I pressed on.

4.  I used my homemade mod podge (1/2 water, 1/2 school glue mixed together) to put the letters on the canvas once the paint had dried.  For the record--I used my big level yardstick to get the letters on straight.

5.  The next step was again a feeling of complete disaster.  I let the mod podge dry overnight and wanted to do a little glaze over the whole canvas to try to age the bright white musical scrapbook paper.  So, I watered down some dark brown acrylic and brushed it over, intending to wipe it off.  Except the mod podge started to ball up and wipe off.  Using lots of damp rags, I managed to fix this problem.  Lesson learned?  Maybe soak the scrapbook paper in tea and then let dry to age it BEFORE I cut the letters out and glue them on?

6.  Okay, last step.  I free hand painted the little bird, branches, and leaves by looking at the sample.  Now, if this screams impossible to you--you could look for pre-cut images or decals or a stencil you print from your computer to cut these images from colored scrapbook paper?  And, voile!

The pinterest example: 

Okay, this all sounds like TOO much?  Here's a short cut idea.  Save the JPEG image of the pinterest example (or my version--whatever) by right clicking on image and "save as" to your hard drive.  Then, upload it to your favorite photo place and have it printed up as a poster size photo.  Last, simply mod podge it to a canvas the same size.  SUPER easy!!!  You can do it!  In fact, that is a cheap and easy way to create your own canvases from all the amazing inspirational quotes and sayings and such from pinterest.  Anyone can decorate their walls with meaningful wall decor that spurs you on in your race for Him.  Be blessed, bloggy friends.

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