Monday, March 24, 2014

DIY Herringbone Art

Hey guys!  Welcome to all the new friends around here...I'm super thankful to Remodelaholic for sharing one of my posts on their Facebook page this weekend, and am hopeful that some of new visitors will stick around and follow along with the craziness!

As I mentioned in last week's Friday Favs, I've been working on some simple, cheap DIY art to fill some of the blank spaces on our walls.  My criteria for choosing an idea to try out was pretty had to be cheap, use materials that I had easy access to, and above all else, it had to be something abstract and not be intended to look like anything.

Because, when it comes to artistic talent....I have none.  

I've never taken an art class, my hand is not steady, I don't have the knowledge, tools or techniques of an artist.  I wish I did, but unfortunately my skills are limited to spray painting and using painter's tape or stencil to create cool designs.  

But somehow....this piece of inspiration seemed like something i could handle.  I pinned this Wild Herringbone print from Cozmania over a year ago, and I just love it! And while I knew my version wouldn't compete with the original, I decided to see if I could create something that resembled this cool painting.

Since this project was truly an experiment, my goal was to use supplies that I had on hand, rather than buying a bunch of paint and supplies.  That way, I knew I wouldn't feel too bad about it if my final product looked like crap.

So, the only things I purchased for the project were two canvases that I picked up in a buy one, get one free sale a few weeks ago. I used paint that we had on hand from painting various walls around the house.  The brown color is the same paint we used on the walls in our master bedroom and bathroom, the two shades of blue were used in the hall bathroom, (Remember how I hated the first color I painted that room?  I finally found a use for that bright blue!), and the gray paint was from a sample pot that I got for free using a coupon I pulled out of a magazine.

Using some foam paintbrushes that we had on hand, I painted a random abstract design on each canvas.  I would have liked to blend the colors a bit, but I didn't really know how to do that without having them turn some sort of strange shade (See?  No art skills whatsoever).  So I painted in stages, letting each color dry for a few minutes before coming back to add the next one.  

Those who follow along on Instagram got a sneak peek, along with some of my doubts about how things were going...

I let that dry overnight, and then it was time to create the herringbone effect.  I cut out many, many rectangles of painter's tape, and applied them to the canvas in a herringbone pattern.  

This took some practice, but it was pretty easy once I had the process down!  It was a nice, mindless task to accomplish while knocking out a few episodes of One Tree Hill.

The painter's tape did not want to stick firmly on the porous surface of the canvas.  I had to keep pressing it down, and it was a pain.  I'm not sure how that could be avoided, though. 

Once I had the entire canvas covered in tape, I randomly removed a few pieces of tape to add some visual interest...

...and then I painted over the spaces with two coats of white paint (leftover, of course). I was really worried about the paint leaking underneath the painter's tape, so I stopped to press the tape down several times throughout the process.  Once the first coat of paint was on, I didn't need to press it down any more, the paint sort of took care of that for me. 

  After letting the paint dry for 30 minutes or so, I removed all of the painter's tape to reveal a herringbone pattern!  

It's tough to photograph in there, but I'm really pleased with what it brings to our tiny master bathroom!  

Do you have any art skills?  Would you attempt creating your own art? 

I'm pretty sure that abstract is the only variety I stand a chance with...

Linking Up At
 photo signature_zps64b784cd.jpg


  1. It looks great Em! Don't worry, abstract is all I could do too- if that!

  2. Great job em I think u should try it with some green and purple colors I have the perfect space haha

  3. Love how this turned out! It's a definite success! You're being featured today on Friday DIY Features!