Summer is the longest and simplest season for home decor and here’s some of my ideas for a table OR mantel-scape,
created for around $20.
MAKE YOUR OWN “FOCAL POINT”!
This year, I decided to try my hand at my very first painting…. dangerous, I know, but if I can do it, so can you! 🙂
At the craft store, purchase a blank art canvas. I found a 2-pack for $11 (after using a 40% off coupon); the only difference – they were slightly thinner. Use one (canvas) for this project and save the other for a Halloween project, I’ll share with you in the Fall. You’ll also need small bottles of acrylic paint (around 50 cents each at Wal-Mart), sand (Dollar Tree), foam and paint brush (around $1 if you don’t already have these). I bought sponges, in case I needed more texture, but the sand created plenty (on its own) when I added it to the paint (below), so ignore those (LOL).
My painting was inspired by one of my favorites – Van Gogh’s “Starry Night”, but my version is a “Starry (fish) Sea” instead. To create the painting’s background, I used a light pencil mark to draw 3 flow-y sections on the canvas and painted each one a different shade of blue or blue-green, allowing each section’s color to overlap each other. Allow the paint to dry completely.
You’ll also need a starfish pattern. I printed mine from an image on the internet, tracing around it (on plain paper) to create a 2nd, larger pattern also. After cutting-out both patterns, place them on your canvas and lightly trace around each.
Mix the white and light beige paints together, adding the white sand for texture (in the paint).
Using the white paint only, outline the starfish, with a regular (thin) paintbrush or using the end (edge) of your foam brush.
Then, mix the white paint, light beige paint and sand and use that to fill in the remainder of the starfish.
Allow the starfish to dry completely.
To paint the spine of the starfish, I used a paint brush (lightly) with touches of brown paint.
Continuing the paint around the sides of the canvas will create a finished look, ready for hanging.
But, if you want to frame it, check thrift stores (or your own stash) for a treasure to transform with paint and use.
I have used my thrift store frame with several of my previous designs (below):
Now, I’m using my shabby chic thrift store frame around my very first painting (Starry Sea); and because it didn’t fit perfectly inside, I tacked it in (with a few spots of low-temp hot glue) and covered those mechanics with rope from the DIY (Do It Yourself) store, which also added a textured accent. And the fish net added a 2nd layer of texture.
Another layer of textured design is created by adding rope around any old bottle, jar, chandelier light cover or vase.
Once again, check thrift stores for interesting shapes to cover with glue and rope or twine.
In the photo below, check out the different shapes that I found in just one trip to a thrift store.
Most are vases, but one is even a chandelier light cover.
Each one would make an interesting textured accent, like the one pictured on the left.
More texture was added, using small spots of low-melt hot glue to attach the remainder of the rope (I used around the art) in 3 rows around the mantle and an even larger rope simply wrapped around the bottom of a white vase I already had around the house.
The final layer was created by combining 5 items together. On top of a coffee-colored, wide candlestick, I placed an inexpensive glass vase. Inside the vase, I added sand, small shells and a $2 blue, glass candle holder. When you want to create a larger item, always look for several things to combine for height, width, texture & color.
Together, the 5 layers (listed above) created one gorgeous look!
There’s one more item I created to use in this look, and I’ll share the (DIY) details about it in my next post.
Other than that, the final 2 items (in this design) are shells — easily found at discount, dollar & craft stores — and some spiked grass greenery (recycled from an oriental theme Bride’s bouquet I made a few years ago):
And here’s the complete Summer mantel, full of layers, texture and an original DIY art project:
Enjoy the Creativity!