Personalized Christmas Subway Art… GIFT?
Written by on Monday, November 18th, 2013

Are you searching for a personalized, inexpensive, Christmas gift

that will thrill & impress pretty much anyone on your list?

Well, here it is!

I came up with a subway art idea, with a holiday twist.

It’s a gift idea that’s creative, customized, one-of-a-kind and

YES, you CAN do it yourself because it’s super-easy.


Purchase an artist’s canvas.

{I used a 16″ x 20″ on BOGO sale @ Michael’s Crafts for $6.00}

blank canvas

You will also need:

Self-adhesive alphabet letters and holiday shaped stickers…

3-4 packs of self-adhesive, yet removable, alpha letters, in different fonts (using 50% off coupons – apx. $10)

{I have a bunch of these because I pick them up at yard & tag sales,

but also ask friends & family because they usually have some lying around… to save $$}

Holiday shaped stickers (using 50% off coupon) – around $1.00

holiday shapes 2     holiday shapes 1

Can of spray paint ($1.00 – $4.00)

Iridescent glitter ($1.00-$2.00)

Paint Brush


Using a pencil or something easy to remove or cover up,

draw a very faint tree shape (encompassing almost the entire canvas)

to guide the placement of your alphabet and holiday shape stickers

s_pencil marks


Beginning with the first letter of their last name,

create a line-by-line design, mixing holiday shapes & words as well as words, personalized to the recipient

{I used family & pet names, home address, etc.  Also consider home towns, hobbies, favorite vacation spots, etc.}

NOTE:  when adding holiday design stickers (i.e. Christmas Stockings), personalize those also (i.e. 5 kids – 5 stockings, etc.)



Make sure all of the stickers are secure, take the canvas outside (in a well-ventilated area)

and spray paint the entire canvas.  Allow to dry a minimum of 1 hour.

s_canvas_painted green)b


After the spray paint is completely dry, begin peeling off the stickers to reveal the holiday designs & words

s_stickers removed


Add small amounts of white paint to the inside of the letters & holiday shapes,

to clean them up & so the iridescent glitter will stick.

Also add any “color” details you wish… maybe paint one thing (like the gingerbread people brown, etc.)…  I striped the candy canes!

Add glitter as you go.

s_white painting     s_glittering     s_candy cane glittering


Gently pat the back of the canvas to remove excess glitter over a paper plate, newspaper or trash can.

s_candy canes glittered


Gift your family member, friend, neighbor, co-worker, etc. with their very own customized, one-of-a-kind holiday art

and be ready for a HUGE holiday hug!

s_done 1

It would look especially cute displayed next to a tree full of commemorative “family” ornaments.

LR placement

ALSO CONSIDER… bell, ornament, snowman, etc. shapes!

And while you’re at it, why not make one for your own family?

After I made this, I found out a friend wanted to place a “Hot Cocoa” sign over the cocoa bar at her holiday party,

so I purchased an 8″ x 10″ canvas and adhered stickers as well as

a cup (I freehand-cut from cardboard) & used double-sided tape to (temporarily) adhere to the canvas

prior to spray painting it with red…

cocoa sign_painting

Once it was dry, I removed the stickers & my handmade cup shape,

added a little white paint & clear glitter to the interior of the shapes & letters for a little extra pop…

cocoa sign_painted

Check out how cute the sign looked in her kitchen…

cocoa sign_in place




  1. Wanda says:

    Hello Eileen
    I do love this ideal you came up with about your personalized Christmas subway art! I am going to make this one for my home, keep your wonderful ideals coming!!!!!

  2. V. Kelly says:

    Absolutely brilliant. What a great gift idea for a neighbor or relative. This will be one of those things they bring out every year.

  3. Chris Teague says:

    This is such a GREAT idea! I really love it, just another reminder of why I love to visit you so much! (online of course, wish it could be in person! *S*)

  4. Cookie 17 says:

    This is so cute you did great job on it ,,thank’s for sharing ….

  5. Linda says:

    What a great idea!!! Love it !!! Thanks for sharing this .

  6. Susan says:

    Eileen, love love love this. Doing one with fall items for my friend who adores fall as much as I do.

  7. Barb Reiser says:

    How creative!! Just what I’ve been looking for – something I could make for Christmas gifts for friends! Thanks Eileen. 🙂

  8. Kimberly says:

    Great idea!!! Will definitely do this!

  9. Joanne Kennedy says:

    So cute! I’m going to make some for next year. Love the hot coco one. It’s hard to find cute pictures for Christmas and I love that you are making some!

  10. Kathy Brown says:

    I love these ideas! We have a sister/brother Christmas get together. How perfect the family tree will be for my sisters. The Hot Cocoa one is perfect for me!

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