Decorating Inspirations: Paintings

by generalmom

I get a lot of designer magazines every week. So I gather up inspiration for how to style or decorate and also ideas of what to hang on the wall. One major problem with these magazines: the price. So DIY here we come!

I’ve been thrifting old ugly canvases and reprinting them for about 8 years now. Seeing past the ugly art is the key. I usually look for a large format canvas that are fully wrapped around the back so you don’t see the staples.

I had a 9′ blank wall to decorate in my dining room and I found two large 30″ square canvases at Burlington Coat Factory in the clearance section for $15 each.

Here is the dining room bare with the ugly art leaning in the background.

They had a glossy gesso finish on them with lots of texture that I loved. So I bought white gesso from Hobby Lobby to cover it up and so the new acrylic paint would bind to it.


My little guys even got in on the fun and some paint on their PJ’s. So I had to to a break before I even got started!

Here is the inspiration photo from Ballard Designs wanting $300 for each painting (which is likely printed and gloss gesso put on top).

I liked the circles and especially liked the arabesque patterns. I have a lot of that pattern in my house. Do you remember the Craigslist marble backsplash story? Well I traced the marble behind the stove and made a template out of a cereal box.


IMG_0837.JPGThen I used an ice cream container for the circles and a shower squeegee for the dragging the paint.

Isn’t art so fascinating how it comes together. It’s a mess for a while and you keep working it until it just feels finished. Or the kids bug you for lunch…either way.


And here is the side by side inspiration on the left and my creation on the right. Not bad for $30!