Budget DIY art for the broke girl’s wall

Budget DIY art for the broke girl’s wall

Home décor is an important part of making ourselves feel stylish in our surroundings, and while it should be a reflection of our personality and unique style, it’s often a reflection of our pay cheques… sigh.

By Candice Jackson | 19th June 2015

Who ever said being thrifty was out? Don’t listen to those folk! It’s possible to have style for a fraction of the cost, if you work some DIY art magic (and put in a little effort, remember this is the broke girl’s guide, not the lazy girl’s guide).

Crafter-noon anyone?

Oh the Internet is a wonderful place! Here are 5 DIY art projects that we think you can definitely have a crack at:

1.    String Art

String Art Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; Smiuchin, Pinterest; String Art Diy & Pinterest;  FeedBitz.

String Art
Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; Smiuchin, Pinterest; String Art Diy & Pinterest; FeedBitz.

Method:

1.    Pick your canvas and prep with spray paint or leave as is.
2.    Choose a design that you would like to create. Pinterest is a great source of ideas (see the image above for ours).
3.    Once you’ve chosen a design, you can either draw the outline on the canvas or make a stencil on paper, using a print out or drawing it free hand.
4.    Place the paper shape on the canvas and start placing nails and pins on the outlines of the shape. (Don’t stick the paper to the canvas though, you will want to remove it later)
5.    Once the outline has been placed using nails or pins, you can get your string ready.
6.    Start weaving the string randomly from all of the nails/pins, until the pattern appears within your shape and you are happy with how it looks.
7.    Tie a knot at the end of the string somewhere where it is not so noticeable. You’re done!

What you’ll need:
-    A wood board or corkboard
-    Nails or pins
-    Coloured string (How long is a piece of string? – You decide!)
-    Spray paint (to colour the wood, if you desire)

Difficulty: Easy (depending on design)

2.    Thrifty Makeovers

Thrifty Makeovers Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; LiveLoveDIY, Pinterest; Apartment Therapy & Pinterest;  Scottericksonart.

Thrifty Makeovers
Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; LiveLoveDIY, Pinterest; Apartment Therapy & Pinterest; Scottericksonart.

If you’ve ever been op shopping, you’ll have noticed the large amounts of paintings/prints that are in quirky or ornate frames. The images aren’t always what you would call the ‘perfect fit’ in your home décor, but this might change your mind…

Method:

1.    Browse an op shop for your painting or print. Think generic, like flowers, portraits of people or landscape shots of meadows, water and bridges.
2.    Paint over the top!
3.    Okay, so the last step was a big vague, but it’s completely up to you. The above images show how people have transformed their thrifty art. For example, creating a quirky portrait by painting a block of colour over the existing painting, painting over an original painting of flowers using sploshes of colour or adding geometric patterns or stripes over paintings or prints. Get creative.

What you’ll need:
-    An op shop painting or print
-    Some paint (as cheap as you want) and utensils
-    Tape to use on the canvas for painting perfect lines.

Difficulty: Easy

3.    Crayon Colour Fade

Crayon Colour Fade  Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; KidsKubby, Pinterest; Etsy & Pinterest;  Girl Meets Country Boy.

Crayon Colour Fade
Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; KidsKubby, Pinterest; Etsy & Pinterest; Girl Meets Country Boy.

Get nostalgic with Crayola crayons (these are best, due to their wax ingredients) and make a grown-up artwork with your childhood colouring companions.

Method:

1.    Pick a canvas size and decide which way you will hang it on the wall and which direction you would like the melted crayon to travel in. This will determine how many crayons you will use for the artwork.
2.    Once you’ve determined the side you’d like the melted crayon to enter from, line up the crayons in a rainbow formation (colours similar fading into each other) and hot glue them to a cardboard panel that you can attach to the top of the canvas by sticky taping the cardboard behind the canvas, etc. Make sure the crayons are hanging off of the cardboard panel and onto the canvas, as this will ensure the crayons are not visible on the final piece and you won’t be left with a white gap where the crayons once were.
3.    The fun part! Melting the crayons with a hairdryer. Use a hairdryer on a low setting to melt the crayons and see the wax begin to drip down the canvas.
4.    Once this is done, you can choose to do a few things. A) take another piece of cardboard and scrape down the artwork to blend and bring the melted lines lower down on the canvas; B) Turn the canvas in a different direction and attempt to heat the wax into another formation; C) Heat any remaining wax bumps to even them out.
5.    You’re done! Colourful and creative.

Alternative options:
1.    You can hold the crayon randomly on the canvas and create swirls and patterns, rather than lines, by melting as you go.
2.    You can use the original method, above, and choose to have a stencil on the canvas to avoid wax dripping on that particular shape/area. This will result in a white pattern, object or shape being left behind as the ‘hero’. You can always add a silhouette drawing for extra effect too.

What you’ll need:
-    Crayons (Wax based)
-    Hairdryer
-    Canvas
-    Cardboard
-    Hot glue gun
-    Sticky tape

Difficulty: Medium

4. Woolly wall decor

Wool Wall Decor Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; I Spy DIY, Pinterest; Decoist & Pinterest;  Apartment Therapy.

Wool Wall Decor
Image credits from left to right: Pinterest; I Spy DIY, Pinterest; Decoist & Pinterest; Apartment Therapy.

Method:

1. Cut the string into equally long pieces (perhaps 150cm each)
2. Grab the middle of the yarn pieces and place under the stick or rod and then pull through the two ends through the loop to tighten the string around the stick or rod. Pull tight.
3. Repeat across the length of the stick or rod, mixing up the colours, as desired, as you go.
4. When complete, tie the rope or string on either ends of the wool to keep in place.
5. Cut the hanging string in straight lines, as desired.
5. Hang on the wall and enjoy!

EXTRA: You can even choose to do fancy knots at the top if you’re willing to put in extra time and effort to mastering the knots.

What you’ll need:
-    Colourful yarns of wool
-    Scissors (sharp)
-    Rope or string (strong enough to hold the artwork on the wall)
-    A stick or wooden rod

Difficulty: Easy

6.    Pixel Art

Pixel Art  Image credits: Pinterest; The Bold Abode.

Pixel Art
Image credits: Pinterest; The Bold Abode.

This one will take you some time to complete, but if that means you’re pre-occupied and can’t procrastinate in the form of online shopping or heading out unnecessarily for a catch up that you can’t afford, then this is perfffffect. You’re welcome.

Method:

1. Pick an image; the more colourful it is, the better.
2. You will need to pixelate the image into triangles (If you have Photoshop, click here for a tutorial).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEGi_DNlYIw
3. While in Photoshop you can choose your exact canvas size, so that when you grid it you can copy the grids on to the real canvas.
4. Grid your canvas with a light pencil line, in the same ratios as the grid on your pixelated image in Photoshop (or printed).
5. Start painting! You will need paint that can easily be mixed together to create different variations of colour/shades.
6. This could take a while… but you’re going to love the end result.

(If we confused you with these steps, check out The Bold Abode’s step-by-step guide with detailed pictures here) http://www.theboldabode.com/diy-pixel-wall-art.html

What you’ll need:
-    A canvas
-    A high-res image of your choice
-    Access to Photoshop
-    A printer
-    A ruler
-    A pencil/pen
-    Paint & utensils

Difficulty: Hard

THE HOMEBODY ISSUE

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Article by Candice Jackson

Candice Jackson is a former Journalist of Style Magazines. She has an uncontrollable sweet tooth, an irrational fear of birds and a love of travel. Candice believes in the Yes Man Philosophy.

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