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Posted by Maxine Cleminson - - 4 comments

We're in a rental property while expats here in Texas, and while it's lovely and neutral... I was getting a bit tired of the dreaded beige! After several years living with a bedroom decor colored in varying shades of white-cream-beige-khaki-tan-brown-chocolate I decided enough was enough and an injection of color was required!  Not being able to redecorate and not wanting to spend a fortune, made my choices limited, so I went for the time-tested route of changing my bedding!  I found a gorgeous duvet cover set in England when back for a visit in the summer, and joy-of-joys... Debenhams, the store, shipped to the US for a mere £10 (cheaper than paying excess baggage)!

The set I chose has glorious shades of slate grey, taupe, plum, teal and chartreuse (despite only recently learning the name of this shade of yellowy green, it is my new favourite color!).  Lush!  A new set of plum colored sheets, a few coordinating pillows and I was in new boudoir heaven.... except that it didn't zing the way I hoped it would.  I think the problem was the sheer expanse of beige still dominating the room... walls, carpet and curtains!!!  What was required was some bold, coordinating wall art to really make the colors pop!  However, Him Indoors wasn't sold on the idea of investing in a new piece of artwork and to top it all, I was really struggling to find something with exactly the right shades to coordinate with my new bedding!

Previously, I had created a statement 'canvas' for our wall using some cheap, cotton fabric from Ikea.  A simple wooden frame created from unfinished pine batons and a staple gun was all that was required.  I'd made coordinating pillows from fabrics in the same range and it had worked very well (if a little beige).  So I set out on a search to find some new fabric to recover the frame.  No joy.  Nothing seemed to work, and if I did find a fabric in the right colors, invariably it was in some chintzy floral pattern that did not match the clean, modern lines of my bedding.  Frustration.

So then I had a mini-brainwave!  Why not simply re-color the existing fabric to match my duvet set?

You will need...
  • A wooden frame with some almost, but not quite perfect fabric stretched and stapled around it. If you don't have the tools to make a wooden frame, take a look at my post about using air conditioning filters to make a stretched canvas frame!
  • Acrylic paints in the colors you want (remember that acrylic paints dry to a slightly darker shade than they appear when wet.
  • A paintbrush (I used a flat, wide one and a fine tipped one to do precision edges)
  • Masking tape if you don't have a steady hand ... acrylic paint is virtually impossible to remove so mistakes are difficult to erase!
  • Old painting clothes ... believe me!

The beauty of acryclic paints are that they hold their colors beautifully when painted onto fabrics, even when the color of the fabric underneath is dark or strong!  They aren't a substitute for fabric paint when you are intending to wear, launder or iron the fabric as they dry quite stiff and so can crack and peel off.  However, for the purpose of creating wall art they are perfect!  And they are cheap!  I picked up 3 small bottles of acrylic paint from a local craft shop for less than a dollar each.

Then you simply paint your fabric... either with your own design, or like me, re-coloring an existing one!

I was delighted with the results and can't believe what a difference the wall art has made in pulling it all together... all for a few bucks!  Check out the before and after pics below...


This was our old bedroom with  the dreaded beige!

More beige!

In our new home, the darker shade of beige really dominated the room and made the whole scheme look drab.  I couldn't even face hanging the canvas on the wall.

Boring beige!


New boudoir with a color pop!

The wall canvas coordinated perfectly!

Perfect coordinating wall art for under $3!

Also see http://www.jenniferrizzo.com/ Friday Linky Party for other ideas with a 'pop of color'!

4 Responses so far.

  1. Genius!

    Yet another reason I need to make the drive to IKEA...they have great fabric.

  2. Mama Max says:

    Thanks! They really do have great fabrics ... and usually only about $5 a yard. And with a bit of paint you can re-color them to match your decor perfectly!

    I've been trying to avoid going to our local Ikea ... firstly, it's not very twin friendly with only single seat carts, but invariably I end up spending a small fortune!!! :-D

  3. such fun color! love the large scale of the artwork!

  4. Mama Max says:

    Thanks, Cassie!

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