If you have been reading my blog with any regularity, it’s safe to say that you know that I like to paint stuff. I particularly love painting things a) in bright colors and b) that aren’t “supposed” to be painted.
A few months ago, I took it a step further by painting something that is actually supposed to keep other things from being painted.
Confused yet? Yeah, me, too.
Anyway, my friends at my favorite store in the world – Home Depot – sent me a box of paint brushes, drop cloths, painters tape and stencils and asked if I would create an outdoor rug out of a canvas drop cloth. You know I couldn’t say no to that challenge! They sent me a few color palettes to choose from and a gift card to pick up some paint at my local store.
Is it any surprise that I chose the brightest of the sample palette choices? It shouldn’t be!
I honestly had my doubts that a canvas drop cloth would make a good faux outdoor rug, but I always trust that my friends at Home Depot won’t steer me wrong. I washed and dried the drop cloth to help remove the folds and wrinkles and laid it out flat over another drop cloth in my entry way. Using a foam roller, I primed it with a basic Kilz latex primer and let it dry over night.
I decided to give the rug a pattern with a starburst effect, but I wanted to give it a modern twist. I sketched out my design on a sheet of paper, and then I painted the entire rug my base color, Oyster Shell by Glidden. It’s a soft off-white.
Using my sketch as a guide, I used 1-inch width painters tape to lay out some lines on the canvas. Like a starburst, I wanted them to all radiate from the same point. I decided to make that point 2/3 of the way down the drop cloth. I didn’t measure the distance between the lines, because I wanted some sections to be thin and others to be quite wide. I took special care to press the tape down really well to avoid any paint bleeding underneath the lines.
Then, I painted each section at a time using a good quality paint brush. I started at the top left corner of the cloth, and just painted section by section.
I gave each section two coats of paint. I found that the dark colors (like the navy) covered pretty well with one coat, but the really bright colors (like the orange, green and red) needed two coats for the colors to be fully saturated. There were a few spots that the paint did bled underneath my tape, so I went back with a small artist sized paint brush and touched up those spots.
I let the paint dry for a full 24 hours, and then I applied two coats of Rustoleum’s Ultimate Polyurethane using a good quality paint brush. That will give it enough protection that it could easily be used in an outdoor space. I let that poly dry for about 48 hours and then boxed up my ‘rug’ and sent it to Home Depot’s professional photographer.
Now, I will be featured in Home Depot’s free Style Guide app for the iPad. How cool is that? Even more fun is that I’m “above the swipe.” I feel like I’m “above the fold” in the New York Times.
Each season, Home Depot releases a new version of the Style Guide both via the app and online. It’s filled with decor ideas, DIY tips and tricks, and lots of other cool stuff. The summer version of the Style Guide comes out any day now, so if you have an iPad, head over to the App Store and download it so you will be ready when “my” version comes out.
I loved the way the canvas drop cloth turned out. In fact, I’m planning to do another one to hang on the giant, empty wall above my staircase. I think that it will be a cheap and easy way to create a piece of custom artwork that is quite large in scale. I need to figure out another cool pattern, though.
How about you? Would you what colors would you paint your custom drop cloth floor (or wall!) covering?
Very cool. It looks great!!!
I love this Idea – I really need an outdoor rug.
Christine Leahy says
AWESOME! What an honor to be featured!!! I don’t know you but I’m so proud of you! And I’ll be doing this right away!! Can’t wait!
I was actually thinking about this last wednesday night, just as I was drifting off to sleep. I truly believe folks thoughts go out into the ethers and fall upon those with an open mind . This same thing keeps happening to me again and again.
I know exactly what color I’d want and actually saved a photo as I contemplated doing it this morning..
I am amazed at your result but even more amazed to learn again that Thoughts are Things and move around the universe .. That’ll certainly teach me to do my best to keep my thoughts Positive:)
Mary Brock says
Love, love, love your attitude. I pick up so many ideas in different sleep stages I wake up ready to roll each morning. You are so right , Those ideas are just all out there, ready to inspire anyone who has an open mind. Even one small idea can grow into something amazing… keep your mind in gear ready to receive lol…….
Trina @ Let's Just Build a House says
So cool! And so cool to be “above the fold” lol
Painting floorcloths has been around for a long time. I have a book on it–had it for years, keep wanting to do this, never getting around to it. Now that I’m embracing the bare concrete floors as part of my eclectic industrial cottage funky whatever style, I’d like to do several. You just have to remember to place the squiggee non-slip rubber…gah! where are my words today?…thingies under them if you use them indoors.
For those of us who can only copy fantastic ideas, thanks for coming up with so many. Love the rug and congratulations on being featured.
Very cool indeed! (You know, I thought it was the Union Jack at first though.) 🙂
Lifestyle Crafts says
Fun idea! Turned out great! 🙂
i love this idea! can it be used also indoor? i have carpet in dining area and thought this could work ? any thoughts??
Hi Georgina! I think it should work just fine, put you may need to pick up your chairs instead of scooting them. I’d put one of those non skid rug pads underneath it so it doesn’t bunch up.
Glenda - The Artful Daughter says
I was looking for some directions to do exactly this for my art/sewing room to protect my hardwood floors. Love what you did!!! Mine will always be a work in progress with paint drips, resin pours, thread ends and more. Thank you for the instructions.
Awesome idea…. I was wanting to buy rugs for the kids rooms, but now I think I’ll let them help me “design” their own, it’ll make them that much more special!!!! Congrats on being featured! What an honor!
Thanks so much, Katrina!
can this be washed? any suggestions for the best type of paint to use? acrylic? fabric paint?
can this be washed? any suggestions for the best type of paint to use? acrylic? fabric paint??
Lindsay Ballard says
I probably wouldn’t put it in the washer. I just used latex paint. But, I guess if you used fabric paint it could be!
Yes you can! Cold gentle cycle. Air dry
Just found this post, and I love the idea!! Do you,by chance, remember what colors you used. I love what you picked out.
how is the latex paint holding up?
A good way to keep paint from bleeding under tape is to paint a light coat of the base paint over the edge of the tape. If it bleeds through it is the same colour as the base. I have painted many things in my life and when I figured this trick out I was very happy. Trying to fix things with a small paint brush takes time and wasted time is money lost.
How did this rug wear over time? I’d love to know.
Thank you Lindsay…I just completed my rug and I love it!! Wonderful idea…and super economical, not to mention way more fun then just buying a rug.