My sister was helping her friend move house recently and one of her tasks was rehoming all the things that weren’t coming to the new house. Throughout the day I would receive texts saying “want any of this?” accompanied by a photo:
To which the hoarder inside me wanted to scream “YES! Bring me ALL THE THINGS!”. Luckily, sanity prevailed and I only ended up taking the bare necessities. Necessities such as this giant, half-finished Cheshire Cat painting:
Get a load of this fabulous … cat. I propped it up on my drill box to get a rough idea of its size and LOVED the oversized scale of it. This wall of our laundry nook has stumped me for ages and until I know exactly what I want to hang here (shelves? picture gallery? kids’ art? weird hippy bohemian plant wall?) I might as well fill it with some oversized canvas art for the time being.
The Cheshire Cat painting would have been perfect for a kid’s bedroom but it was a bit too much for our simple laundry nook (which is also part of our dining/family room). I wanted to try a more minimal look by DIYing some quote art.
This was the type of look I was going for:
After painting a billion coats of white paint on the canvas I finally had a clean slate for my quote art. I wanted to add a wooden frame for some contrast between the white canvas and the white wall/tiles. As luck would have it, one of the necessities I’d grabbed from my sister’s friend was a large, wooden easel.
As I’ve never needed an easel and didn’t foresee any future need, I hastily took it to pieces so I could build a frame for my canvas. I filled the holes and stained the frame a darker colour to match our dark jarrah floors.
Next, I used a really simple method for the painted quotes:
1. Print out your chosen quotes.
2. Colour the back of the paper with a lead pencil (or if you’re transferring to a dark background, colour with white chalk).
3. Place your printout on the canvas and trace the outlines. When you take the paper away, you’re left with a faint outline of pencil (or chalk).
(This was an awkward position to work in … if only I’d had an easel …)
4. Using a fine paintbrush, paint over your pencil/chalk outline with the colour of your choice.
Once it was framed out I realised it was now too big for the laundry nook wall (because in an overzealous fit of enthusiasm I didn’t bother to measure my space). The frame would have covered the power point (which would bug me every time I needed to plug something in). When you live in a small house, it is surprisingly difficult to find an empty wall big enough to hang a ridiculously large framed canvas on. I ended up taking down my mirror and clock from the planked wall and hanging our new quote art there.
The quotes are all paraphrased from great men I admire for very different reasons.
- The Dalai Lama’s actual quote is: Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.
- Albert Einstein’s actual quote is: I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.
- Winston Churchill’s actual quote is: Never give in, never, never, never …
I used a freestyle handwriting type of font because I wanted it to look casual and easy but now that I’m looking at it, I think maybe I want to see a more formal font. Maybe? I don’t know anymore. If (when) I change my mind, I can always paint over it.
I’m pretty happy with myself for making a gigantic piece of art … for free. It does still leave me with a blank laundry nook wall though. I’m leaning toward weird, hippy, bohemian plant wall – what do you think?