DIY: Children's Room Wall Art

First off, I hope everyone had a nice, and meaningful, Memorial Day weekend.  I am so thankful for all the people who have given their lives in defense of our country - it's so important to remember their lives.  We owe so much to those fallen heroes and their ultimate sacrifice to protect and preserve our freedom.

We didn't do much of anything over the weekend except spend time together as a family.  Oh, and Derek and I squeezed in a date on Saturday! Our first since Clyde was born.  It was really nice.  And I didn't sit down at the computer at all, so today I thought I'd share a project I worked on when I decorated Wyatt's big boy room several months ago.  Creating these plaques was really easy, and I think they would be pretty adaptable to different colors and themes for any kid's room!

Last fall, when I was putting together Wyatt's new room, there was this awkward space right above his bed that I wasn't quite sure what to do with.  Most of the decorations from his nursery filled up the other walls, but I didn't know what to hang above his bed (it doesn't help that I get paranoid about things falling off the wall and onto my sleeping children, so anything really heavy or that involved glass was out).  

I kind of wanted to get some sort of plaque or printed art set for that space, so I looked into different types of nursery/kid's room art.  But everything is so expensive!  I didn't want to fork out $40+ just for a couple items to hang there, so I decided to make some myself.

This is what I did!

Step One: Get some wooden boards.  I asked my dad how he thought I should go about getting some little square boards for a project, and he said he had a bunch of wood lying around and offered to cut some for me himself (thanks Dad)! I asked him for three 8x8 inch boards (they are about a half inch thick).

Step Two: Paint and distress the boards.  I wanted to try out a distressing technique to make the paint on the boards look worn, and I followed a tutorial I found on Pinterest, which I cannot for the life of me find again! Isn't that how it works?  So I'll summarize here.  

I painted the boards my base colors.  Next, I applied a thin layer of petroleum jelly in certain spots.  Then I painted with a different color over that.  I just used acrylic craft paint that I bought at Hobby Lobby.

After the second layer of paint dried, I used some sandpaper to take off the top layer of paint.  The petroleum jelly makes the paint come off easier!  Actually a little too easily, because I feel like some of the "distressed" spots looks a little chunkier than I wanted.  If you want a more natural distressed look, I'd recommend using q-tips to apply it more specifically.  For my purposes the bigger spots looked fine though!

Hint: Be careful after you apply the second layer of paint, because the petroleum jelly causes the paint to stay somewhat wet over the spots where you applied it - don't set it down on something that might stain!

Step Three: Create some silhouettes to trace onto your boards.  Next I had to decide how to decorate my plaques.  I wanted to do a transportation theme, because Wyatt is so into cars and trucks right now.  I found some silhouettes of a car, truck, and dump truck, and I tried to replicate them by sketching the shapes.  I used simple silhouettes, so it wasn't too hard.

Once I had my drawings the way I liked them, I laid them on top of the wood, and used a pen to trace the lines I had already drawn, pressing firmly so that it would leave the outline in the wood.

Then I just painted inside the lines.

Step Four: Hang your children's room art!  After all the paint was dry, I nailed hooks onto the backs and hung them up in Wyatt's room!

They work perfectly in that space above Wyatt's bed, and I am really happy with the way they turned out, and the total cost was . . . I think three dollars for the paint?  Not much.  They were pretty easy to make, and the simple shapes are perfect for a little boy's room!
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Kate Craig said...

they look great!

Melanie said...

Love it..and I bet Wyatt does too!

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