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Easy DIY Wall Art That’s SO Simple And Looks Expensive (But Isn’t!)

Easy DIY Wall Art

Who’s ready for an easy DIY project? We sent a survey out to our fabulous subscribers asking what type of content you’d all like to read about in the ‘home’ category. And a few of you responded, “DIY projects, please.” So, your wish is my command! Today I’m tackling an easy, textured wall art project. Notice the continual use of the word easy?! You don’t have to be an art aficionado, nor do you need to be particularly crafty for this project. I decided to create this wall art after ordering a large canvas of textured art for my office that was delayed and then mysteriously canceled all together 😣 I set out (with low expectations, mind you) to create something similar, and…it was actually really fun. This is a great project for kids, grandkids or just if you have that really large wall that needs some love!

Speaking of wall art, if you need any help designing a gallery wall, I share some helpful tips here.

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Why DIY?

Honestly, when it comes to most of my DIY projects, I do ask myself, “Why?” Why did I waste a Saturday, or why didn’t I just buy what I wanted, and why didn’t I hire a professional?  BUT this textured wall art is not expensive to make, it’s very forgiving in terms of mistakes, and you can customize the size and shape to fit any wall in your home that needs a little something. And it looks pretty similar to high-end pieces at some of my favorite retailers. In fact, here are a few that I love at various price points…

But I do think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how simple it is to create your own! So, let’s get started.

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Supplies

You’ll need the following…

  • Blank wall canvas – any size you like or 2-3 same size canvas for a side-by-side piece. I used a 25″ x 40″ wrapped canvas from Michael’s.
  • Spatulas – different sizes. I used a pack of 3.
  • Spatula with grooves or notches
  • Sponge brush or dish sponge
  • Plastic fork and spoon
  • Spackle – how much you need depends on the size of your piece. I used most of a 1-quart tub.
  • *Optional* Paint – I really wanted to keep my piece white on white, but you could easily add acrylic paint or spray paint to yours if you want some color (we’ll get to that in a minute).

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Get Creative

Place your canvas on a worktable covered with newspaper or an old sheet. Now, the fun part! Next, add your spackle (aka joint compound or filler NOT plaster) to the canvas and start moving it around with your spatulas in different directions. It’s best to start with a thin layer and add from there. It’s OK if it’s thicker in some spots. If you create a pattern you don’t like, just smooth it out or scrape it off and start over. You have about 15 minutes before it starts to harden and LOTS of time before it dries completely so you don’t have to worry about being super quick. The spackle is pretty forgiving. The consistency reminds me of buttercream frosting.

TIP: Be sure to close the lid on the spackle container after each time you open it because it will dry out over time!

 

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Add Texture

Use the flat spatula, grooved spatula, sponge, spoon, and fork to make different shapes, and patterns. The photos above are examples of what each tool can create. If you are creating 2 canvas pieces, you can make an arch with the grooved spatula that starts on one canvas and continues on to the second. There is no right or wrong way to do this. Just have fun! As Bob Ross would say, “There are no mistakes, only happy accidents!”

TIP: Don’t make your layers too thick because it will take FOREVER to dry and once dry, the spackle might crack.

 

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Final Steps

Once you have your desired pattern, be sure to scrape off the sides of the canvas and remove any stray spackle. Let your canvas dry for about 24 hours. You can feel the back of the canvas to determine dryness since you don’t want to touch your artwork and risk messing it up. Once dry, it’s ready to hang and voila!

I watched a few YouTube videos for inspiration in creating this project so if you need a visual check out these…

DIY Minimal Textured Art On Canvas
We Tested The Compound Art Trend

Adding Paint

If you want to add paint, there are 2 options.

1. Put some spackle in a disposable cup or bowl and a few drops of acrylic paint in your preferred color and mix. A little goes a long way. Then you can add the colored spackle to your canvas.
2. Wait until the canvas is completely dry and spray-paint the whole thing with one or a few different colors.

Very Extra

You can also glue layers of string or twine like this one to your canvases and lightly spackle over it. This provides some added texture if you are more of a next-level artist 😎

Do you think you’ll try this easy DIY wall art? Are there any other DIY projects you’d like me to test out next? If so, leave me a note in the comments and I’ll do my best! And, if you want to be included in future content surveys, gain access to awesome style resources AND exclusive content, be sure to sign up for the newsletter here.

Meet the writer's series, home writer, Susan Harold
Susan Harold
Susan is the Busbee Style Digital Content Editor and a contributing writer. She has spent the last 25 years working in the magazine publishing industry as a content, circulation, and marketing consultant. Susan resides in sunny San Diego, CA with her husband and pathetically perfect pup, Rusty, and loves visiting with her 2 sons when they're home from college. With a passion for pretty things, witty words, travel, and all things family, writing HOME content comes naturally because, truth be told, her homebody game is strong! There’s no place like home!
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6 thoughts on “Easy DIY Wall Art That’s SO Simple And Looks Expensive (But Isn’t!)

  1. This spoke to me! Five years ago I thought the exact same thing – “This picture from Arhaus is $699. I bet I could do that!” And a new hobby began. While the pieces I’ve made aren’t really worthy of hanging up where other people can see them, it’s still lots of fun and gives me a new appreciation for artists.

    1. Thank you for sharing, April! It’s definitely a relaxing hobby, isn’t it? I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Have a great week! Susan

  2. I love this! So fun and easy to do.

    I have a fine arts degree the this biggest thing i hear is, “I can’t do that, I’m not arty” but you don’t have to be. Anyone came make art, it just has to make you feel good, and who knows you might discover a new passion – anyone can be an artist!

    I recently suffered a concussion, and the one thing keeping me sane is my art.

    1. Hi Sylvie! I’m so glad you liked this idea. I can only imagine what someone with a fine arts degree could create. I sure hope you recover quickly from your concussion. Sending healing thoughts your way! Thanks so much for your sweet note! xx Susan

  3. I have a wall behind my couch that has been bare since we moved into this house 7 years ago. I’ve purchased several mirrors and artwork of various styles and it all went back to the store. I plan to try this fun project and see how it goes. The netural-vibe seems like the ticket to filling the space and adding interest without being over the top. My picky husband may actually like this.

    1. Hi Julie! Thanks so much for your note. I’d love to hear how it turns out and if the hubs likes it 🙂 Good luck! xx Susan

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