The more painted rugs I see, the more convinced I am of the concept’s brilliance. I’m not saying that we should be dumping paint on our hand-knotted wool rugs instead of cleaning them, but it’s great to see the ugly-yet-durable flooring of the world receive a new lease on life. During her home renovations, Jennifer was able to create a modern, graphic rug that suits her needs, fits her style and cost her next to nothing. Clever transformation, Jennifer! — Kate
Time: 3 hours (not including drying time)
Cost: Free (everything was on hand)
1. Prep and prime. Vacuum the rug thoroughly and prepare your work area. Roll on the first coat of primer. Don’t forget to paint the edges of your rug! Let dry overnight.
Did the rug soak up all of the primer? Is it dry? If so, add another coat.
2. Paint your base color. You should have a fairly even coat of primer on your rug, so now you can roll on your base color. The rug will look splotchy and seem like it’s sucking up all of your paint. Don’t worry! After a coat or two of the base color, it will even out and start drying faster. Let dry thoroughly between coats. I think it’s best to let each coat dry overnight. Two to three coats are needed to get a nice, even base.
3. Add the design. Using painters’ tape, mask off your design or use a stencil. Or get really wild and paint something freehand! I wanted something simple and graphic, and since this was the entryway to the family room, I thought an arrow pointing the way would be perfect. If you work with painters’ tape, use the handle of your paintbrush to really push the tape down on the bumpy surface. Know that if you want straight lines, you will still have some touching up to do. Apply your paint in an up-and-down pouncing stroke with the sponge brush to push the paint into the grooves and keep your paint from spreading under the tape. The acrylic craft paint should dry within an hour. Go back over it and touch up any lighter areas, and then very carefully remove your tape.
4. Finish it off. Use your small, flat angled brush to touch up your lines. This is kind of tedious, but I found it relaxing in a way, as it requires a steady hand and total concentration. Very Zen. Once your design is dry, finish it off with a coat of polyurethane. You’ll notice how easily this goes on because of all the paint on your rug!
That’s it. You’re done! The rug is incredibly durable and quite a conversation piece. Your friends will exclaim, “You painted a rug???” Yep. Sure did. — Jennifer
Have a Before & After you’d like to share? Shoot me an email with your images right here! (Low res, under 500k per image, please.)
CLICK HERE for to see Solana’s finished pet-supply cabinet after the jump!
I love seeing pet-oriented projects, particularly because, for some reason, most pet supplies have not yet figured out how to be attractive to humans. Solana’s dog-supply cabinet is not only a great reuse of an old cabinet destined for the garbage, but it’s also an attractive and unobtrusive solution for pet-supply storage. The built-in chalkboard to keep track of vet appointments and vaccinations is a brilliant addition. Great work, Solana!
Time: 3 days (working in stages)
Cost: $17 (cabinet was free, plus supplies)
Basic Steps: I was about to drive this cabinet to Goodwill when I decided I would experiment with it one last time. Right after deciding to keep it, the first thing that popped into my head was, “I’m going to make Miguel (my dog) a closet!” I’ve been obsessed with big, bold stripes lately, both in fashion and interiors, so I thought I would give it a try.
I’ve tried painting stripes before, but they always seemed to bleed under the tape, so I knew that using these bold, contrasting colors was going to take some time and patience. I’m not sure if the quality of tape helped, but it worked out great! I used to buy painters’ tape from discount stores (2 for $1.00), but I soon realized why they were so inexpensive, and that’s where some of the problems arose in past projects (tape that doesn’t stick or tape that leaves residue).
I used to rush some of my DIY projects to fit them into my busy schedule, and that’s when mistakes are made. My advice is to take your time, let the paint dry, buy the right products and make sure you enjoy the process. I took my time on this project, and I’m so happy with the results. Not only is it great to look at, but it has also really helped to have everything in one place. — Solana