Sunday, March 9, 2014

Painting Lately Part 1

There are some large, blank walls in the Amber Bottle House currently.  And by large, I mean I haven't found any store-bought pieces large enough to be in the same scale... the oars are the only things I have that come even close.

So it was time to craft.

The first project on the list is something for the formerly-pink living room (which is currently a repository of random I-don't-know-what-to-do-with-this items):

My current vision is adding a little red to my unifying color scheme of blue and green to make the room feel more Americana-ish.  The inspiration for this came from these finds:

two vintage calendar prints of farm scenes...

... and my flag from Upscaled Pallets.

Not too much red- just a little.

With ideas a-brewing, Grant & I went to the hardware store for some lumber and other sundries.  I found a stain-grade, 24"x48" edge-glued pine panel (meaning it's several pieces of pine strips put together side-by-side, but not by tongue-and-groove).  At around $20, it was cheaper than a lot of similarly-sized canvases, so I added it to the buggie (yes, I call them buggies- not shopping carts).

Since the piece is oblong, and we're so happy to be back in our home state, what better thing to paint on it but the Tennessee state flag?

I laid the wood panel out on the driveway (yay for the first warm day!) and got started painting.

First, I used a rag to wipe on Minwax Whitewash Pickling to the whole thing. This way, anything white on the flag would show the wood grain.  (The other option would be to use white paint layered onto the background.  This would be easier than painting around details, but the wood grain wouldn't show as well.)

I taped off the area that would be blue and the white vertical stripe.

 Creating the blue circle within the circles was pretty tricky (if only I had had a compass!).  I eyeballed about how large I wanted the blue circle, then cut a string half the length across the circle. (The string should be the length of the radius of the circle, if you remember high school geometry.)  I tied to string to a pencil, held the string's end in the center of the flag with my left hand, and used my right hand to draw a circle.

I cut a second piece of string about 1.5" longer and repeated the process to create a second, larger circle.

I drew a star using a straight-edge on a piece of paper cut it out to create a make-shift stencil.

Once the stars were drawn, I painted around them... very carefully.  This part took the longest and was exceedingly tedious.  It was still worth it to have the white wash stars showing through the blue.

The red paint was on the mis-tint shelf at Lowe's for $2.50, and the navy blue was just leftover craft paint.

I gave the edges and surface a light sand, and voila!

Nothing about it is perfect: my lines are a little wavy, the paint is slathered on the wood a little unevenly, the stars are a slightly smaller than they are on the traditional flag.  Why? I wanted it to feel like something someone hand-painted years ago (without stencils, the perfect-size paint brush, or the internet showing them what the flag looked like).

I will post pictures once it's hung... and the rest of the living room doesn't look like such a hot mess.

Happy Sunday!

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