DIY Form Board Fabric Wall Art Panel Décor

Updated on April 26, 2018
DIY wall art
DIY wall art | Source

DIY Wall Art with Fabric and Insulation Foam

I've been out of college for a few years, and I'm really over the posters-only decorating scheme. Unfortunately, it seems like even discount home stores sell canned art for $50-$100. Sick of cruising the web for tutorials on wall art and finding things that either required more equipment than I have or don't look like anything I want in my home, I began thinking.

I love sewing, so I always have leftover fabric on hand. I also had some pink insulation foam sitting around. Inspired by what I had on hand, fond memories of stenciling as a child and the desire to own something sort of like an item I'd seen at World Market, minus the price tag, I figured out how to create DIY, customizable wall art for less than 1/10 the price of buying it ready-made.

What you Need to Make Wall Art

  • Insulation foam
  • Fabric
  • A staple gun or stapler
  • Stencils
  • Craft paint
  • Paint brush

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How to Make Your Own Wall Art

My foam board was conveniently cut into some nice wall panel sized pieces. If yours is not, use a ruler or yardstick to measure off the panel you would like and cut it out using a utility knife. When cutting foam, I find it is easiest to draw the cutting lines and then hold the ruler along the line to give a surface to cut against.

Next, prepare your fabric. Spread it out on the floor or your work table and position the foam on the fabric's corner so that the fabric sticks out about two inches from the edge of the foam. You will probably need to cut at least two sides of the fabric. Since I used linen, I used a technique called cutting by the thread because it allows you to cut the fabric in a perfectly straight line. If you don't know how to do this, check out my hub on this easy technique. Unless you want your wall art to be wrinkly, I advise you iron the fabric before attaching it.

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How to Attach Fabric to Foam Board

Attaching the fabric is fairly easy, You can use a staple gun, an open household stapler, tape, hot glue - you name it. I cannot recommend thumb tacks, though. I tried them just to see if they would work. Because the tack part is so short, they pulled out of the foam almost immediately. Remember that, no matter what you use on the back, even if you end up having to use Duck Tape, no one will see the back of the finished project, so don't stress. What matters is that the fabric on front is as flat and even as possible.

I thought of my foam as a gift and the cloth as wrapping paper. This helped me figure out how to fold the corners. The most important thing is trying to make the fabric lay as smoothly as possible. I actually stapled everything in place and then went back around tightening the fabric down and re-stapling. Just make sure you do not over stress or stretch the fabric.

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Plan your designTap straight up and down
Plan your design
Plan your design | Source
Tap straight up and down
Tap straight up and down | Source

How to Stencil

After your fabric is attached, but before you even open your paint, look at your stencils and plan your art. Move the stencils around on the fabric, if you need to, to get an idea of how things will look.

When you stencil, it is important to remember several things. First, make sure your stencil is held securely in place. You can use tape or just hold it very firmly, which is what I did. Second, make sure you brush is not dripping with paint. This will make the paint run under the stencil. Third, make sure to tap the brush straight up and down. This makes it less likely that paint will spill out under the edge of the stencil, ruining the design. Also, make sure you lift the stencil off the fabric very carefully so you do not smudge the still wet paint. Last, always wash, or at least wipe off, your stencil as soon as you use it. If you paint a design and then use the stencil again without cleaning it, you may get stray, leftover paint somewhere you don't want it!

How to Use a Stencil

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How to Hang Wall Art

I used some cotton twine to hang my new pieces of art. I cut an appropriate length of twine, tied a knot in each end and stapled it in place. Because the panels are so lightweight, you do not need to use drywall screws. I actually hung one of the panels on a thumbtack!

I already owned several of the items I needed, so I spend a total of $8 on this project - and I have enough left over for several more panels. I like them better than most store bought art I've seen recently, and they were a fraction of the cost.

I hope you can put these techniques to use and create your own unique wall art that matches your home and your budget. Stenciling is an amazing way to personalize any space on a budget as stenciling can be done on walls, furniture, art or textiles, like pillow cases.

Questions & Answers

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      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Awesome! I hope you love them as much as I do mine!

      • profile image

        Tarra 

        5 years ago

        That makes me so excited! I am going to do three of these with maybe linen fabric and the same stencil...probably brown paint. I hope they turn out as nice as yours! I am hanging them above my couch.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        It is a Martha Stewart stencil!

      • profile image

        Tarra 

        5 years ago

        Is that a martha stewart stencil? i think I got the same one for this project...or else it looks very similar!

      • CanvasArtShop profile image

        CanvasArtShop 

        5 years ago

        Really cool idea, never though of doing something like this also looks super easy which is good!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks! I'm a pretty big fan of that particular stencil, too.

      • Judi Bee profile image

        Judith Hancock 

        5 years ago from UK

        Nice idea - love the bird stencil too!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks! Me, too. As a grad student, I don't exactly have a home décor budget.

      • denisemai profile image

        Denise Mai 

        5 years ago from Idaho

        I'm always looking for cheap decorating ideas. This one is great!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you!

      • RhondaHumphreys1 profile image

        Rhonda Humphreys 

        5 years ago from Michigan

        These look great! Great documentation on how to make them too.

      • ideasinked profile image

        ideasinked 

        5 years ago from Mumbai, India.

        That's great! I'm soon gonna try your - Light Bulb Flower Vase :) Loved that idea...will give it a shot for this one too! :)

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks - I like them, too! I moved recently and brought them with me.

      • ideasinked profile image

        ideasinked 

        5 years ago from Mumbai, India.

        The color co-ordination with blue looks so good!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you! I'm really goad you enjoyed it and appreciate you took the time to let me know.

      • Au fait profile image

        C E Clark 

        5 years ago from North Texas

        This a great idea, easy, saves money at a time when many people don't have any extra, and best of all you can have unique one-of-a-kind art pieces on your walls. Great hub!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you! Glad you like it =)

      • Sharkye11 profile image

        Jayme Kinsey 

        5 years ago from Oklahoma

        This is a wonderful idea! I used to love stenciling fabric. Now I am inspired to pick up the hobby again. I like how thrifty this is. The price of store bought wall décor is outrageous for what you get! Thanks for the inspiration!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you =)

      • NiaG profile image

        NiaG 

        5 years ago from Louisville, KY

        Love this! I'm all about DIY.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        5 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you, thelyricwriter. Friends have suggested I try to sell them, I'm just not intersted in packing or shipping them! It is fun and easy to do. I agree, it would be a great way for kids to get invoked with decorating their own rooms!

      • thelyricwriter profile image

        Richard Ricky Hale 

        5 years ago from West Virginia

        Wow, what a great idea! I love that first picture, it is quite beautiful. Seems like it would be fun to make, perhaps with the kids. Also, it would seem to be profitable if one could make a few and sell them. Never knew they were so highly priced. Cool article. Voted up, useful, and awesome.

      • RunningDeer profile image

        RunningDeer 

        6 years ago from Iowa

        This is so cute. I feel like I keep saying this about all your DIYs, but it's true. You have some really great ideas. I agree about being over the poster decorating scheme. Thanks for the ideas!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you, sfshine! I've been thinking of making more for myself because I like them so much! Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

      • sfshine profile image

        sfshine 

        6 years ago from Michigan

        Very nice simple craft. Easy way to decorate your house. I always liked doing art work for the house and decorate it nicely.

      • TripleAMom profile image

        TripleAMom 

        6 years ago from Florida

        Another fun idea. I've really got to show these to my daughter.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you! Having seen your DIY hubs, I appreciate the complements. I use eBay all the time for miniatures I paint, but I have never sold an item on etsy - maybe I should check it out.

        Thanks again, especially for sharing.

      • tammyswallow profile image

        Tammy 

        6 years ago from North Carolina

        That is a very awesome, nice looking craft. I never thought about stenciling fabric. I love it. You could sell these easily on Etsy. Well done and sharing!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Awesome! Thank you so much! I really appreciate you stopping by and taking the time to read, comment, vote and share this hub.

      • janikon profile image

        Stu 

        6 years ago from Canada

        This is so interesting and looks SUPER fun. I'm going to save this and try it next week, when I've made a pitstop at the closest art store. Voted Up! Interesting. Useful and Shared.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Nice.

        I found the paint for 87 cents, so it shouldn't cost you much at all. I think it is fun to make great looking things for so little - and it always feels awesome when someone sees them in my house and complements them.

      • Om Paramapoonya profile image

        Om Paramapoonya 

        6 years ago

        Very cool! It seems pretty easy and won't be costly for me, since I already have most of the tools and materials. I only need to get some stencils and paint, then I'll be good to go!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thank you very much! It is stunning (to me) how much 'art' costs. I guess necessity really is the mother of invention.

      • Jools99 profile image

        Jools99 

        6 years ago from North-East UK

        Natashalh, yes, seeing the price of some art out there can certainly sharpen the mind into finding ways to create it yourself at a fraction of the cost. I thought your stencilled 'prints' looked very effective. Nice hub, voted up, etc.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Awesome! Thanks. I love these pieces to much (and some others I made that are not pictured) that I want to make even more...I just don't know where I would put them. I know stenciling can be a kid friendly project because I stenciled with my dad as a child.

      • Phil Plasma profile image

        Phil Plasma 

        6 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

        This is a terrific idea, I'll see about doing this project with my children. Voted up and useful.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Cool! Thanks and I'm glad you're enjoying.

      • BigSerious profile image

        Christen Roberts Comer 

        6 years ago from Harrisburg, PA

        Oh yeah. I'm liking your hubs! :D I can't wait to do this!!!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks! I love how it matches my things perfectly. I recently repainted my drawers blue, so I used basically the same color for my new wall panels.

      • celebritie profile image

        celebritie 

        6 years ago

        This wall art is great, so unique and different.

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks RTalloni and teaches! I appreciate the reds, comments and the share. I alsoloved knowing I'm not the only who thinks these look pretty nice. Thanks again!

      • teaches12345 profile image

        Dianna Mendez 

        6 years ago

        This does look beautiful and it is so simple to make. I can see so many options for this art work. What a lovely way to add a touch of art to any room. Thanks for sharing and voted up.

      • RTalloni profile image

        RTalloni 

        6 years ago from the short journey

        Linen is a fabulous fabric for a project like this. You came up with a great idea and your tutorial will be a help to anyone wanting to start and complete a similar project!

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks so much for reading and commenting, anusujith and oceansunsets! I love making things and it's so awesome to be ale to share my successes (and failures, like attempting to use thumbtacks) with the hubpages community.

      • oceansnsunsets profile image

        Paula 

        6 years ago from The Midwest, USA

        Great hub, I really like what you made! Thanks for sharing it.

      • anusujith profile image

        Anoop Aravind A 

        6 years ago from Nilambur, Kerala, India

        pretty cheap & beautiful. Good concept too!!! Only artists can imagine it. Keep on posting these kind of articles...

      • Natashalh profile imageAUTHOR

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        Thanks for your comments and suport! I'm glad both of you enjoyed reading and thanks for sharing, greatstuff.

      • greatstuff profile image

        Mazlan 

        6 years ago from Malaysia

        You always come out with some great ideas. Congrats on your creativity.Thanks for sharing.

      • tnderhrt23 profile image

        tnderhrt23 

        6 years ago

        Nifty idea that is economical and creative! Thank you!

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