This is a project we did for The Wave Magazine. We love decorating the deck for summer. We spend lots of time outdoors grilling and just enjoying the weather, so we decided to dress up our outdoor space with a painted outdoor rug.
We started with a big piece of cotton canvas and we “hemmed” it with glue. Then we painted the outdoor rug with stencils. And finally we weatherproofed it with a clear coat of polyurethane. Here’s a step-by-step how-to along with all the tools and materials you’ll need to make your own.
How To Make Your Own Painted Outdoor Rug
Heavy-duty 10-ounce primed cotton canvas, 40″x52″ (If you can’t find primed canvas, buy regular canvas and prime it yourself with 2 coats of gesso or white latex primer.)
Cadmium Yellow Light acrylic paint
Cadmium Red Medium acrylic paint
Turquoise Green acrylic paint
Ultramarine Blue acrylic paint
Water-based clear polyurethane, 1-pint can
Elmer’s carpenter glue
Synthetic bristle paintbrush, 2″ wide
Foam stenciling sponge or spouncer, 1.25″
(A spouncer is a sponge paintbrush that has a round, flat surface. It is made for stenciling.)
2″ Floral Flourishes Border
7″ Balmoral Border
7″ Acanthus Border
Blue masking tape
1. Paint the canvas yellow and let dry. Use the blue masking tape to mask off the border. Paint the border area red-orange. Tape each stencil down to create a decorative pattern. Paint through the stencil with spouncer. Dab small amounts of paint in the open spaces of the stencil. The hardest part of stenciling is keeping the paint from seeping under the stencil and blurring the design. Dry paint, as opposed to wet, runny paint helps. Also, dabbing straight down helps. We recommend washing each stencil between applications. We just use soap and water.
2. Once the paint has dried, give the canvas a coat of clear polyurethane to seal it. We recommend using a high quality bristle paintbrush to apply the clear coat. Allow the clear polyurethane to dry for at least 2 hours. Turn the outdoor rug over and seal the underside as well. Let the canvas dry for at least 2 more hours.
3. To hem your painted outdoor rug, turn the cloth face down. Start at the corner and measure 12 inches up each side and mark with the chalk. Use the chalk to draw a diagonal line from one chalk mark to the other. Cut along the chalk line to cut the corners off. Repeat to cut all four corners. Fold each side over 6 inches and crease the cloth. Glue the edge down with the carpenter’s glue. Let the glue set for 30 minutes. Finally, place your new painted outdoor rug on your patio, put your feet up, and enjoy your artistry!
What projects do you have planned for your outdoor space? We are hoping to do some more mosaics and birdhouses. Let us know what outdoor projects you’d like to see in the comments!
Jennifer & Kitty
We love getting pinned!
Want to see more outdoor projects?