Learn how to design and paint your own custom wall art panels to compliment your decor and fit your style. Here’s what you need and how to do it.
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Have you seen those pretty painted or printed wall art panels?
Breaking up a single image or design over several different pieces is a fascinating way to display art on your walls.
There’s plenty of buying options out there, but let’s get real…a true DIY-er gets that itch to try something like this themselves.
It’s so satisfying to look at a piece and know it was your own work. Plus, the process itself is not only fun but eliminates any rules.
Make what you want, how you want, and in what expression you want!
Just explore and make.
And you probably already know that the more you stretch those creative muscles, the more ideas you give your creativity room to birth.
So instead of searching out some wall art panels that you might like, here’s how to make them yourself with just a few supplies and plenty of creative freedom.
- unfinished wood panels
- acrylic craft paints (I used houser light green, desert cactus, woodland green, slate grey, baby pink, and snow white)
- stencils of your choice
- stencil brushes
- lint-free cloth
How to Make Wall Art Panels with Stencils
I used four panels, but you can use as few or as many as you want.
For the base, I used a paint stain technique to get a sheer finish that lets the grain shine through.
Just add a little paint to a lint-free cloth and wipe it over the surface, just as you would with stain.
I like to buff it to a dry finish, which is also nice if you don’t want to sit around and watch paint dry! 🙂
This is a simple technique and I think it actually makes the grain show up better than on the bare wood alone.
I wanted a neutral, farmhouse look for this project, so all the better to show off that gorgeous wood grain.
Adding a Stencil
Buy this stencil on Etsy.
I had whispy botanicals in mind for this project and designed a wreath motif stencil with stems and leaves.
You can go almost anywhere you want with a stencil design, and choose one to fit the theme and style you want.
I recommend choosing a primary stencil that is large enough to cover several of your panels at once. You don’t have to center it like I did, but do try to cover more that one panel.
A common approach to using wall art panels is to use a design over more than one piece. Then, leaving a small gap between the pieces when you hang them.
After lining up the panels, choose the placement of your stencil and tape it in place.
Get all the stencil tips: Stencil Art: How to Get a Flawless Transfer Every Time.
You can use the same stencil to add accent transfers to other areas of the panels, and even stencil a portion of a design on the edge so that you only stencil some of it. It’s a great look that adds interest to your project.
And you can add different stencils too. There are plenty of options, so don’t forget…use your imagination and enjoy the process of creating your very own unique wall art!
Now it’s time to choose paint, that incredible tool that practically works magic.
I used three shades of green:
houser light green for the wispiest stems,
desert cactus for the thicker vines,
and woodland green for the thick, leafy stems.
Bits of washi tape work well to mask off close areas you don’t want to color mix.
Buy this stencil on Etsy.
I designed a second stencil to accent the larger blank areas – the Berry Stem stencil.
Pink berries added a soft pop of color.
Finally, I transferred the Live Creatively stencil from the canvas tote bag project to the top and bottom of the design,
and accented the words with a bit of slate grey.
Adding a second color is a great way to add dimension and character to an otherwise flat paint color.
The finished project: 4 panels, one design, and a soft and subtle wall decor project that’s like no other!
These hang with a bit of space between them, but with a definite connection of design.
Wall art panels are a creative way to use stencils, but they’re far from the only way!
Wall Art Panels Inspiration
Stencil projects are one of my favorites, so when I discovered Get Started Stenciling in my Bluprint account, I just had to check it out. I wanted to see if there were some fresh ideas for working with stencils that I could try.
I was not disappointed!
Starting with instructions for making my own stencils with just a ruler, marker, craft knife, and acetate sheets, I was hooked.
And I thought the tip for repairing cutting mishaps was absolutely genius! No need to toss the whole stencil and make a new one with this simple trick.
Plus, I discovered a new-to-me application tool that works even better than stencil brushes for some projects.
But that was only the introduction!
Through each of the lessons, I explored new projects using paper, canvases, apparel, leather, wood, concrete, glass, and walls. In fact, this project was inspired by the stenciling on wood lesson.
I’ve got more stencil art projects from this class in the works, so be sure to watch the newsletter for details.
Where to Find It
If you’re the impatient type and want to jump right in yourself, I highly encourage you to check out Bluprint.
With over 1,300 classes in more than 20 categories, stencil art is just the tip of the iceberg.
With Bluprint, you can stream any class you want, any time you want, and as many times as you want – all with a single subscription.
Classes are streamable on all of your devices and come with material lists, a comment area where you can ask questions, bookmark tabs so you can make notes at any time within the class to refer to later, and an area to share photos of your projects if you want.
There’s also extra perks to your subscription beyond just access to amazing classes though.
When you choose an annual subscription, you’ll get 12 own-forever classes via 3 redeemable coupons each quarter. Add the classes you choose to your library, and they’re yours to keep forever, even if you cancel your subscription in the future.
Plus, annual subscribers enjoy FREE U.S. shipping on kits and supplies purchased for the entire year – regardless of how small or large the order is.
If an annual subscription isn’t for you, there’s a convenient monthly option as well. For just $7.99 per month, you can enjoy the same access to all of the Bluprint library and receive 1 own-forever class to add to your library.
As of March 6, 2019, subscription members receive an additional 15% off already discounted kits and supplies from the Bluprint shop, making subscriptions even better!
Subscribers also get access to exclusive patterns, new original series, and live events.
If you’re like me and find so much about Bluprint that you enjoy and want to share, you can also gift subscriptions. For as little as $22.99, you can gift a friend with 3 months of Bluprint access. Six month and annual subscriptions are also available.
With so many perks to being a Bluprint subscriber, you can’t go wrong by giving it a try.
Bluprint is backed by a 30-day Happiness Guarantee. If you’re not completely satisfied with your membership, simply contact support within 30 days for a refund.
Visit Bluprint and start exploring and making today!