Saturday, October 24, 2015

Leaf Stencil Wall Art: Date Night and Family Outings a Couple Times Over

Well, we are settled into our new home in Western Pennsylvania. I never pictured myself living here, growing up on the west coast and all, but sometimes life takes us places we never expected. We are getting over the slight culture shock and the extreme driving shock and I am now starting to finish projects again.

We have actually been working on a number of things in the past few months, but this post is just about the first one I have actually completed. You can look forward to my posts about our new bed, my version of the Ikea stool learning tower, an ottoman, Halloween costumes, and probably a few others I have forgotten.

This wall art was inspired by this photo that has been floating around Pinterest. There weren't any written instructions, so I had to infer the steps from the pictures (and google "KLEJ") but my husband and I did this project together and called it date night with a cup of cider or hot cocoa to wrap up a step. It took us a few date nights--which was perfect--and is now hanging on the wall as a reminder of some good time together.


Date night #1 consisted of mixing colors (something Patrick always gets really excited about) for our base coats. We kept our base coats kind of streaky by not mixing the paint all the way for variation. We didn't bother to paint the sides of the canvas.

Our family outing involved collecting branches on the way to the park. David had his own special collection of leaves. Once we got home, we put them under some boards and several cans of paint that were just sitting in the garage when we moved in to press them flat. We left them for 3 days.

I used the spray adhesive during the day to attach paper over the parts we had painted and sprayed the sides. This is not a necessary step, but I wanted to not have to worry about side coverage while spraying with the leaves. Truthfully, I also wanted to see what the spray paint we had chosen would look like on the canvas in the room and how well the easy-tack would work. I got a bit impatient.

Date night # 2 consisted of adhering the leaves in the desired pattern by coating the back side of the leaves with the repositionable adhesive as per product instructions and placing them on the canvas. We then spray painted over the top. The sticks and stems did not stay down very well, but if I had been going for perfect, I would have used stencils in the first place. I kind of like the softer look of the faded stems. We very carefully removed the leaves while the paint was still wet.

We are quite happy with the results. It was an easy project to do together and made a pretty good date activity. It could also be fun to do with older children.

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