When paint isn’t an option and the idea of wallpapering anything stresses you out, it’s time to turn to lower-lift ways to zhoozh up your rental apartment’s walls. A gallery wall does the trick, but those looking for a little more warmth and texture may want to opt for a woven hanging. Here’s the problem: Macramé and other knit hangings can often run quite pricey—and for those not living in a rental apartment by choice, it’s not the most budget-friendly wall update to make.
Luckily, you can DIY your own wall hanging; no loom (or extensive crafting experience) necessary. In her newest book, The Colourist, Annie Sloan includes a project from contributor Marysia Szymañska that’s all sorts of eye-catching: Abstract shapes, vibrant colors, and fringe detailing make for the ultimate alternative to traditional artwork.
“There is no denying that we love the Memphis Group style,” says Szymañska. “The work of Joan Miró was our inspiration. The tapestry will make your home enriched with an eclectic hodgepodge—by choosing colors, you can easily adjust it to suit your interior color.”
Once you have your palette picked (Szymañska opted for warm tones, but this would be the perfect chance to try out a slightly more unusual color combination, like orange and blue), you’re ready to start the DIY. Here’s how to make your very own color-saturated tapestry.
- 1 cotton table mat in a natural color
- Cotton yarn in a natural color
- 1 Annie Sloan With Charleston: Decorative Paint Set in Tilton (or the paint of your choosing)
- Stiff brushes of various thickness
- A pencil
- A needle with a large eye
- A wire trouser hanger
Step 1: Sketch your design on the mat using a pencil. The design needs to go to the edge of the mat—the fringes will be a continuation of the design.
Step 2: Using the cotton yarn, add two fringes with the help of a needle to the side and bottom of the mat (one about 11.81 inches long, the other about 3.15 inches) and six tied tassels to the bottom, each just under an inch.
To create tassels, wrap yarn around four fingers about 20 times. Take the yarn off your fingers carefully. Cut two pieces of yarn. Thread one through the loop of your bundle to be used to attach the tassel to your mat, and use the second piece to wrap and tie around the bundle close to the top. Trim the tassels to length.
Step 3: Using your first paint color, fill the first shape at the bottom of the mat so that it meets the longer 11.81-inch fringe. Paint on the fringe to create an ombré effect.
Step 4:. Using your second color, start to fill in the long shape that snakes across the middle of the mat.
Step 5: Using a mix of those first two colors (Szymañska used the palette’s Tilton and Burgundy), paint in the shape that blends into the 3.15-inch curved fringe on the side of the mat.
Step 6: Paint small splotchy dots on the mat with your third color. Then, using either a mix of two colors or a fourth color, fill in one of the empty shapes. Repeat this step with a new, darker color for the final shape that extends to the tassels at the bottom of the mat.
Step 7: Finally, to add lightness to your composition, draw a contour line using one of the lighter shades in your palette. Szymañska used the palette’s Tilton, here.
Step 8: Display your art on a wire trouser hanger; no nails required. Voila!
See more easy DIYs to try next weekend:
How to DIY a French Tufted Mattress
Try This 5-Minute Hack to Disguise an Unsightly TV
Don’t Toss It: 7 Creative Ways to Use Leftover Fabric