DIY wall art : home state love

when we started planning to move abroad, I knew there was a short list of things from home that I just couldn't leave behind. this canvas is one of those things.

I was born in Texas and have spent the past 5 years on the east coast, but Michigan is the place I call home. I made this canvas last winter when we were living in New Jersey after seeing some similar ideas on Pinterest. I've had a lot of people ask me how I made it, so I figure it's time to share:

start with a blank canvas, a brush, and acrylic paint of your color choice. [if you wanted your state to be a color other than white, you could paint your whole canvas a solid color first before the next steps.]  if you want to do a state like California or Florida you may want to look for a rectangular canvas. I used a 12 x 12 inch canvas I had on hand and left out the Upper Peninsula to make it fit.

cut out an outline of your state and tape it to the canvas. I can't remember where I found my outline originally, but this website here has all the states and they look pre-sized for printing on 8.5 x 11 inch paper.

start painting around the edge of the outline. using outward strokes with the brush, away from the paper edge, will help keep your edges clean. peel off the tape and paper.

fill in the gaps in your outline from the tape. [it helps if you tape over straight edges or places with less detail.] then paint the rest of the canvas around your state.

you can also add a little heart or star [or whatever you like] over a special city. mine is on East Lansing - where Husband and I met and home of the finest university in the land. [that would be Michigan State University!] I think it would be cute to make a set of these to hang together - where you met + were married, places you have lived, or even special vacation spots.

every time I see "the mitten" hanging on the wall it makes me smile and think of home. I'm glad I was able to fit this piece of art into my suitcase when I moved, and I hope you all enjoyed learning how you can make your own!


  1. did you forget that the upper peninsula is part of michigan...?

  2. ^^^ Someone didn't read the post. She said she had to leave the peninsula out to fit the outline on the canvas.

  3. Ummmmm...then you change the size of your template. The upper peninsula is part of the state. You don't leave it out!!! Worst project ever. Maybe you should do a project with just the UP!

  4. no one cares about the upper peninsula. love this project!

    1. Yup...we hate when you trolls come up here to the most beautiful part of Michigan too. Stay out of the UP. Again, worst project ever.

    2. NOT Anonymous8/9/12, 10:50 AM

      if you dislike this project so much, why keep coming back? don't you have anything better to do in the UP than spend all day on the internet leaving rude anonymous comments?

      it's actually a great project idea, much better than spending $40 for something similar I saw on Etsy. yes, she left out half the state. she explained why. get over it.


  5. This is amazing! I will be doing this project for my new home!

  6. lololol everyone's so mad about the upper peninsula.

  7. Go State!! =]

  8. It's really a great project, i love this wall art making idea. many thanks for sharing.



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