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Art is one of those things that completely makes a room. It’s that last little layer that instantly transforms a house into a home. But there’s no question that the stuff can run you a pretty penny. Especially when you’re looking for a piece of this scale. But with a little know-how, and a handful of linen, you can instantly transform your room into a thing of great beauty. Have no fear, we’ll show you how!

Materials3 yards linen fabric
RIT fabric dye in teal, aqua, and denim blue
Plastic gloves & apron
Drying rack
Hot glue gun & glue sticks
Scissors
Plastic dropcloth

instructions

step-1Rip the linen into roughly 2” wide strips (they will be the length of the width of your fabric, about 45”) until all the linen is in strips.

step-2Separate the linen into groups of 10 strips. Set up an area to dye the fabric- lay down the dropcloth and set the drying rack on top. Presume the dye will splatter and drip even when you are being super careful, so dress accordingly. Ideally, use an outdoor space on a dry, warm day that’s not too windy.

step-3Fill a large metal or glass mixing bowl with hot, close-to-boiling water. Pour in a small amount of teal dye and mix with a metal spoon (or other non-wooden utensil, wood will stain). You will start with the lightest colors first and add more dye as you go.

step-4Put on your gloves & apron. Dip a group of 10 strips into the bowl and stir until the fabric is covered. Let soak a few seconds to a minute until you see a slight color. Pull out each strip one by one, running your fingers down the strip to remove any excess water, then hang on the drying rack. Make sure the strips hang flat on the rack so they don’t dry wrinkly.

step-5Add a bit more dye to the bowl and stir, then add the next batch of strips and repeat step 4. Continue until you have dyed all the strips, ending with the darkest batch of dye. Mix in a bit of the other colors of dye with each batch so you alternate the tone as well as the deepness of the color.

step-6Let the strips dry for 1 hour. Lay the canvas on a large table or the floor, and arrange the strips on the canvas. Each strip should overlap the one next to it by about half. Let the colors flow from light to dark, alternating tones as you go.

step-7Once you are happy with the composition, you can glue the strips in place. Make sure to glue strips around the side of the canvas as well as the front. We put a dot of glue under one edge of each strip to ensure they were spaced evenly, then went back and put a dot of glue under the center and other end of each strip.

step-8Trim the excess fabric from the canvas and glue down any loose ends. Hang the canvas and admire your handiwork!

Photography: Ruth Eileen Photography | Design & Styling: SMP Living

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Ruth Eileen Photography

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