When we moved into our new house, one of the first projects that we undertook was to put together a nursery for our first baby that would be arriving in only a few months. We decided to go forest theme. The biggest part of this was a large wall mural that was composed of tree silhouettes. Here is a quick tutorial on how we made it.
Step 1: Materials
Here are the materials that you need for this project:
Paint: You will need three colors of paint. You need a white paint, a light colored paint and a dark colored paint
Primer: I prefer to use a separate primer rather than using the paint and primer in one combination.
Brushes: You will need a variety of brushes (and probably rollers). You will do most of the painting with regular brushes. But you will also need an old beat up nasty brush for rough stippling.
Painter's Tape: I highly recommend using FrogTape for this project. It is the best at blocking paint and preventing it from seeping under the edges. You can also use some regular painter's tape to help cut cost.
Step 2: Select Your Colors
We decided to go with the basic color theme from the book "The Giving Tree." So we have a pure white, a light green and a dark green.
Step 3: Apply Primer
In most cases you will want to apply a full coat of primer to the walls before painting. This was especially true for our house because it was previously owned by a heavy smoker.
Step 4: Pencil a Rough Outline of the Forest on the Wall
Using a pencil, lightly sketch the outline of the forest onto the wall.
Step 5: Paint the Trees White
All of the trees will need a base coat of white. You don't have to paint the entire wall white. You can just paint the areas where the trees will be. But you do want to paint over the lines. This will will both cover up the pencil marks and help to ensure that everything is covered. Let the paint completely dry before going to the next step.
Step 6: Apply the Tape Where the Trees Will Be
Now you need to put tape over every place where the trees will be. Think of it as drawing the trees with tape. You want to use Frog Tape at all of the edges to help keep them clean. But the insides of the trees can be regular painter's tape if you want to save some money.
To do this, cover the insides of the trees with painter's tape first. Then use Frog Tape to cover the outer edges. Be sure to firmly press down on the tape so that it sticks tightly to the wall. You don't want the next layer of paint to seep in.
Step 7: Apply the Second Coat of Paint
Now you need to apply the light green paint over the entire wall. Go ahead and paint over the taped areas. Let this coat completely dry before going on to the next step.
Optional Step: If you don't have a good sealing tape like Frog Tape, you can still get a clean line by first painting over the edges of the tape with the same white paint that you used for the base coat. If there are any gaps, the white paint will fill them in and seal them. Then when applying later coats, the colored paint won't be able to seep in.
Step 8: Apply Stippling to Create a Color Gradient
To give the effect of leaves in the trees, we applied spots of dark green paint. We used stippling to create a rough color gradient that transitions from light green at the bottom to dark green at the top.
We wanted the spots to be really rough and random. So we used the oldest and most beat up brush that we had.
Step 9: Remove the Tape
Now comes the fun part, peeling off the tape. Slowly and carefully remove the tape. If you do it too quickly, you might rip off chucks of paint.
If all went well, there should be a clean and crisp outline of your trees when you are done.
Step 10: Enjoy Your New Wall Mural
Now you have a beautiful wall mural. Sit back and appreciate all your hard work. Then get back to work decorating and adding accessories.
We use the same color paint on many of the other decorations around the room. We repainted a clock face to match. We painted some branches white to use as a mobile. We also colored the trim of the lamp cover and the backs of the book shelves.