Introduction: Mixed Media Canvas

About: I enjoy repurposing and restoring old furniture and making woodwork projects that are not seen every day. I make most of my projects using wood that is either, recycled,reclaimed and love to repurpose and rest…

Being a DIY and craft blogger and I am always trying new projects to keep my website fresh and interesting. Mixed media was my latest project. I made a mixed media canvas themed around my daughter's wedding. Elements from the wedding day were added to make the canvas more meaningful. Because I only do a few of each project I don't like to buy all the products needed for that style of craft. For this project, I made most of my embellishments, coloured pastes and shimmer sprays to keep my costs down.

Step 1: Seal Your Canvas

Paint the canvas with black Gesso first to prime the canvas. To cut down the waiting times, you can use a hairdryer to speed up the drying time.

Step 2: Add Texture Using Stencils

I made all my stencils using a Cricut machine and mylar film. Lay the stencil on the canvas. Using a spatula or credit card smooth some texture paste over the stencil. Remove the stencil straight away and wash the stencil before the texture paste dries. This does not need to be perfectly smooth. The imperfections are what make these mixed media canvases so interesting.

Step 3: Add Height to the Canvas

This style of mixed media canvas is more eye-catching if you add some height. To do this, you can buy the embellishment packs or make them using the Cricut machine. To make them, find a design you like and duplicate it a few times and cut them using the Cricut. Glue all the layers together with craft glue. This is the same process I followed to make most of my embellishments.

Step 4: Add More Textures to the Canvas

Using items that you have around the house to create different textures and elements to the canvas. I wrapped some string around the board and pulled it together using a wood stud from my workshop. The corrugated cardboard was packing from some crockery I bought.

Step 5: ​Find Embellishments

Over the years I have ordered items from China and other places and when they arrive they were totally unsuitable usually too small. They came handy for this project. If you don't have the charms they are reasonably cheap on Amazon. I went around the house and my workshop with my box collecting lots of elements to use. If you have a good look at the canvas you will see a lot of the embellishments are everyday items. Keys, screws, hinges, thumbtacks, nameplates, broken jewellery and the runs down the top right and sides are hot glue from a glue gun. The flowers were artificial flowers from around my house they all sacrificed a flower to the canvas.

Step 6: Plan Your Layout

Plan where you want to place all the embellishment before you glue them in place. I moved mine around so many times before I was happy, it was ridiculous. Then take a photo so you know where everything goes when glueing.

Step 7: Paint Your Embellishments

Remove all the embellishments and paint them all with black Gesso. It is easier to paint them first. Once it is all glued down it is hard to get into all the nooks and crannies. Start glueing all the embellishment onto the canvas with a quick drying glue like E6000.

Step 8: Adding Some Colour

I got so carried away I forgot to take a photo of this stage so here is a fake one (The angel) ha ha. Using your finger and the coloured wax paste. Dip your finger in the paste and run it across the surface. Not filling the nooks and crannies, this gives the aged effect. You can also use acrylic paints to add some colour. I did buy 2 coloured wax paste and 2 shimmer sprays but found it was not enough colour. I did not want to wait for delivery so I made my own wax pastes and shimmer sprays. Mine worked just as good as the stored bought products. Just add splashes of colour randomly. Finally, add some shimmer spray to make the canvas shimmer. This does not show up very well in the photos but it is a stunning effect. Check out this great project How to make your chalk paint look metallic.

Step 9: Materials and Tool Needed

  • texture paste
  • Gesso
  • Shimmer spray
  • coloured wax pastes
  • canvas
  • stencil
  • cardstock
  • charms
  • glue
  • embellishments
  • acrylic paints