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Today’s lesson is all about being creative and cheap. A great way to spruce up a room and not spend a lot of money is to put down a rug. They can really add a lot to a room. Now, I get tired of seeing the same designs on rugs sold at my local Target, Wal-Mart, and Bed, Bath & Beyond. They all just look the same to me. Everything is either stripes or circles in various brown and beige or huge designs in neon pink and green. None of that screams me.

So why not make my own? I can choose the type of rug, colors and designs I want to have. It makes searching a whole lot easier and the price is just right. Since it’s my first time, I wanted to start with an easy rug to paint. I perused my local stores and found a small sisal rug that would work perfectly.

Sisal Rug

It’s a good starting point rug. It’s nice and flat, so learning how to put paint on it shouldn’t be too difficult.


I’ve learned fabric paint is the best way to go with rugs, because it won’t wash off and it shouldn’t crack after drying. I decided to use craft paint and add a fabric medium found at my handy dandy Mom’s house. Thanks Mommy!

Craft Paint

It’s fine to use different brands. It’s more important to get the colors you like!
Fabric Medium

Fabric Medium

The directions on the back say to use a 2:1 ration. Two parts paint to one part medium. I basically just started pouring and made sure I used more paint than medium. It seemed to work well.

Be Creative

I’ve seen some wonderful designs that used painter’s tape to map it out. It’s an easy way to create a fun striped pattern and not mess it up. But I’ve always been more of a free-hand kinda girl. I did find a design to use as an inspiration. I don’t like to exactly copy designs, because I feel like I’m cheating. Sometimes the only way to find your creative bone is just to try to make a design your own, with small changes.

The Design

For Christmas I got these adorable hand towels for my kitchen. I wish I knew where they came from, but Grandma forgot. I love this flower towel and figured that would be an easy pattern to start with.

Flower Design

Pretty Towel!

How To

I used brushes with stiff bristles so I could dab the paint into the rug fabric. Brush strokes don’t really work, because it will take you six years to get enough paint down. You have to use quite a bit of paint but I ended up with leftover in the mini bottles.

I tried to free-hand but the design was getting pretty off-centered. So I painted small circles the rest of the way down the rug to map out my flowers.

Final Product

Painted Rug

Lot's of flowers!

 All in all, it was a simple project that only took about two hours to complete (not counting shopping time) and the cost was under $25. It probably would’ve gone over, but I was able to borrow the brushes and medium from my Mom.

I wasn’t thrilled with the final rug, but I was happy with my first try. I wish I could’ve found a lighter rug to start with. I think for the next one, I’ll use the same rug but do larger flowers (maybe peonies) in white. Stay tuned!

P.S. Here are some bloggers who inspired me and did it better!


DIY Maven via Curbly