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painter’s canvas picnic blanket

Painted Canvas Picnic Blanket

Finding pretty picnic blankets is always a challenge for me. For whatever reason, picnic season tends to bring out the bright cheesy fabrics in many of my favorite brands. Instead of buying one I don’t love, I prefer to invest 30 minutes and make one I do love!

Last year’s no-sew picnic blanket was fun to make. This season we made a pretty pink painted stripe version to use for our first party of summer and it worked splendid.

Painter's Canvas Picnic Blanket

Painter's Canvas Picnic Blanket

To make the painted canvas picnic blanket, we started with a simple canvas drop cloth. If you purchase the type with non-drip coating on the back, it will provide a water resistant barrier which is great for laying the canvas down on grass. You’ll also need fabric paint and a small house paint roller.

Painter's Canvas Picnic Blanket

Painter's Canvas Picnic Blanket

Before beginning to paint – bleach the canvas in the washer and dry thoroughly, for a surface that the paint will stick easily to.

Next measure out the stripe lines – I loved the look of three lines in differing hues, but you could stripe all the way down the canvas if desired. Big stripes! Little stripes! Use this tutorial to make a blanket that you will love getting out again and again this summer.

Gently measure out the paint lines with pencil.

Next begin painting. Squirt the fabric paint into a small paint tray and roll right on to the cloth. Paint multiple coats for a completed “perfect” line look, or allow the brush to run naturally to create interesting, abstract lines. Erase the pencil marks afterwards, or leave them for a sketched in paint look.

Painter's Painted Picnic Blanket

One thing I love about this picnic blanket is that it is big enough to fit an entire party! If you’re planning a summer party, the blankets are a fun way to seat guests – make them in a couple different shades and set them around the yard. Instant picnic party perfection.

Grab your friends and head out to enjoy a lazy afternoon under the trees, or roll this blanket up for a night of stargazing. More to come on our summer stargazing party tomorrow!

(Photography by Jocelyn Noel)


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  1. Hi, wondering how you found out about bleaching the canvas first so the paint will stick. Have you washed the picnic blanket yet? Thanks Pat

    • Pat, Hi! We bleached it first, mostly because we were nervous about any chemicals that might have been present on the fabric (since it is meant for paint pick up).

      To paint it we used fabric paint – which holds up great in the wash. I’ve used it before on tablecloths and other projects that have always come through the washer perfectly. Hope that helps!

  2. I LOVE this idea and am so glad I found it! I am having the hardest time finding cute picnic blankets. How did you get the stars on the blanket?

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