Did you see my guest bedroom before and after post? Most people who saw the finished room, and who hadn’t been following along on this project over the last year, assumed that the wall was covered in wallpaper. But that’s actually a hand-drawn design.
I’ve done two hand-drawn wall mural designs in this house, and on both of them, I collaborated with my very artistic mom. The hardest part is coming up with the design, so we put our creativity together to come up with ideas and arrangements. But once it’s on paper and can be scanned and printed out onto a transparency, the rest is really very simple and relatively fast (as in, way faster than stenciling, at least for me). And even if you have to buy an overhead projector (mine was about $50 on Ebay), it’ll still cost hundreds of dollars less than wallpaper would cost.
So, good news! If you want this design on your wall, my mom and I have done the hard part for you. 😀 All you have to do is print it out on a transparency, get yourself an overhead projector, and then start tracing. And tracing. And tracing some more.
This design is meant to be really big on the wall, so the design has a horizontal repeat, but not a vertical repeat. Here’s a preview of the design…
You can click below for the downloadable version of your choice:
I emailed my design to the FedEx Office store (you can call your local store and get the email address for sending orders), and asked them to print it on an 8.5″ x 11″ transparency. And then I placed the overhead projector as far away from the wall as I could so that the design would be really big, and then I traced the design with a gold acrylic paint pen. Once I had the gold layer finished, I went back over the entire design with a white acrylic paint pen. I did the white layer very fast and intentionally messy so that the gold would still show.
If you want to see more details of this project, you can find more info here…
As I mentioned, the bedroom wall was the second hand-drawn mural in this house. Of all the projects that I did in the past, and that didn’t make the final cut, I think the one I still get the most comments about is the branch and bird mural that I did on the entryway wall a few years ago.
So for those of you who love that mural, I have that design for you also. This design has both a 1/2 drop horizontal repeat and a vertical repeat, and the printed version has plenty of overlap to help you position the transparency just right as you move across the wall. Here’s a preview.
You’ll notice that the design doesn’t include the birds or butterflies. I removed those since they don’t belong to me. But I simply went online and gathered several drawings of birds and butterflies that I then replicated on my wall after I had drawn all of the branches. I did leave some remnants of birds so that you can easily identify the repeats in the pattern. The blue wings are probably the most easily identifiable, so you can use those to get the repeat lined up properly on your wall.
You can download your version of choice here:
For this design, I used permanent black markers, but it took a while to find ones that would actually draw on a painted wall. Sharpie markers did not work well at all, but the Office Depot brand worked perfectly. Now having used both permanent markers and acrylic paint markers, I can say that they both work really well. But just keep in mind that if you use permanent markers on a wall, and then want to paint over it later, you’ll probably have to prime the wall with oil-based primer. I haven’t found any water-based primer that will cover permanent marker.
Anyway, if you want to see more details about the branches and birds wall mural project, you can click here…
I’m going to see about turning the bedroom wall design into a ready-to-use wallpaper available on Spoonflower. The problem is that the horizontal repeat of the design can only be 24 inches wide on their wallpaper, and that’s a considerably smaller design that what I have on the guest bedroom wall. It may end up looking too busy. Or it may look just right. I’ll give it a try and see.
In the meantime, give the hand-drawn mural a try! It really is quite easy. And of course, you can use these designs on other things as well, like a coffee table top, or a piece of artwork.
Just please don’t use these designs on anything that you sell without talking to me about it first. Pretty please. 🙂
And if you missed my guest bedroom before and after post, you can see it here…