I love how a few simple throw pillows can add a pop of color to a room or give it that needed touch of coziness. I thought a couple would freshen up our spare room and make it more homey. I saw watercolor style pillows to purchase online and choked at the $60 plus for EACH pillow! I can do better than that! I scoured Pinterest and discovered there are actually two different ways to achieve the look and I tried them both. Several times! It wasn’t as easy as it looked. Part of my problem was that I had a sea turtle in my head instead of just “splashes of color” which were the majority of pillows resulted from the techniques. Yes, I saw a pillow with a sea turtle and wanted one! And yes, I’m convinced it was mass produced and not created on a kitchen counter surrounded by bottles of craft paint. But I had fun, I ended up loving my finished pillows and thought I’d share…both techniques.
I am quite capable of sewing a pillow cover so pulled out a bolt of muslin and cut a few squares. You can use purchased pillow covers or even pillow cases. Make sure you put cardboard or plastic in between the layers, it does bleed through! Cover your work surface regardless of which method you use, they are both messy. A trash bag would be perfect!
First technique: Craft paint (I specifically looked for one that specified for use on fabric), fabric medium (you can mix it with the paint or put in on after the fact apparently. I ended up not using it! Water. Paint brushes or sponge daubers. If you want a design and can’t freehand, you’ll want a stencil. I cut mine (6 times, LOL) out of vinyl on my Cricut but you can use contact paper or use a purchased stencil.
Mix some water with your paint. The thinner the paint the lighter the color. Test it on some scrap fabric first, and start with a lighter color if you’re worried. You can always add more paint later. The thinner the paint, I discovered, the more it bleeds. Only a problem if you are doing a specific design! I worked from the outside in until I was happy with it! Take the stencil off and let dry!
The second techniques uses Sharpies, yes, those markers you already have, cotton swabs, and rubbing alcohol. And once again, I used a stencil.
After ruining several fabric squares with the watered down pain, I actually practiced this one first. HA! I
Go ahead, coloring is the new trendy adult hobby, color to your hearts content. Once you’re satisfied with your coloring job, wet your cotton swabs in alcohol and go to work blending your colors. I found it took some effort! Again, once you’re satisfied, take your stencil off and let dry! Voila!