Hello! My name is Jessica from The Vanderveen House. I blog about home renovations, DIY projects, furniture makeovers, and whatever else I’m working on at the moment.
Today I’m going to show you how to make watercolor tropical art using fabric and watercolor fabric paints. This is such an easy project, and can be used in so many different ways to create all kinds of art and home decor items!
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- Fabric (I used outdoor fabric, but you can choose whatever you like)
- Tropical pictures
- Dye-na-flow watercolor fabric paints (cranberry red, chartreuse, and turquoise)
- Jacquard water-based resist
- Squeeze bottle applicator
- Paint brushes
- Spray bottle
Step 1: Trace Your Pictures Onto Fabric Using The Resist
Find some pictures you would like to use for your tropical wall art. I chose to use a pineapple, a flamingo, and a tropical leaf. If you are artistic at all, you can draw these yourself. There’s also a lot of clip-art that you can find online to match your own decor.
Next cut your fabric. I cut my fabric to be about 12″ by 12″ so they would fit within an 8″ by 10″ frame. Then fill up your applicator squeeze bottle with some of the water-based resist. I added just a tiny drop of water to thin out the resist. Trace out your design and fill in any area that you don’t want the watercolor paints to go.
Let the resist dry for an hour or two, then you’re ready to paint!
Step 2: Time to Use Your Watercolor Fabric Paints
Next you can use the dye-na-flow watercolor fabric paints to fill in your tropical art. For the three of these, I used chartreuse, cranberry red, and teal. These colors all work so well together and they happen to be my favorite colors. You can mix these paints with water to thin them out, or use them straight to give a rich color.
You can also spray the fabric before-hand with water to spread the paints out even more. I chose not to use too much water with this type of fabric because the paint tends to spread unpredictably.
Step 3: Set Paint And Rinse Out Resist
You can set the paint using a warm iron (not hot, especially with outdoor fabric. It will melt.)
Then rinse out the resist using warm water.
After the fabric dried again, I went back in with a very small paint brush to add some more detail and shading to each piece.
Step 4: Frame and Hang!
I put my tropical art in white 8″ by 10″ frames and hung them up as part of a gallery. I think they’re very bright, fun, and summery. What do you think? Is this a project you would try? It is so easy and can be used in so many different ways!
You can easily make these yourself, but if you want some quick and easy artwork you can head over to The Vanderveen House Etsy shop. I have these tropical watercolor pieces available as individual printable downloads, or as a set of three.
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