Wednesday, November 30, 2016


Don't ask why but Kevin and I watched the horror movie Annabelle just before bed last night. I spent most of the night tossing and turning thinking some murderer was going to bust into our bedroom with a kitchen knife. Just as I was closing my eyes my 125lb German Shepherd-Rottweiler let out 3 extremely deep barks and just stared into the hallway from the bedside. I FREAKED. Turns out he heard an airplane (what a baby) but that's about the last of the horror movies for me. I think it's time to spread some holiday cheer instead.


To the Reindeer Canvas...

Our mantel has been missing something since I first put up our Christmas decorations earlier this month. We have an outlet and cable connection above the fireplace (as if to mount a TV and avoid cords being seen), but instead we decided to mount the TV on another wall and put our second TV on a stand below the first for dual viewing. I mean, what else are you supposed to do when the Steelers and Panthers play at the same time? 

Needless to say, I had to come up with something that would look festive but also cover up that ugly outlet. 

A few months ago I purchased a 5-pack of 16" x 20" canvases from Michael's (only $10 after a 50% off coupon!) and thought this might be the perfect opportunity to use canvas 3 of 5. In a few easy steps, you can make this DIY Reindeer Head Canvas too! 

You might also like to see what I did with Canvas #1

Copy the Reindeer head image into Microsoft Excel. It's one of the only programs that let's you print in a tiled format (ie: prints the image on multiple sheets) so you can piece it together like a puzzle for the end result. You're welcome to use the image above or you can search for your own on Google.

Then adjust the size/layout. Since my canvas was 16" x 20" I made my Reindeer head image ~13" x 16" (keeping the proportions locked).

Optional: You can have your image printed at Staples for ~$2 on one sheet of paper instead but I'm frugal and used my printer at work. Don't tell!

Gather your materials; Canvas, Reindeer head image, paintbrush(es), paint, plate or cup for paint, scissors (or paper cutter), tape and pencil.

Trim off the borders of your 8.5" x 11" sheets of paper so that the edge of the paper is now even with the start of the image. I used a Fiskars SureCut Scrapbook Paper Trimmer, but you could just as easily use standard scissors.

Discard the excess border and arrange your sheets so it makes one complete image.

Tape your image pieces together, making sure you do not put tape anywhere on the outline of the Reindeer (both the front and back). You're going to be tracing over the outline and the tape will interfere.

On the back of the image with your pencil, shade heavily over the outline of your image. You want to make sure the entire outline is covered, including antlers and empty spaces between.  

Flip your image back over so the side you just shaded is against the canvas. Center your Reindeer and secure to the canvas with tape. 

Important: I place a large, hard book under the canvas before tracing. If you don't put a hard surface under the canvas, you may end up pressing too hard and tearing it since the frame makes it raised off whatever surface you are working on.

With pressure, trace over the entire outline of your Reindeer with your pencil. Then remove your printed Reindeer image to reveal it on the canvas. 

Begin painting your Reindeer in the color of your choice. I used craft smart Holiday Red, but green, gold or silver would all turn out well for the Holidays. It might help to use a smaller paintbrush for the antlers if you are new to painting with foam brushes like I am. I scooped a cheap multi-pack from the Dollar Store.

Allow to air dry overnight and display in your desired location!




1 16" x 20" Canvas
Printed Reindeer Head
#2 Pencil 
Foam Paintbrush + Smaller Paintbrush
Paper Plate or Disposable Cup
craft smart Metallic Paint in Holiday Red


Copy your Reindeer head image into Microsoft Excel and adjust the size/layout. Since my canvas was 16" x 20" I made my Reindeer head image 13" x 16". 

Print out your Reindeer onto regular computer paper (I used 8 1/2" x 11"). Your image will print in a tiled format (6 pages) so you will need to trim your pages and piece the image together as if putting together a puzzle. Tap the pieces of paper together to complete the full image.

Then, position the image (printed side up) onto your canvas to ensure the whole image will fit and using your #2 pencil, shade over the Reindeer head outline on the backside of the computer paper. 

Flip your computer paper back over so that the printed side is up and gently place your image as you want it to appear on your canvas. Optional: Tape it onto the canvas to secure.

Pushing hard, start tracing over the Reindeer head outline using your pencil. Once you've traced the whole thing, remove the printer paper to reveal your image in pencil on the canvas. 

Begin filling in your image with the Holiday Red craft smart paint and the foam brush. Apply two coats or more if you feel necessary.

Allow to completely dry overnight and display in desired location. 


Total Project Cost: ~$4
$10 for all 5 canvases (regularly $19.99, but with 50% off coupon at Michaels), $0.79 Paint, $0.49 Foam Paintbrush


My Materials

Paint; Craftsmart │ Foam Brush; ArtMinds │ Canvas; Artist Loft 


I'm obsessed with how our mantel turned out with this canvas addition! It not only covers up those ugly outlets, but it really pulls the whole room together too. If you make this, I'd love to see how they turned out! Happy crafting!