Altered Canvas Art

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Article Courtesy; by Tiffany Roberts

A non-scrapbooking friend once asked me, "Honestly though, how many scrapbooks can one person have?" My answer is "Never enough!" However, it got me thinking of new ways to use my supplies to create original, handmade art pieces for myself and others.

Altered canvas projects have been quite popular for a little while now, and I wanted to try my hand at creating a few different projects. I hope that you'll like the two items I've made, and that they inspire you to pick up a few blank canvases the next time you're at your local artist supply store.

Memories Calendar



This is a piece I made for my daughter's bedroom. Instead of generic acrylic paint, I chose a tougher, high-gloss variety to paint the canvas with. I'm hoping this makes the canvas a little stiffer and more durable since it will be used in a young girl's bedroom.

The calendar pages were printed off my computer, cut down, and attached to the backdrop with small bulldog clips from Making Memories. The clips are attached to the canvas with extra long prong brads. You could sew them on or use hot glue instead.

All of the accent pieces - such as the title, tag-board key, and mini clipboard are attached to this canvas with hot glue.

Something like this can be altered in several ways to make custom gifts in any theme imaginable. You can use Mod Podge Sealer and attach patterned papers or photos to the background. You could create a masculine project by using twine or cording instead of ribbons and by painting your background in a gender-neutral color. Instead of the clipboard why not try creating a pocket to hold pens, or a hook to hold keys? There are so many fun options!

LOVE Wall Grouping



  • canvases - Winsor & Newton
  • acrylic paint - Chroma Acrylics Inc.
  • gold paint dauber - Adirondack Metallics
  • wood letters - unknown
  • patterned papers - Chatterbox, Great Room Series
  • self-adhesive paper lace - Creative Imaginations
  • ribbon - unknown
  • buttons - Autumn Leaves
  • skeleton leaves - Gold Leaf Co.
  • rub-on - BasicGrey
  • felt flowers - K& Company
  • chipboard sayings - K& Company

This is a sweet little project I've made to give my mother for her birthday. I have four daughters, so choosing a four-letter word like LOVE worked perfectly. A holiday version of this project could say NOEL, for example.

I created my canvases to be hung in a grid-like pattern. However, you could attach ribbons to the tops and bottoms of each piece and they could hang in a long vertical or horizontal row as well.

Each canvas is 6" x 6", painted, and covered with a 5" x 5" piece of patterned paper. The edges are painted again in a metallic gold, and then photos and accent pieces were layered onto the canvas. The final step was painting and hot gluing the wooden LOVE letters onto the canvases.

Here are several other ideas for working with canvases:

  • Flat canvases can be used as covers for mini albums when holes are drilled into the top edges. Bind with metal rings, ribbon, or bookbinding cloth.
  • Make a custom key holder so family members can hang their keys on hooks under their own photos.
  • Cover four canvases with paint, photos, and embellishments. Then use a fifth as the bottom of a box, and the four decorated pieces as the sides. Attach it all together with hot glue and hide seams with ribbons. This would make a cute gift box for the holidays.
  • Create a cute and funky sign for your front door: holiday themed, your name or house number, or something for all seasons such as "Please Remove Your Shoes."
  • Create a menu holder to sit on your buffet table for your next party.
  • Use small hinges to attach several canvases together. Decorate and embellish and place on your fireplace mantle.
  • Decorate a child's room by painting a small canvas with each letter of the child's name.
  • Attach textural wallpaper to canvases, paint and distress to create vintage-looking faux tin tiles.

Please check out the gallery at for more exciting ways to use canvases and your Scrapbooking supplies to craft one of a kind home décor items and gifts. I know you'll be inspired by the fabulous projects you'll find there.


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