I was trying to find a piece of art for above my bed in my re-vamped Master Bedroom and was looking for a long and skinny piece, approximately 12×36. Of course being the bargain shopper that I am, I didn’t want to spend to much money. Large canvas art can be very expensive.
I read on some other blogs that you can make your own canvas prints on the cheap by getting color images printed at Staples for not much money. Only around $6! They are called Engineered Prints and are supposed to be for blueprints and such. Then you can mount them on foam board for really cheap. So I gave it a try. Read on to see how I did it.
Time: 2 HoursCost: $40Difficulty: Medium
Step 1: Order your print.
Select a photo from your collection.
After going through my millions of photo’s, I picked one that I thought would look good in my bedroom. See it below. I took this picture on one of my beach walks (which I should do WAY more often).
I did the ordering on Staples.com for pickup. Since they don’t print out 12×36 prints I ordered a 24×36 with the plans to cut it down to size. Let me tell you, they print these on regular paper, it is NOT a nice thick piece of photo paper, hence the huge price difference. But, they still look good.
Step 2: Mount the picture on your foam board.
I bought a 12×36 canvas and a large foam board from Michael’s to mount the print on.
Obviously my print was much bigger than the canvas and so was my foam board so I had to cut them down to size. I picked this photo because I knew I’d be able to chop off a bunch from the top and bottom and it would still look ok. I planned to glue it to the foam board first, then to the canvas. (Some tutorials I read online used just the foam board and not the canvas too. You may choose to skip this step and just use the foam board and a store bought frame.)
First I cut the foam board down to 12 inches and then I cut the engineered print down to about 14 inches, making sure to have enough to fold over the top and bottom. I used Krylon Low Odor Spray Glue spray adhesive to glue it to the board and a roller and smoother tool set to make sure there were no bubbles. This is a slow and tricky process. Take your time here to try to avoid any bubbles from forming.
Once it was completely glued down I continued to use the roller tool to smooth it all down. Below is how it looked when I was done. There is one stubborn bubble that just wouldn’t go away but overall it looked good.
I also used some Mod Podge as a top coat which gave it a nice shiny finish. Some tutorials I read said not to do this, but I thought it needed it. You may choose not to if you don’t want a shiny finish. I then glued the piece of form board to the actual canvas using more spray glue. As stated above, you may choose to skip this step and just frame the foam board with a store bought frame.
Step 3: Make a Frame (optional)
After it was glued and dried I thought it needed a frame around it since you could see where I had glued the foam board to the canvas. Luckily we had the perfect pieces of scrap wood in our garage, although you can buy wood for cheap at Home Depot or Lowes. My husband cut them down to size with his saw, and then we nailed and glued them to the canvas. These pieces of scrap wood were a little beat up, so to finish it off I painted them white.
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