Large Wall Mural

Michelle Dodson
by Michelle Dodson
6 Materials
3 Days

My brother bought a house here in San Diego and the dining room had a HUGE bare wall, so I decided to make him an art piece for his birthday.

He used to be a commercial fisherman (crabber) and we LOVE all things nautical. I found the perfect "mural" online for about $13.00

Unfortunately, I didn't read the fine print when I ordered it - it was being shipped from China. So long story short, it didn't get here in time for his birthday.

To give you some scale - the table seats 8 comfortably. I think the overall size is about 5' x 7'.

I started by making a wooden frame. Initially, I put it together using a staple gun and heavy duty staples.

Once I had the frame built, I attached muslin as a backing with the staple gun and THEN I attached the mural. I made the initial frame a bit too large and the material was REALLY tight. So tight in fact that it snapped the frame. I had to remove ALL the staples from both the mural and the backing, on my knees, on the tiled dining room floor. Such fun! Back to Home Depot for more wood.

I made the SECOND frame much sturdier by using wood screws and adding blocks at all the areas where the frame was connected. I also upgraded from muslin to a painters drop cloth.

Once I had everything re-attached I added 1" nail head trim in an antique bronze finish. I had to use an awl to make pilot holes before nailing them in place. I put a piece of cardboard over the individual nail heads when hammering them in so they wouldn't get dinged up. Then I sprayed the whole thing with Scotch Guard. I did 3 coats, making sure it was completely dry between each one. (1 full can).

It took a lot of work and a fair amount of cussing to get it just right. It also ended up costing a lot more than I had originally planned, but the look on his face when he saw it was totally worth it!

Suggested materials:
  • 1 x 3's   (Home Depot)
  • 4 yards of muslin   (Joanne Fabrics)
  • Staple gun & heavy duty staples   (Home Depot)
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  • MHN MHN on Jan 03, 2019

    It's obvious just how much you love your brother! Excellent job on the entire project. I especially appreciate you filling everyone in on the mishaps you had along the way to steer us in the right direction.

    What material is the "mural" made of? Is it a photo/collage that you made? If not, would you mind sharing where you acquired it? Initially, that's what drew me to your DIY project.

    Again, great job!

    Very sincerely,

    MH Northrup

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  • Carolina Hover Carolina Hover on Dec 30, 2019

    hi Michele this is beautiful.. where can i get this mural? i look into this website and i dont see it.. i love it.. thank you so much for sharing

  • Martha Martha on Mar 22, 2020

    Love what you hade done! Great idea!