Coloring Book Cut Paper DIY Decor
After two years in our little home, we’ve repainted basically every surface; seriously, every piece of trim, every ceiling—who paints ceilings in three shades of white??—every wall. They all have fresh new colors, but despite the dramatic change all that painting made, that’s as far as we’ve come. This year, I’m determined to fill the every empty wall space in our home, and since we haven’t won the lottery (I suppose you have to play more than once…) or doubled our salaries, we’ll have to do this on the cheap, which means lots of easy DIYs on a budget.
Since I spend a great deal of time in my studio—teaching lessons, practicing, answering emails, creating materials, etc.—we decided to begin there in our quest to decorate and brighten our home. Last year, Cory and I made this ceramic tile photo display with lily pictures we took on vacation, and in an attempt to prettify my bookshelf, I whipped up this quick and easy miniature bud vase as well. Now I love having this happy little floral cut paper piece above the desk in my little mini-office (formerly the closet)! One more wall down… and oh-so-many to go, but you have to start somewhere, right?
This cut paper DIY piece starts with a coloring book page because I possess literally zero drawing ability whatsoever but have several of those anti-stress, beautifully intricate coloring books lying around, which I feel I should put to good use since the amount of time I’ve found for relaxing, de-stress coloring has been laughably minimal. With some time, patience, and just a few cheap materials, you’ll have a fun, unique hanging to start filling those empty wall spaces! Though it took my several hours start to finish (perfect time for some re-binging of The Office on Netflix), this project couldn’t be easier to accomplish!
Coloring Book Cut Paper DIY Decor—Materials:
- Coloring page (mine is from Coloring for Inspiration)
- Colored tissue paper
- Construction Paper
- X-ACTO Knife
- Self-Healing Mat for cutting
- Glue stick
- Mat board, optional
- White paper, optional
- Frame if desired
- Sawtooth Hangers if needed (if your frame doesn’t have an easy way to hang)
Get your materials for this simple project here!
Coloring Book Cut Paper DIY Decor—Instructions:
- Decide on your coloring page, and if possible, make a backup copy or two just in case something happens and you find you need one (or in case you want to make another).
- Tape your coloring page to your construction paper and lay them on your self-healing cutting mat.
- Using the X-acto knife, carefully cut out the desired design from the coloring page. I decided I wanted the flower pattern visible, so I started from one edge and slowly cut out that portion of the coloring page. You can also cut around lines instead of cutting out the parts intended for coloring, or you can mix it up and do a bit of both! Just remember to keep some space between your cuts, as you’ll need construction paper remaining around your design for adhering the tissue paper. I attached the tissue paper to this same side, making this the back side of your design, so keep this in mind as you orient your coloring page!
- Once you’ve cut the entire design, carefully remove the taped coloring page to avoid ripping the construction paper (I had to lift the coloring paper up and cut the tape itself in a few places). Since this is the back of the project, don’t worry about tape scraps staying attached in places.
- Cut colored tissue paper in the rough size and shape of your cutouts, and carefully glue them to the back of your design. To easily determine how much to cut and in what shape, I lay the tissue paper over the design. You can also put some white copy paper under the design to brighten the cut portions a bit. Since tissue paper adheres with very little glue, I found that lightly dabbing the glue stick onto the construction paper provided plenty of glue but didn’t make a mess of either the tissue or construction paper.
- If you’d like to mat your cut paper design, you can either look for a pre-cut mat that fits the size and shape you created, or you can pretty easily cut your own from solid mat boards, which you can find at hobby or craft stores (usually with the picture frames). I used a standard-sized 9”x12” piece of construction paper and wanted to frame it in an 11”x14” frame, which made the typical 8”x10” cut-out less than ideal, so I cut my own from a larger mat board.
- To cut your own mat, first decide on your frame and purchase a mat board large enough for the frame. Then, remove the fake picture that came inside the frame, and set it on the back of the mat board on top of your self-healing cutting mat, lining up two of the edges of the picture with the edges of the mat board. Using a straight-edge, trace the remaining two edges of the picture, then use your X-acto knife to carefully cut the mat board to size.
- Next, measure your cut paper design and decide how much overlap you want between the construction paper and the mat board (to tape the cut paper to the mat). For my design and the 9”x12” construction paper, I decided I needed about ¼” of overlap on the sides and about ⅛” for the top and bottom. Since my mat was 11”x14” I needed to measure in 1 ¼” from each side and 1 ⅛” in from the top and bottom, centering my piece on the mat board. I used a straight edge to mark lines at those measurements on each side.
- Carefully use your X-acto knife to cut out the center portion of your mat board. I recommend using a straight edge to guide you and cutting slowly!
- Tape your cut paper project to the mat, frame it, and hang it on one of your empty walls! (If your frame, like mine, doesn’t have a great way to hang, attach a sawtooth to the back of the frame for better hanging and greater stability.)
- For brighter colors and more contrast, place some basic white copy paper behind the cut paper design before putting the back on the frame!
I hope you enjoyed this easy, inexpensive DIY cut paper project! If you’d like more simple home decor and organization DIYs (and delicious and easy recipes!) delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to Our Sweetly Spiced Life over on the sidebar on your right! Have you tried cut paper before? Let me know what you’ve made in the comments, or share photos of your creations with us on Facebook!
Until next time! Sweetly yours,
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