DIY: Herringbone Pattern Painting

When my roommates moved out, they left some rather large (36″X36″) prefab art canvases. I decided it was about time to revamp them because now they don’t match much in the house. After browsing around pinterest, I came across some great art pieces where a white herringbone pattern was painted over brightly colored designs and I thought- easy-peasy!


Here’s what I started with. Since canvases are expensive, it’s nice to start by recycling something else to use as the base. Check out Goodwill for old canvases, and you can find something that’ll work for you, for cheap.


I went to the fashion district recently, where I picked up fabric for several projects. Knowing this has been on my to-do list, I made it a point to find bright, colorful fabric, in a linear direction. I then wrapped the canvas with this fabric.


Since I don’t have a ton of pinks around the house, I decided to paint and add in colors from my left over paint. I added lots of blues and oranges.


After 5 minutes in the hot LA sun, it dried up quick.


I was dreading this next step, because I thought it would take a long time. The next step was taping off the herringbone pattern. This past Saturday I was up early drinking coffee in bed while TBS was on. A movie had just started and I decided to use the time efficiently, and I just started taping it off while watching the movie.


It was actually very easy, as I wasn’t being fussy with it. It was kind of nice repeating the steps over and over while watching the movie.


Time flew by and before I knew, I finished!


That’s a lot of herringbone! For visual interest I pulled a few pieces off to reveal…


This! Keep in mind, where the tape is, is where the colorful pattern will be showing on the final product. It’s challenging to think reversely like this.


Time to paint before the masking tape peels off! My white spray paint was acting up, and I was still in pjs (not about to run to the hardware store) so I decided to use a roller and my left over Dove Valspar paint from Lowe’s.


I was careful to not un-stick the tape while rolling the white paint. Three coats of paint and a short drying time later…


It’s time for the big reveal.


It came out excellent! It adds just the right amount of texture and color to the room. I just can’t get over how easy it was.

10 thoughts on “DIY: Herringbone Pattern Painting

    • Given how big my canvas was, I needed to use a tape that’s to scale with the canvas, so I used regular scotch masking tape in a two inch thickness. I think I got it at the Do It Center or Lowes.

  1. I’m in the process of doing a similar project (also reusing found “canvas” – mine are actually atrocious old prints that were framed and matted so I just painted the print and mat (they’re stuck together). Yours is definitely one of my favorites I’ve seen!

    I’m not done taping yet (realized the spray paint I used wasn’t totally dry yet). I’m thinking I might redo the tape as I like how yours is a more perfect pattern and mine is a bit more willy nilly so far.

    I’m actually going to do at least 2 – one with metallics, which is the one I’m working on now. I used a several metallic spray paint colors. The other will be with acrylic paints in bold jewel tones. I LOVE anything metallic and shiny but I also love the examples I’ve seen with bold, deep colors.

    • I picked out the fabric in LA’s fabric district purely based on the color and pattern, but it feels like a cotton. It’s not super thick, but a tight enough fabric that you don’t see the image on the painting of the canvas I was recycling. Hope this is helpful.

  2. I love these ideas if you were to buy this type of art at Pier 1 you would be spending $200 apiece. I love changing my art work this gives me an affordable option !
    Thx thx thx

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