Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!

Versatile modern canvas art DIY/repurposing tutorial

I think this is my fave DIY project of 2020!! Not including our recent bathroom reno, but that's a different category... anyway I recently did this very quick and easy (even for me, with a newborn and toddler) DIY art piece and I LOVE it!!

When I got this leather bench (to add seating and nicely fill this corner by the door), I decided I really had to stop dragging my feet about art for this wall. We have two mirrors in this room, and used to have some small vintage-look oil paintings, so I wanted something that was definitely different. I've seen abstract black and white prints and paintings in decor for years, and this is heavily inspired by... a bunch of them. It's definitely not an original style of art, but it was a fun creative experience doing it, and this exact one is unique!

DIY abstract art on a thrifted canvas

You will need:

  • Cheap, ugly, or unwanted framed canvas (mine was $12.99 at Goodwill and I didn't even read the message until looking at the photos later! :P)
  • White wall paint, small roller, and paintbrush
  • Black acrylic paint and paintbrush(es)
  • Painter's tape
  • Newspaper/large paper
  • Spray paint


1. Tape off the frame and paint over the old art. I did three coats to make sure the old message was covered!

2. Paint the design using acrylic paint of your choice. I actually used printer's ink cause that's what I had on-hand. It was nice and thick and dried shiny which gave it more drama!

I was looking at a print in a moodboard I'd recently pinned when I painted this. I've since noticed a similar type of art on a bunch of pins I have going back several years. You can't go wrong with a swoopy swirly shape, different thicknesses, and a few dots!

Around this point I also switched the hanging mechanism by unscrewing and screwing in so it can hang vertically.

3. Cover the art you just painted with large paper and tape off so only the frame is visible. (Note: if you like the frame as-is, you can skip this and you're done! This one was cheap fake wood and already chipping.)

4. Spray paint the frame in a color of your choice. This was high-gloss black.

Reveal! And hang!

It's perfect above this bench!

I also love it when we move the bench around! It's a really modern look, but I think art and light fixtures are great elements to play with in a traditional home too. Great mix!

I'm so happy with this one and it's really improved our living room! It was fun and easy too!

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