How to make art for the walls of your house that have been blank for four+ years:
Step 1: Create a workspace.
This may include removing straw hats, football gloves, dead flowers, spare sheets, old mail, a dead camera, and twenty-eight cents from your table.
Correction: twenty-nine cents.
Step 2: Is it decent to go to McDonalds for the sixth day in a row for a sweet tea and small sundae? Answer: If you have to ask, the answer is "no."
Step 3: Try and remember where you put the fabric you bought last October specifically for this project. Find it hidden away in a drawer with the baby ducky fabric you bought for a baby quilt. Realize you have poor follow-through skills. Also realize you failed to wash and/or even iron the fabric you so lovingly spent eight dollars on last fall. Decide it is nothing a little Downy Wrinkle Releaser can't fix post-project.
Step 4: Windex or clean the table in a vain attempt at removing the glitter and glue left over from last Christmas' cards.
Step 5: Assemble your materials. Search the house for your staple gun. Look first in the tool box, as if you've ever put a tool back where it belongs in your life. Search the tool shelf. Search the basement. Search your craft drawers. Even search the garage, since the one and only time you can recall using it was to staple garden twine to hold up your green beans. Finally have the presence of mind to search the tool drawer (yes, drawer), and lo! Staple gun.
Large canvas, $20 from Michael's with a coupon; Lantern Bloom by Laura Gunn fabric in Textured Stripe Turquoise, $8ish from Etsy; POS Staple gun.
Step 6: Lay the fabric right-side down on the table. Lay the canvas canvas-side down over the fabric. Pull one side of the fabric up over the back of the canvas. I used the selvage edge so I could line it up with the wood to make sure the fabric was straight. Staple first in the center of the side, then once on either side of that to hold the fabric down.
Step 7: Begin shaking your staple gun when it stops stapling. Check that it is not jammed and has staples. Wonder if maybe it just needs more staples, just in case. Repeat step 5, to search for extra staple, which you just know are in the house somewhere.
Step 8: Call your mom, ask her to bring staples and her staple gun.
Step 9: Talk to your mom for half an hour about the dogs, vacation, the garden, everything but the four foot wide art project on your dining room table.
Step 10: Her staple gun works great. Shoot dirty looks at your POS staple gun, which has now been used twice in its short life. Finish stapling the first side, then begin stapling the opposite side, pulling the fabric taut. Then staple the remaining two sides. Staple first in the middle, then move outwards, keeping the fabric tight and without wrinkles.
Step 11: Try to figure out how to wrap the corners. Staple really close to one end, then fold the fabric over the corner just so, then staple the heck out of it.
Stapling the heck out of it
Step 12: Trim the excess fabric from the canvas. Give to your mom, who is super duper excited to make pillows, aka dog toys, for your couch.
Step 13: Repeat step 5 for frame hangers. Until they are found inside a shelf/drawer/toolbox, enjoy your new, uhh, shelf art!
Total Cost: Canvas- $20, Fabric- $9, Staples- free = $29
Total Time: Began at 6pm, ran out of staples by 6:30, watched an episode of True Blood until Mom came over, finished around 9:15= 3.25 hours
Actual Time Spent Not Goofing Around: 45 minutes, max.