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June 1, 2010, 4:02 pm betterhomesgardens
Turn a plain bedroom into an enchanted forest with a mural and other clever effects for your kids.
Every young person has wanted to spend time where the wild things are. You can make your child’s dreams come true with a bedroom makeover that looks as though The Lord of the Rings set designers have come for a visit. And the good news is that none of the changes are difficult or expensive. Paint, plywood and a few bits of greenery are all you’ll need to make magic happen, and welcome in a little fairyland.
For a cool side table try a cardboard log stool. You can pop a reading lamp on it and even sit on it – the stool holds up to 110kg!
While the woodsy finish of your typical sturdy timber bed is entirely in keeping with the forest setting, you might like to soften its lines. To do this, add a green mosquito net and perch delicate sparkly butterflies here and there.
Roll a coat of blue paint onto the ceiling and bring it down to cover the top one-third section of each wall. Where this colour ends, another begins. For a successful transition between these colours, opt for an uneven rather than a straight-line finish to each band and, using a large damp sea sponge, blend while both paint colours are still wet.Cover the window
With grass green tab-top sheer curtains and a blind featuring a twig design. The blind looks expensive and custom-made but it isn’t. In fact, you can buy it at a largePaint a magical woodland on the walls.
Roll pale yellow paint from the base up to the middle section of the walls. While the pale yellow paint is still wet, swap rollers and, using green paint, colour the middle section up to meet the still-wet sky. For a smooth merging between the colours, overlap the painted areas with rough and uneven rolls of paint, then blend with a sponge, as for the sky. Allow the background to dry. Then paint ghosted trees and a carpet of flowers such as daisies and forget-me-nots.
4. Create ‘hinges’ and door pulls for the mediaeval doors. For the hinges, enlarge the template (pdf below)to suit the size of your doors, then trace four onto 3mm plywood. Cut out hinges, then sand and paint them black. When dry, glue each hinge in place to the face of the mediaeval doors. For door pulls, paint two timber curtain rings black and attach them using copper pipe clips and screws.
5. Make a special feature of toy storage. From a 12mm sheet of plywood (you can use an offcut from the tree in the pdf), cut seven evenly spaced 190mm-diameter holes – three across the top and four across the bottom. Spray-paint the ply and seven 200mm plastic garden pots dark brown, and let dry. Run a line of glue under the rim of each pot and drop into a hole. Using a hot-glue gun, cover the right side of the painted ply with synthetic moss (available in sheets). Position the unit on its side under the tree and fill the pots with cute forest creatures.
6. A three-dimensional tree completes the look. Transfer the enlarged tree template (in the pdf below), onto a 2400 x 1200 x 12mm sheet of plywood. Following the marked outline, use a jigsaw to cut both pieces. Sand and stain the pieces with Cabot’s stain, and let dry. Drill holes through the branches of the large piece, if you plan to use bud lights. Position bud lights with wiring at the back. Pre-drill evenly spaced pilot holes through the tree and a corresponding set into the straight side of the branch, then glue and screw the branch to the tree, as pictured. Fix the tree to the wall using wall plugs to suit. Decorate with butterflies and fairy lights.Wall mural
To create a magical atmosphere, use folk-art painting techniques to produce a wall mural featuring a forest of trees with daisies and forget-me-nots popping up from the forest floor. For practice, you may like to create a mini mural on paper before you let loose on the wall.
Daisies Mix magenta, blue and warm white artist’s acrylics. Load a Number 6 round brush with the mix, then side-load the brush with white paint. Each daisy should have 8-13 petals. To make each petal, set the brush down to spread the bristles, pull and lift up to obtain a tapered end. Before you begin painting each flower, determine the angle of each petal so that you can make every stroke accurately – some will be almost horizontal. Using the same method, paint white daisies here and there. Form the daisy centres with a creamy yellow paint. Tap a little white paint onto the flower centres for highlight.
Forget-me-nots Mix blue and violet artist’s acrylics. Load a Number 6 round brush with the mix, then side-load your brush with a little white paint. Set your brush down straight, pull and lift to create each petal. Each flower is made up of 4 petals. Paint the flower centre yellow then, using a fine brush, add a touch of magenta around the edge at the base of the petals.
Tall grass and stems Using a watery mix of tan and green acrylic paints, use Number 6 and Number 10 filbert brushes to create stems and tall grasses, with some hooked down, in the foreground.
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