Valentine's Day DIY Gift Idea

Contributed by: Denise of Thrifty by Design and Salvation Army Thrift Store Creative Expert.

Why not make your sweetheart custom art for Valentine's Day! A thoughtful gift and you can easily create it on a budget. This DIY is all about refreshing a secondhand painting from your local Salvation Army Thrift Store. Turn a drab piece of art into a love infused momento that keeps on giving.


  •  Thrifted painting
  • Gesso or primer (optional)
  • Paint brushes or sponges
  • Acrylic paint
  • Mod Podge (optional)
  • Pencil (optional)

You can easily score a secondhand piece of art from your local Salvation Army Thrift Store. Choose something small for your first foray into DIY art making. I would find something that has either a canvas or wood base. I went with this dark 12" by 12" canvas. I love this secondhand painting because I planned to turn into something super cute for a kid's room.

First you'll want to add a coat of gesso or primer to the painting. This is an optional step but helps mask out the old painting and gives you a fresh start for your masterpiece. You can even use white acrylic paint as your base. Paint 2 to 3 coats allowing to dry in-between. Once dry you're ready to start your painting. Use a pencil to sketch out or block out your design. I did a rough sketch then started adding acrylic paint. 
Once I painted the main shapes I then added a few coats of colour then used a pencil and watercolour pencils to darken the outline of the shapes. Next I used a small brush to add the text. My final step was sealing it with 1 to 2 coats of Mod Podge.

And that's it! Here's the series I created using old art. Feel free to try other materials - you can collage or decoupage old art. Why not! And your Valentine will be thrilled to receive a one-of-a-kind masterpiece by you.

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