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Homemade Art

When times are tough or budget is tight, it is often home decor purchases that get put on the back burner. Funds get allocated to things that matter most, and let’s face it, that is the proper way to go about life. But no matter how difficult the financial situation may be, we all know that weathering it is always easier if we are surrounded with pretty things, and they don’t have to cost a bundle! When it comes to art, it is in the eyes of the beholder. Art doesn’t only live in galleries and museums, you can easily find it on the street, at local markets, on magazine pages, even in kitchen supply stores.

Today I am sharing the story of a piece of “art” that has a central spot in my home; its original purpose was not to serve as décor. It is very much the reflection of my taste and a budget friendly alternative to the original I fell in love with.

A few years ago decorating with vintage bus scrolls was all the rage. I loved the rawness of them, and the fact that each one of them had a story and played a major role in communities. Many people depended on those signs on their daily commutes. I did in fact come across an authentic one in Melbourne, Australia, but the price tag of $1,000 was way out of my art purchasing budget. Not to mention that they are often very long and require an adequately high wall to display them on; none of which I have in my house.

Vintage Bus Scroll

It was in a novelty home decor store where I spotted the beautiful original scroll, and in the spirit of current decorating trends, they also had a selection of tea towels mimicking the scroll aesthetic.

Tea towels

I saw an opportunity here and purchased one of them for $18.00. The design had the shop’s name as the final destination, and the “stops” were the streets leading to the store. This was a perfect answer to my decorating desire and a beautiful way to remember my vacation! At home, I purchased a vintage frame for $5.00 at a thrift store, had a piece of glass cut to measure for an additional $10.00, and had created an original piece with my very own stamp on it for a mere $33.00!

Tea Towel Art

If “tea towel art” isn’t an option for you, the alternatives are endless. There is no shortage of beautiful and inexpensive wrapping papers, fabrics, greeting cards, or vintage book pages you can use to decorate your home and make it uniquely yours, and here is the shot of my kitchen wall to prove it. On that wall you can find a selection of homemade items (the pom-poms and “happy” message sign), childrens’ art, vintage book illustration (the monkey), art market finds (the bear and dandy gentleman), concert ticket stub from 2004 (“lambchop”) and artsy greeting cards (the orange bird and clothes mannequin).

Jelena's Art Wall

If you have an original art wall and want to show it off, please send me some pictures via Twitter (@Poppyseedliving) and I will share it through my blog and website. If you are yet to create one, I hope this post serves as inspiration.

Jelena Pticek

Jelena Pticek

Writer and expert

Jelena is a Canadian artist who specialises in upcycling furniture, and the Preloved Upcycling Ambassador. She was recently selected to be Annie Sloan’s Painter in Residence, and is always on the hunt for inspiration for her latest pieces.