Friday, August 27, 2010

Easy Peasy Faux French Grainsack Tutorial

Sooooooooooooooooo..................How have all of you been? Summer's been zipping by, hasn't it? I feel like I've missed most of it..........I've been working on the inside of the house for what seems like forever now. :-) But, I'm happy to report I'm zooming (taking a moment to laugh) in on the finale!


My precious daughter came over today and painted my Hubby's bathroom for me... I'll get it all put back together least that's my plan.

Then, on Sunday afternoon I'm hoping to make a couple of shelves for my sewing room.....the very last room. It's going to be a process getting that room finished. I have TONS of things and VERY little space. (That, by the way, is the story of my life.)

I have tons on things to share with you and I'm going to make an effort to get them all posted here ASAP.

But, in the meantime, I've been meaning to post this quickie little tutorial for you forEVER...

So, here goes.

Vintage grainsacks are NOT in my budget...............and........being TIGHTWAD TILLY.........there had to be a better (read cheaper) way, right?

You'll be able to whip one of these up in an afternoon and in my book that's just pretty darn satisfying.

I made mine from canvas dropcloth fabric leftover from the den slipcovers. NEARLY FREE. :-)

I used my old cutting board to tape the fabric to..... It's big and worked great for this project.

It helps to tape it down so you get the stripes nice and even and you won't have to "fight" the darn thing the entire time.

I used pencil to draw lines on my fabric. They won't show after you apply the paint, so no worries.

If you have a rotary cutter type ruler it will do the job perfectly for you. If not, you can measure....make little dots and draw lines from one side to the other.

Even if you don't sew I HIGHLY recommend buying one of these rulers. They are handy for so many things. You'll wonder how you got along without one for so long.

After you've decided how wide you want the stripes and drawn your pencil lines, apply tape to each side of the lines.

You'll need a stencil brush, paper towels and black paint for the next step.

Dip the brush in the paint then swirl it onto the paper towel removing nearly ALL of the paint. Trust want VERY little paint on your brush.

Brush between the tape careful not to smoosh any paint up under the tape. If you use a light hand and pounce it will deliver paint exactly where you want it and will look FAB.U.LOUS when you remove the tape.

Step one finished!...

And, there you have it.....looks good, right??? I painted the first stripe, removed the tape and applied tape for the second stripe.

Oh my gosh........I hope I'm making this clear. It's soooo easy and it's so much fun to have SUCCESS! :-)

Third stripe........same as before.... We're getting the hang of it now! :-)

Now, they don't call me Tightwad Tilly for NOTHIN'... I've told you before that I actually SAVE all of that clear packaging the companies insist on putting everything into these days.

I use it for lots of things......this time for a stencil.

I printed #612 on my computer........laid the plastic over the top so I could trace around the numbers and cut them out with a tiny pair of scissors.

See those little lines on the top/bottom and sides? I like I make those little marks on the stencil and line them up with tick marks on my fabric. That way the stencil will be perfectly centered.

Oh my..... I so hope that made sense. Imagine your fabric folded into fourths....then line up those little tick marks with those fold lines.

I use spray adhesive on the back of the stencil so it's nice and tight.... I don't want any paint running under the stencil or it will look messy.

SIX TWELVE? It's my grandson's birthday... :-)

You could commemorate any special day.........or use letters and create your own monogram.

And, there you go.....whip that little cutie right up into a pillow and you're done.

If you have the paint, brush and spray adhesive this will cost PENNIES to make.

Just right for Tightwad Tilly!

Thanks for hanging in there for me.

Oh my gosh....You are AWESOME!

Have a wonderful weekend.

Lovies and Huggies!



  1. My dear, dear Spencer....I have missed you so much. You have captured my French lovin' heart with this are a genius at sewing...a real pro. I am trying to make a linen lampshade and a pillow too with this fabulous rough look. Come on by when you get a chance sugar, I so miss your chipper comments! BISOUS! Anita

  2. Now that is a fabulous tutorial, Spencer! Thanks for sharing it with us, you talented girl!


  3. Spencer, you are awesome! The pillow is adorable and you make it sound so easy.

  4. I just love Tightwad Tilly. What a great looking pillow. Char

  5. YOU ARE BRILLIANT~!!!! You dont know how much this tutorial means to me. I have needed to make new cushion covers for the two loveseats in my family room and this is the PERFECT answer for me.. I cant say THANK YOU, enough..
    drop cloth is all I need as I have stencil numbers-tape and paint.. this is so terrific and I am thrilled.. did I say, THANK YOU SO MUCH, yet...
    when I'm done and its posted YOU will be getting credit for this fabulous idea..

    hugs-- grinnin like a goon here..

  6. How sweet that pillow is!! You make it look doable! Thanks so much, Spencer! :-)


  7. Wowser, that turned out absolutely darling, chick!! I'm very impressed.

  8. Aw! How sweet! That is so touching that you used '612'!

  9. wowie!!!! its gorgeous!!!!
    I think I am going to make one of those beauties.
    what a great tutourial...when you use the spray adhesive does it stay on the fabric after you take the stencil off?

  10. I love this. I want to try this, you have made it look so easy with your detailed instructions. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Oh Hi Cupcake!! What a sweetie you are for showing us the how-to!! I may just try this for my shop!! Hope all is well in Cupcakeland!
    Things here are good just very busy!!
    Love ya bunches, and can't wait to get this shop open!!
    Have a joyful weekend!!

  12. No - YOU are awesome! I love how this looks. I love the idea of your grandson's birthday. How fun for a wedding or an anniversary too. Just checking to be sure - did you use fabric paint? Thanks for the inspiration.

  13. A great tutorial Spencer, thanks for sharing!

  14. Spencer! It is good to "hear" your voice again! And you have a terrier? Oh, aren't they the cutest dogs? I just drew one today, a wire haired fox terrier! And thank you for your comments on my picture selection; this post required that I scan all those vintage black and white Parisian photos! But it is fun to tell a story and I do hope you got a chance to see Mimi. She is a doll and she lives in Paris!!!! You would love her.

    You take it easy now dearest; get your rest, create, enjoy your dear grandson (he is getting back to school soon!) and your pillow work is outstanding. I just bought one today that I love.

    Mille bisous ma belle Spencer! Anita

  15. Fabulous tutorial and your pillow is wonderful. I really do have to buy a drop cloth. I have painted all over the one I have. Love the pillow. Hugs, Marty

  16. Spencie, this is so sweet! You have done a beautiful job here! I love that perfection in all you do! Just lovely!

    Love, Bonnie

  17. Good morning, Spencer. So glad I found you (from you commenting on MY blog!). Love your faux feedsack pillow - so clever!

  18. HI Spencer, I am your newest follower..I found my way over here and am glad I did! I love your blog. The pillow tutorial is terrific! You are a smarty pants lady!

  19. Thanks for the tutorial! I love the pillow. You did an amazing job, especially the intricate work of cutting out that stencil!
    Have a wonderful Sunday.

  20. Well done! And you make it look so easy! I really do love it!
    Hugs, Lisa

  21. Oh Spencer, you are just so clever. I love your pillow, and you made it sounds like even I might be able to do this!! Love it. Thanks for showing us how. laurie

  22. U rock sister! i tried all weekend to do or find a stencil off the internet to put on my curtain and i dont know what i am doing. Your pillow is perfect and i am jealous!

  23. Oh Spencer! This is so nice of you to share..but I will just go find me a wonderful, industrioius artist like you it!! Yeah, I know. I'm lazy..but the days of such undertakings are over for me. It was fun to read though! :) Made me SORTA wish I was ambitious again. I said "sorta!" :)

  24. Tightwad Tilly strikes again!! I love what you did. I couldn't get my mans hands to cut with those tiny scissors you had to have used. lol

  25. LOVE that cushion,mmmm on my ever growing list.:)
    Sandi xx

  26. Your pillow is lovely, Spencer!
    And so budget friendly, too. :-)

  27. What a great pillow and tutorial!!!! Thanks so much for sharing - looking forward to trying this. Love the grain sacks but yes, they are a, let's just say they compromise "her" ability to buy my cat snacks ;)

    Have a great holiday weekend!


    Romeo and "her"

  28. Hi Spencer,
    Your vintage pillow is wonderful! I want one too :)
    You make it look so easy, I am going to try and make one. You gave us a great tutorial..
    Have a sweet day as sweet as you!

  29. Wowzer! You are inspiring me!, Yup! Little ol' me that doesn't, can't, won't ever be talented ... I might be able to do this instead of writing checks ... maybe there is a new profession on the horizon for me! Chuckle!

    This is gorgeous, you are so talented, Spencer.
    Thank you for sharing ...
    Have a beautiful holiday weekend.
    TTFN ~ Hugs, Marydon

  30. just made that look easy...gonna have to try it now! THANKS!
    Have a great weekend!

  31. Love the pillow and the way it looks on the black and white toile. What a great way to customize something and thrifty too. Thanks for the tutorial:-)

  32. Love this I am going to make one this weekend I have all the supplies. I have wanted one of these but hate spending the money on one, as I make signs & jewelry and spend my money on my supplies. Thank you thank you it is a great tutorial. Debbie

  33. It sounds like you've kept yourself quite busy during the summer! Love the pillow!

  34. Your pillow looks great! It's perfect with that black & white toile chair.

  35. Love your pillow. It sure turned out good. I made one and used butcherblock paper for the numbers..worked good..but I didnt think to put the stripes on..Ive been cutting out more numbers with the butcher paper and putting them on galvanized or wood stuff...I always am lurking on your blog...really enjoy visiting. Sally

  36. Good morning sweet Spencer!!! THANK YOU FOR COMING BY TO SEE ME! And yes, deep waters only hold more treasures...shallow waters are beautiful and more transparent, allowing us to see the bottom; but deep waters are frightening, but the deeper you go, the more interesting secrets are revealed. I just pray for the stamina and courage to discover the treasures within....thank you for your sweet thoughts my friend.

    DAY TWO, ONWARD!!! Anita

  37. What a fabulous pillow and a great tutorial! I love that you save the plastic from packaging - making it into a stencil is brilliant!



Sweet and dear little Chickies....thank you so much for your comments. I read each and every one. I always try to make a return visit........sometimes I fail miserably... but you're alllll soooo special to me!

Many, many hugs!