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There’s a heartfelt “secret” message for my daughter hidden underneath this paint pouring that lets her know exactly how I feel about her. When it’s dry, you’ll have to look at the canvas at an angle to see the words.

To do this you’ll need 2 main things. First, something to write the message with, I used dimensional fabric paint. That brought back memories in the 80’s of puff painting t-shirts! Next you’ll need paint and pouring medium mixture. To make it easy to apply I put it in condiment squeeze bottles.

What’s in the bottles? Acrylic paint mixed with Floetrol from a hardware store. If you’re new to paint pouring and want to know how it all works from setting up your space to mixing the paints to making pours, then get my free Paint Pouring Guide.

Once you write the words on there, it’s very very important that the words are completely dry before going on to the next step, the color!

Squirt a bunch of paint directly on the canvas. It’s quite freeing to just squirt paint all willy nilly on there! Add layers until you’ve got the canvas filled.

This is very forgiving and you don’t need a “perfect” amount of paint. In the video you saw that I didn’t have enough so I just added more.

To create the cells, take a palette knife or something similar, and swipe. This will completely change how the canvas looks.

Over the next few minutes, it will continue to change, with more cells appearing.

So where is the secret message? You can’t see it at all here because the paint is wet. But it will appear as it dries.

This technique works best with Floetrol because of the way it dries. The paint is pulled very flat on the canvas so that when it is dry then you can see the raised words.

If you look closely at the dried canvas below, you can see the letter I and m. This is a very subtle look when the canvas is on the wall. Unless you’re looking at the canvas at an angle most won’t even notice it. That’s why it’s a secret message.

Here’s the canvas ready to go on the wall. You might notice the word “of” on the bottom left.

So now when my daughter goes by this canvas on her wall she will be reminded that I’m proud of her.

If you’re ever looking for a personalized gift to give, try adding a secret message to a paint pouring!

If you’d like to know how to do paint pouring, I’ve got a free downloadable guide for you here.


What do I do when my muse keeps saying “You bought it, you might as well use it”? I use it! Today’s play involves 2 things I’ve bought and not used plus a bunch of O.O.P.S.ies!

It’s almost embarrassing how long I’ve had the felt shapes. How long? Could be at least 5 years probably more. But the good news is felt isn’t like milk, so there’s no expiration date!

It doesn’t look like much right now. But that’s how early layers can be.

The plan was to attach these with gel medium, except I can’t find my gel medium anywhere. Now it’s in a big jar. I don’t know how I managed to hide it someplace where I can’t find it, but I did.

When things like this happen, the best thing to do is grab whatever you’ve got within arm’s reach and make do with it. So, tacky glue to the rescue!

This was a much better choice it turns out than gel medium because being able to squeeze the glue out of the bottle made it really easy to put these flowers down.

Felt is an absorbent material. That means it can absorb a lot of paint. To reduce the amount of paint it would absorb, I added a layer of gesso.

In a perfect world, I’d wait for the gesso to dry. I don’t live in a perfect world, so I didn’t wait. I just added the paint right on top. Spoiler alert- this was a great thing later on the page creating the most wonderful O.O.P.S.!

The next supply, I’d had for a while. Not as long as I had the felt flowers, but quite a few months. Golden Paints in pastel colors.

These paints aren’t my normal color choices but they were new colors just released by Golden when I bought them. So why did I buy them if they’re not really colors I wanted to use? Late night internet shopping. Need I say more?

I tried just using the pastels, but I couldn’t do it. I wasn’t feeling it so I broke down and got out the bright colors. Suddenly I began to really like the pastel colors once I started combining them with the bright colors.

The painted flowers I was loving – the background not so much. It was just yuck to me. But my impatience was about to be rewarded in the most colorful way!

The sky was one O.O.P.S. after another and it seemed like it was going nowhere until I brought in Jill McDowell’s Chinoiserie Bouquet stencil. This was messy mixed media style stenciling and just what it needed.

Remember all that gesso I put on the flowers and then all that paint? Those felt flowers are juicy wet with paint so when the stencil touched them, bits of paint began to unintentionally transfer here and there.

O.O.P.S.!These little bits of color weren’t planned, they were an Outstanding Opportunity Presenting Suddenly! A reward for being impatient and not letting things dry.

The stems of the flowers were courtesy of more mixed media style stenciling using the Fridge Poetry stencil I designed. By using a narrow cosmetic sponge, only parts of the letters were stenciled.

I clean when there’s a good reason or a benefit to it. And there was today! That’s what created this background in an altered book journal. The paint on my fingers and the stencils were cleaned off on there. Now I have a head start on another art journal page.

This art journal page had its ups and downs. Some layers I loved instantly, some not so much. So next time you’re playing, if a layer doesn’t go perfectly just put another layer on top of it.

Want more play? Check out my free workshop, Permission to Play, where we make mixed media art journal out of recycled cardboard!

Here are the supplies used. Some of these links are affiliate links which means I get a small percentage. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and it helps keep the free tutorials coming!

The felt flowers are no longer manufactured- which isn’t surprising considering how long they’ve been in the stash waiting to be used .


A picnic table is great place to add some color to your outdoors. Since it’s outdoors, it means it has to endure the elements, rain, sun, snow and whatever else Mother Nature throws at it.

In the past I’ve used paint samples to do this but that was an interior paint so that is what it would not hold up as well as I wanted over the seasons.

This time I splurged and bought actual outdoor paint designed to hold up to the weather.

It isn’t glorious but taking the time to prep the table is worth the effort. The old loose paint was scraped off and then any loose dirt wiped off.

No primer was used at all. I did add a layer of white but that wasn’t primer because all these paints came with primer mixed in – I’m all good with skipping a step!

One thing to know about outdoor paint is that it should be only for outdoor things. It can be tempting to use up leftover paint on indoor projects but please don’t! Exterior paints should only be used on exterior projects. Did I mention, only use it on exterior stuff?

To add pattern and details, I tried using paint brushes.

But finger painting was just more fun, so I got my hand into the paint.

So is it finished? Nope. Nothing around here is ever finished. More layers can always be added!

Here’s the peanut gallery that kept an eye on me while I was painting. They even managed to keep out of the wet paint.

I definitely didn’t anticipate one thing when I was opening all the paint cans, falling leaves.

This picnic table is over 20 years old but you’d never know that thanks to a fresh coat of paint.

If you’ve got any outdoor furniture, especially if it’s old and worn, try giving it a fresh coat of playful paint!