Posted on by Erin | Earnest Home

handpainted tile tutorial

Ok, don’t get too excited (but get a little excited) because although this tile isn’t installed yet, it’s done being painted and I LOVE it. I wanted to break this hand painted tile idea into two posts because the creation of the tile is a beast of it’s own and then the installation of the tile is a lot like, well, installing any other tile.

Although I plan on installing the tile over the next couple of days, I was just too excited not to show you how the painting turned out.  It was one of those oddly satisfying projects that are calming because you’re doing something repetitious.  I sat down, put on an audiobook from Monday’s list and went to town. It took me about 3 hours to complete all 50 tiles, but that saved me hundreds of dollars and over 14 days that I would have waited for special order tiles to come in.  I don’t have that kind of time, considering these need to be installed before the carpet goes in on Saturday (finally…)

On a quick trip to Lowe’s yesterday, I bought some standard, white, six-inch tile.  It cost around $24 for a box of 50 tiles.  Then, I snatched up a spray can of primer and a spray can of matte clear topcoat.  I had plenty of black acrylic craft paint at home to use for the design.

I started out by drawing my design on a piece of poster board. I drew a 6″ square, then measured the midpoint of each side (3″) to create another square inside of the 6″ perimeter.  My ‘inside’ square had a 1″ border, creating the look of another little center square.

Last, I measured 1″ from the outside edge of my inner square and created a triangle in each corner.  This triangle will form another square pattern when tiles are put together.

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Using a craft knife, I then cut out the inside design, being careful to leave the outer perimeter uncut.  This left a portion of the design attached to the outer template.

Next, since my tile was a gloss finish, I primed it with a white primer. The primed surface allowed me to see my pencil marks and will ensure the paint sticks better than it would have to a gloss surface.

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Using my template (reinforced with some duct tape since those corners were very delicately attached) I penciled in the design onto each tile.  Then, I painted into the lines using regular acrylic craft paint and a sponge brush.

hand painted tile diy

After allowing each to dry, I was so excited to see how the entire design was coming together!  Doesn’t it look lovely so far?!  I can’t wait to get it up around the fireplace and show you all the finished look!