How to Make a Reverse Canvas | Vintage, Paint and more...

Friday, August 24, 2018

How to Make a Reverse Canvas

 We are in full wedding mode over here right now.  My granddaughter's wedding is only 6 weeks away and things are getting a little hectic.  But, today I had to take a bit of a break from lace and flowers and all things wedding and do a bit of Fall.  Usually, by now I have our home all decked out in its Fall regalia but, this year it hasn't happened yet.  Hopefully, next week I will be pretty much done with the wedding and can put up some Fall.  So, I decided to make a little Fall sign on a reverse canvas today.

Vintage Paint and more... making Fall decor using an artist canvas and Chalk Couture transfers and chalk paste

I love the reverse canvas method of making signs and art for our home.  It is so easy and actually inexpensive to do.  I have had several requests to show how to do this method so I put together a tutorial.

How to Make a Reverse Canvas

This post contains affiliate links.  These links do not cost you anything however, they do give me a few pennies to buy more hot glue so I can continue to bring you great projects.

What you will need:

I used a 9"x12" stretched artist canvas for this project.  I like to purchase them in bulk as I use so many to make signs for my Etsy shop,  So, I usually have several on hand at any one time.  For this project, I also decided to use the back side of the canvas.  I just love the look of the fabric back - almost like a rustic linen or a drop cloth (which I use a lot in my home).  If you decide to use the front side and use the Chalk Couture products you would need to give it a coat of Matte Mod Podge or craft paint so you reduce your chance of getting "bleeding" under the transfer when you chalk it.

Vintage Paint and more... using an artist's stretch canvas to make a reverse canvas

There are several steps to this project and it may look as though it is really involved and takes a long time to do.  However, it takes very little time at all. It is actually a rather quick and fairly simple project to do. Let's get started.

Step 1:  Place your Chalk Couture transfers where you would like them to be.  I placed the words so I could fit the image of the pumpkins in between them.  I then used some painter's tape to tape on each edge of the transfers so as not to accidentally get chalk on the canvas (ask me how I know that could happen).

Vintage Paint and more... using an artist canvas and Chalk Couture transfers and chalk paste to make a Fall sign - placing the transfers

Step 2:  Using the Chalkology Paste in School Bus Yellow apply to the top half of each word.  Then use the Bark paste and apply to the bottom half of each word.  I then used my finger to blend the line between the two.

Vintage Paint and more... applying Chalk Couture chalk paste to their transfers to make a Fall sign

Step 3: When you remove the transfers you will have a pretty little blending of both words as you see below. I then applied the Chalk Couture Pumpkin transfer between the two words and applied Chalkology Paste in Orange on the body of the pumpkins and Bark on the stems.

Vintage Paint and more... applying the chalk paste to the pumpkin transfer for a Fall sign

Step 4:  Below is how the canvas looked when I removed the transfer.  I love this cute little Fall sign.  But, we are not finished yet.  Using a blow dryer I dried the chalk before I continued to the next step. 

Vintage Paint and more... After applying the chalk paste to the back of an artist canvas

Step 5:  Next, I used a craft knife to cut around each of the staples holding the canvas on the frame.  

Vintage Paint and more... cutting around each staple on the back of an artist canvas to make a reverse canvas

Step 6:  Then I removed the canvas from the frame simply by pulling it away from the staples where it had been cut. 

Vintage Paint and more... removing an artist canvas from the frame to make a reverse canvas

Step 7:  Once it's pulled away you will find this pretty little frame that you can stain or paint in whatever way you choose to accent your project.

Vintage Paint and more... frame found after removing the canvas from an artist stretch canvas

Step 8:  Now you need to prep the canvas to apply it to the frame.  You will be cutting the canvas along the inside groove where it wrapped around the frame.  I use a ruler to draw a line to make sure I am cutting it straight. 

Vintage Paint and more... drawing the cutting lines on the canvas to make a reverse canvas

Step 9:  After the line is drawn simply cut on it.  The excess canvas removed will be thrown away.

Vintage Paint and more... cutting on the drawn lines to make a reverse canvas

Step 10:  Apply the canvas to your frame.

Vintage Paint and more... Frame after staining for a reverse canvas

Step 11: I do this by stapling it to the back of the frame right over the old staples.  I start by stapling each corner first and making sure the canvas is tight and straight while doing so.  Then I staple the center, continuing to make sure it stays taut. 

Vintage Paint and more... stapling the cut canvas to the back of the frame

And when you're done this is what you will have:

Vintage Paint and more... A Fall sign made on a reverse canvas using Chalk Couture transfers and chalk paste

A finished bit of chalk art in a frame.  All done and ready to hang in your home or give to a friend.  

Vintage Paint and more... A  step-by-step tutorial of how to make a farmhouse Fall sign using an artist stretch canvas and Chalk Couture transfers and chalk paste

So, what do you think?  Will you be trying this new amazing fun craft technique?  

If you would like to have one of the fun Fresh Pumpkin signs but really don't have the time to make your own check out my Etsy Shop where I have this one and a few more for sale.  

If you would like to know more about Chalk Couture and the products they offer you can find that at Chalkboard Art Easy as 1-2-3 and their products in my Chalk Couture Shop.

You can find my most frequently used craft supplies in my Amazon Shop

Until next time have fun creating something you love.

 I will be linking this post to the parties listed on the Where I Party page.  Please be sure to go by and check out all the great projects and inspiration found at each one.

If you like this post you may also like these:

                                                 Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice Sign

                                                   Easy Lacy Vintage Pumpkin Tutorial

                                                          Easy Twine Wrapped Acorns


  1. I love this, what a great idea and I love the picture! Thanks for sharing on To Grandma's House We Go!

    1. Thank you so much - it is an easy wy to make a framed piece of art - I love doing them.

  2. Super cute idea! Happy Fall, Kippi

  3. I love this project! Thanks for sharing!

  4. What a great tutorial Cathy! I love the blending of the colors. Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  5. Reverse canvases are so fun. I did some earlier this year. Yours looks great, Cathy! Thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm!

    1. Thank you Kathleen. These are a lot of fun to make.

  6. What a fun idea to try this season. Thank you for sharing the tutorial!

    1. It is a lot of fun to do and thank you for visiting.

  7. Oh totally in love with this! Featuring when my party opens up tonight!

    1. So glad you like it and thank you for the feature.