A Canvas Floor Cloth’s Journey
People often ask “How long does it take you to paint a canvas floor cloth?”
The whole process of creating a canvas area rug, or canvas floor cloth, takes many days before the first brush stroke of applying the design.
It begins with a bolt of raw cotton canvas. We cut a length of 20 yards and soak both sides with very hot water. The canvas is laid out in the sun to preshrink. This is necessary to prevent warping once the canvas floor cloth is sewn.
Each piece is measured, ironed, and mitered corners are sewn to create a strong corner stone for the rug. The hem is sewn and the rug is ready to receive the preliminary coats of paint beginning with the hem on the backside. Paint seals the fringe of the hem and we match the color to whatever we’ll use on the border to create continuity of color on the edges.
We then apply a coat of exterior acrylic paint as a base coat waiting a day to dry before painting two coats of the color used for the top coat. Three days later we are finally ready to apply the design and begin painting.
“I think most artists know this but not all may admit it. I really believe the art is channeled from somewhere else other than my consciousness. It is as if I go somewhere when I begin and come out of a trance several hours later and marvel at what I’ve painted.” Laurel
Let the Painting Begin
Depending on the size of the canvas floor cloth and the intricacy of the art, the painting may take one to several days. Stamping is often a big part of the design, especially for canvas floor cloths that are used in dining areas, leaving the more intricate part of the design for the border where it will be exposed.
Using techniques such as washes or sponging, used for texture and depth in the art work, adds an extra day as these have to dry thoroughly before continuing with paint brush applications.
Weather Makes a Difference
When the canvas floor cloth design is completed the rug stays on the table drying for several days. The weather has a lot to do with this. In Costa Rica we can complete the floor cloths much more quickly in the dry season!
We then begin applying the water based polyurethane, waiting 12 hours in between each coat. Several coats are applied and then another 4-5 day wait cures the finish before shipping or doing the installation.
I explain to clients, “You wouldn’t varnish a wood floor and move in the next day would you?”
This technical breakdown of creating a canvas floor cloth does not reflect the hours of time in consultation with the client, creating the actual design or custom stamps and stencils. This is vital for the creation of an exclusive design created specifically for each client. The result is a stunning piece of art that fits perfectly into the home,hotel, restaurant or business.
If you have any questions or comments, please use the comment area below. We’d love to hear from you.