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William’s First Birthday – DIY Memory Canvas

This is probably my first crafty post, but I hope that you like it, as I was so happy with the results that I thought it would be a good one to share for future birthdays and inspiration.

I got the idea for this from Pinterest, where someone had done a birthday card for their child and it showed a house floating in the sky, held by lots of balloons made from thumb-prints. It was a simple idea, but I liked it and wanted to expand it into something a bit more special.

I remember my auntie doing a canvas for my eldest cousin when he turned one. It was a huge canvas, full of handprints, marked with everyone’s name and a message. I believe my own tiny, three year-old hand is on there somewhere.

So with the two ideas combined, I came up with this…


All it took was a cheap canvas, some acrylic paint, some marker pens and some family. And a little love too.

On William’s actual birthday, as he napped, my mum and I set about creating this little beauty. A watered down wash of blue created the sky, with fluffy white clouds dabbed on with cotton wool. Once it was dry, I carefully outlined a small plane, which we filled in with a bright pillar-box red and completed with a little pilot’s window and propeller. My mum drew a floating banner and painted it roughly in white to add a little shadow and dimension.

Once dry, we outlined in a fine black marker and wrote a rainbow birthday banner message – Happy 1st Birthday William 12 – 06 – 2013.

Then came the fun part, on the day of his party, friends and family gathered around and pressed thumbs into paints and filled that sky with balloons. There are still some vital thumbprints missing from that sky, but I’ll get them soon enough.

The sky’s (pardon the pun) the limit with this canvas. You could change it to a space theme, with a swirling universe and thumbprint planets. Or perhaps turn the thumbprints into animals.

I treasure this so much. I do hope that, one day, William will do too. A sky full of bright balloons, a sky full of family.

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5 Comments

  • Reply
    lucy at dear beautiful
    25th June 2013 at 8:05 am

    This looks so fab. Well done you.
    We made a finger print guest book on a canvas for the little man's birthday party. It looks so lovely on his memory shelf.
    I'm currently planning a different take on it for the little miss. Because clearly she needs one too, but not the same! 😉 X

  • Reply
    Lauren
    25th June 2013 at 8:10 am

    This is fantastic. It looks really pretty and is so special x

  • Reply
    Sugar Spun Sisters
    25th June 2013 at 8:30 am

    Ahh I love how this turned out! And we were so proud to have our thumballoons on there too 🙂

    Eve xxx

  • Reply
    EilidhPie
    25th June 2013 at 10:23 am

    That is such a wonderful idea! What a lovely keepsake for him! Xo

  • Reply
    Oh so amelia
    25th June 2013 at 7:08 pm

    What a lovely idea! And a keepsake too 🙂 xx

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