Monday, September 10, 2012

DIY Painted Foam Mat

[I know I promised I would share this last week, but coming home from the cottage on Tuesday put me a day behind with everything, and I don’t generally post on the weekend . . . perhaps this will be the return of me blogging a bit more consistently]

Rug Horizonal Cropped WM

I have come across several fabulous tutorials for DIYing mats using the interlocking foam squares but I want you to know that you have even more options. You know those foam kitchen mats that are squishy like memory foam but covered in a tacky pattern?

Rug Before

You can take that eye sore – I found mine for under $10 at Costco – and doctor it with latex paint in whatever colour and pattern that your heart desires.

The power of paint strikes again!

How To Transform Your Foam Mat

The key to success? Primer.

Since the foam is porous, it really soaks up a lot of paint. I was running very low on Zinsser primer so I was only able to do 2 coats but I know what a difference even just two coats made to the process.

Keep painting it with primer until you can no longer see the original design on the mat. Make sure you look at it from multiple angles – even when it looked covered, I could still see the raised edges of the design.

I used a roller to apply my primer, alternating the direction with each coat. Once I ran out of primer, I used a tester of what I thought would be my base colour to paint several more coats.

Too light.

Next, I switched to the green paint tester that I used to transform my wooden boxes.

Painted Wooden Boxes 1

My thinking was that the green storage cubes in my Martha Stewart storage bench were the colour closest to the floor so the mat should have this colour running through it as well.

Kitchen Bench WM

It was the perfect choice!

I painted several coats of green as well as around the edges of the mat and it looked a million times better just as a blank canvas.

With the olive oil bottles officially banished, I had to decide on a pattern.

Easier said than done.

I looked at MANY rugs on Pinterest and eventually came to the realization that I didn’t want to have to measure anything or use a stencil.

The solution? Random stripes.

Kitchen Rug Supplies

I remembered reading about Scotch Blue Delicate Surfaces Tape on House of Smiths and decided to try it for my first time painting stripes. The lighter adhesive was perfect for creating stripes without waiting forever for the green to dry.

Once the base colour was dry to the touch I laid out my stripes and then labelled the tape with the colour I would use for each section.

I used a foam brush, alternating green (no painting required), teal, and a custom mix of teal and sea foam blue. Two coats and it was time for the big reveal.

The tape peeled off without any damage to the paint. I removed it while the paint was still wet. I have since used it for a few Silhouette projects as an alternative to transfer tape and officially love it!

After leaving it to dry for the afternoon, the last step was to spray the mat with several coats of acrylic protectant since it would be used in front of the sink. Again, I used what I had on hand – Krylon’s Crystal Clear.

I am able to wipe the mat without worrying about the paint finish. I have scrubbed it a few times without any cracking or discolouration.

Rug Vertical WM

It wasn’t until I loaded the dishwasher that I discovered there may have been a subliminal influence on my colour choices. The design on my dishwasher tab storage container is almost an identical colour palette.

Kitchen Rug Inspiration Colours

This mat was the missing piece in our kitchen decor.

Now we I finally have something comfortable to stand on while doing dishes that does not swallow everything that falls on the floor. Lesson learned with a cheap shag carpet.

It ties the colour scheme together and adds a pop of fun to our tired cabinets and flooring.

Kitchen Rug After WM

Work with what you’ve got, right?

Thanks for sticking with me during my “hiatus”!  I took lots of photos this weekend so I hope to be back with another project later this week!

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P.S. Does anyone know what classifies something a mat versus a rug?

P.P.S. Check out a round-up of many of my green and teal kitchen DIY projects here.

I link up at: Serenity Now, I {Heart} Naptime, Under The Table And Dreaming, Nifty Thrifty Things, Simply Klassic Home, Home Stories A to Z, Craftomaniac, Skip To My Lou, Not JUST A Housewife, A Bowl Full Of Lemons, Alderberry Hill, I Should Be Mopping The Floor, A Diamond In The Stuff, Creatively Living, The Winthrop Chronicles, Clean & Scentsible, Oopsey Daisy, Lil’ Luna, Someday Crafts, Live.Laugh.Rowe, The 36th Avenue, aka design, House of Hepworths, 52 Mantels, Thrifty Decorating, Crafty Scrappy Happy, How To Nest For Less, Tatertots & Jello, The Grant Life, It’s Overflowing, Lolly Jane, Too Much Time, Six Sisters’ Stuff, Positively Splendid, My {Re}purposed Life, Unrefined By Design, Just Us Four, Liz Marie Blog,and The Crafted Sparrow


  1. Great job Claire! I love how it turned out and those colours are beautiful.

  2. Hey Claire! You paint wizard you! Another amazing transformation! I much prefer the stripes to the tacky bottles on there earlier. I hope your trip to the cottage was restful and that these early autumn days are full of teaching and/or crafting!!

  3. Sounds like a lot of work but the result is beautiful.

  4. Looks great! Love that it matches the JA container! :)

  5. It looks lovely Claire! I love the colour scheme! It looks so energetic and fun! I really must get to some painting projects that I need to tackle. Hope your week is going great so far! Angie xo

  6. Very cute mat! I love stripes too. Isn't it interesting how you can tell which patterns or colours you are really drawn to when they keep popping up in projects, pinterest files, etc. I can see a pattern in so many of my things as well and sometimes have to push myself in a different direction or figure out how to work something new in. Looking forward to seeing your fall vignette and porch!

  7. The painted mat is such a GREAT idea! They are usually all so ugly.


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