In this post: Blue and white decor is one of the most popular color combos. This DIY chinoiserie paper craft is an easy affordable way to add some to your home.⇒
Did you ever try to buy a chinoiserie vase in a color other than blue and white?
It’s nearly impossible.
Trust me on this, because I’ve been looking for one in pink and white and it’s like searching for a needle in a haystack. Occasionally you can find something in green or even more rare, black or red.
But if you switch the search to blue and white there are countless variations in every size and shape and ranging through every single price point.
The truth is, blue and white is one of the most popular color combinations that people use to decorate their homes.
This is ever more true when it comes to classic decor because there’s something so crisp and refreshing about blue and white. It can be interpreted across many design styles from English manor to cottage to farmhouse. And, of course, it works perfectly with my preferred style, a modern version of French Country.
Today I’m joining with my blogger friends to bring you the next installment of our home decor blog hops. We’re focusing this time on DIYs and crafts and you’ll find a fun surprise at the end of this post. You’ll also find all the other posts below, so be sure to check them all out!
But first let’s look at blue and white decor ideas and how I’ve used this combo in my home.
Blue and White Decor
I sometimes feel that using blue and white decor is a direction you have to commit to. It’s such a distinct look that it can seem intimidating if you’re not sure you want to live with it all the time.
But in reality there are ways to make a bold blue and white statement with pieces that can easily be switched out.
On our patio above, I used pillows and planters to deliver the chinoiserie look I was after. The inexpensive outdoor rug was the unifying piece that brought the whole look together. These accents are mixed with whites and neutrals used in the more dominant furniture pieces. This makes it super easy to transform the look whenever the mood strikes.
Another way to bring blue and white into your home is to use it in setting a table. This provides an opportunity to go all in without making overall decor changes.
The approach would be similar to decorating a room using classic blue and white patterns. A toile tablecloth, needlepoint pillows, chinoiserie vases and similarly patterned plates all blend wonderfully together. You could also try ticking stripes or gingham checks for a subtle almost textural effect.
What goes a long way to underscoring the beauty of the pattern mix is adding plenty of fresh crisp solids. My rooms are based around lots of white in the major pieces and then solids in blues make great accent pieces that help punctuate the blue in the patterned textiles.
The quintessential component in a blue and white room is without a doubt a chinoiserie vase or urn. Yet many of these items can be quite costly so you may want to build your collection over time.
Or there’s another simple and affordable way to add chinoiserie to the decorative items in your home.
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The concept is to buy inexpensive galvanized vessels and decoupage them with blue and white prints. This is infinitely less expensive than buying chinoiserie vases and there are endless patterns to choose from.
Let me start by saying I’m not much of a crafter so this really had to be a super easy project. As an example, I bought a glue gun maybe 15 years ago and I’ve never taken it out of the package!
So we’re talking SUPER easy…
The first step is to buy a few galvanized pieces and I opted for pitchers to use as flower vases. I already had the smaller one, so I found a taller one for compositional interest.
I also made sure I had Mod Podge and a couple of brushes to apply the other components.
Next I selected the patterns that would be used for my decoupage and this is where I spent the most time. A much more efficient way to do this would be to order them online but I didn’t leave enough time to complete the post.
So instead I drove from store to store and discovered all the shops that have closed in my neighborhood!
What I was looking for was printed paper napkins and I’ve linked several below in the resource list.
I also chose to paint the pitchers first to be sure the silver didn’t show through the pattern. I used white chalk paint which I applied with a medium paint brush and I had to remind myself to skip perfection as this would just be an under layer. I made sure the paint was dry before moving to the next step.
Now, I certainly didn’t invent this technique and I’ve seen it used on everything from pumpkins to flower pots, but everyone finds their own method of working.
Given the angles of the vessels and the curve of their bodies, I chose not to worry about matching the pattern. If I wound up with an overall toile look that would be good enough for me.
I separated the napkins into a single layer, applied the Mod Podge to sections of the pitcher with the sponge brush and applied the pattern in long vertical strips.
- It will rip. Just patch up the holes with more pattern.
- Don’t be afraid to overlap. It will all blend in later.
- Leave a little extra paper at the top and bottom edges and fold it over the end for a clean finish.
- Add more Mod Podge on top. It will dry clear. I promise.
This is a very forgiving project and no matter what you do, you should be able to complete it. I’m a total klutz and my fingers kept sticking to the pattern and ripping it. It doesn’t matter. Just carry on.
The finished result is about as uplifting as you can ask for and I was delighted when all was done. It seemed to be crying out for tulips and I was happy to oblige and I love the sunny centerpiece on my kitchen table.
Does this mean I’ll never buy porcelain chinoiserie again? Of course not.
But how nice it is to have an option for additional pieces when I decide to decorate a room in blue and white decor!
To get the look, click on the items below for direct links to the products. Where actual items were no longer available, I’ve provided similar options. If an item is out of stock but may be restocked, I left it on the list.
(This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.)
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