50 Ways to Decorate With One $10 Hardware Store Staple

updated Jul 17, 2020
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(Image credit: Chinasa Cooper)

Drop cloths are sturdy fabric, come in a basic neutral shade, and are readily available for little money at the hardware store. Need I say more? Okay, then I will. Drop cloths look remarkably similar to linen, so you can get that relaxed, coastal, or rustic vibe for less. Check out these 50+ projects to get the look…

(Image credit: Nellie Bellie)

Floorcloths & Rugs

  1. A hand-printed rug, done by Poppytalk, with a Sharpie!
  2. I love this super colorful painted and sponge-pattern rug that Nellie Bellie made. (image directly above)
  3. Home Depot did a version in the style of a zebra hide rug. They used a dropcloth and sealed it with polyurethane.
  4. This rug was made from some heavy fabric, and backed with canvas to make it stronger and more durable. There’s no sewing involved, as you can see over at Vintage Revivals.
  5. Because they are so affordable, they make great rugs for outdoors as well. This brightly painted one is from Lowe’s.
(Image credit: Lilyfield Life)

Furniture Coverings & Upholstery

  1. This woven fabric chair above, from Lilyfield Life, elevates canvas to something more elegant.
  2. If have more traditional Parsons style dining chairs, take a look at these slipcovers from House of Fifty.
  3. This upholstered headboard from DIY Showoff looks like something you’d easily find in Pottery Barn or Restoration Hardware.
  4. Here’s a basic skirted ottoman slipcover you can make with help from Sewing with Rascals.
  5. In what might be the easiest project ever, just throw a cloth over your furniture for an instant slipcover. Japanese store owner Hitoshi Uchida’s home was featured on The Selby.
  6. DIY grain sack kitchen barstool cushions from HGTV made from canvas and some acrylic paint.
(Image credit: Flower Patch Farmgirl)

Window Treatments & Curtains

  1. Flower Patch Farmgirl added a delicate lace trim to make a simple and sweet curtain for her bathroom (photo above).
  2. Bluet & Clover shares a tutorial for making roman shades with ribbon border.
  3. If you like the look of smocking, Days of Chalk and Chocolate shows you how to add the detail to regular curtains.
  4. Probably the greatest printed window shade of all time, which looks like an airmail envelope and was featured on Brooklyn Limestone.
  5. A stenciled valance with pleats, seen on Hometalk.
(Image credit: Deliciously Organized)

Table & Bed Linens

  1. This console table skirt in Carlee’s entryway is a simple problem solver that can hide a multitude of organizational sins.
  2. This tailored drop cloth bedskirt from Brooklyn Limestone is a basic standard.
  3. Check out this amazing bed canopy from the Shelter Island beach home of designer Steve Schappacher and Rhea White, seen on Library of Design.
  4. A ruler graces this painted table runner from Country Living, but could be adapted to be many other images or patterns.
  5. Due to its thickness, a drop cloth makes a good substrate for stencilling patterns before using as a tablecloth or runner. Check out this design from Pretty Handy Girl.
  6. The skies the limit when it comes to pretty pillow projects.
  7. Zig zag stitches finish off these placemats from SAS Interiors.
  8. Baste on some of your old doilies onto a canvas tablecloth to class it up, from Idea Mag, via Babble.
(Image credit: House Tweaking)

Art & Wall Decor

  1. A DIY banner from House Tweaking that is hung with the help of grommets.
  2. We show you how to scale up & paint a large canvas wall mural or art banner last Halloween.
  3. Decorate the outside of your house with this porch banner, like this one from Condo Blues.
  4. Ana White made a linen-esque pinboard for a dining room.
  5. This wreath, made from bunched up canvas by Number Fifty-Three, can be used beyond the regular holiday season.
  6. Designer Nancy Hadley stretched some on canvas to make a triptych for a bedroom during her stint on American Dream Builders.
(Image credit: Home and Harmony)

Other Decorative Details

  1. Home and Harmony layered some lace over a drop cloth to create this pretty sink skirt.
  2. Add grommets and paint to a canvas and come up with this classic striped shower curtain. Tutorial by Dana Made It.
  3. Line a wire basket with a drop cloth to create a planter like this one from Liz Marie.
  4. Lowe’s came up with a bunch of possible projects, including this drop cloth lamp.
  5. Home Depot dyed some of the natural canvas to create fun and festive bunting.
  6. An easy, cheap memo board from Emily Clark.
  7. Old Windmill Farm did a Pottery Barn knock off and recovered a lampshade to look like grain sack cloth.
(Image credit: Joyfully Home)

Kids Decor

  1. Kat from Joyfully Home shows this no-sew teepee for her son Caleb’s bedroom.
  2. Make a catch-all canvas tote bag to store toys and games when not in use. Jennifer’s Mentionables has a tutorial.
  3. A cloth canopy covers IKEA bunk beds in Christy Bright’s son’s room, and it is totally awesome.
  4. How cute is this polka dot tablecloth that Design Improvised for a birthday party.
  5. Such a good idea! A painted growth chart from Green Scene Mom.
  6. Or, a memory blanket featuring your kids’ artwork, idea courtesy of The Crafty Crow.
(Image credit: DIY Network)

Outdoor Decor

  1. DIY Network shows you how to make a privacy curtain using pipe conduit and canvas.
  2. Martha Stewart made a couple of different projects, including a colorful sun shade for the backyard, and an outdoor shower curtain.
  3. Dip dyed drop cloth curtains for the outdoor porch, from Things Made New.
  4. This hammock, seen on Fancy, looks a lot like a drop cloth made with grommets and strung with chain.
  5. Ellen of Creative Passage cleverly and resourcefully redid her outdoor umbrella using drop cloth.
  6. Outdoor cushions from Simply Swider.
  7. A fun and colorful lawn movie screen from Prairie Hive.

And lastly, if it’s that time of year, don’t forget all these:

→ DIY Holiday Decorating Ideas: 7 Ways to Use Drop Cloths