Turn an inexpensive carpet runner into a customized extra-wide welcome mat decorated in your favorite paint colors. Use our free downloadable pattern.
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Print out the four-part pattern, trim along the dashed lines, and assemble. Cover the entire design front and back with packing tape to make it rigid. Cut out the shaded designs with a crafts knife and a straightedge. Then cut around the outside line to form a 12-in square.
Use a carpenter's square and a utility knife to trim the ends of the runner square -- the long sides should be 40 inches long.
Apply 1-in painter's tape in a band around all four edges of the runner. Use the pattern as a guide to position two strips of tape that divide the runner into three 12-in-wide areas. Then center a 40-in-long piece of tape to create six 12-in squares.
Place the pattern in one of the squares and use a colored pencil to trace around the openings cut out of the pattern. If possible, coordinate the pencil colors with the paint colors -- they don't need to be exact. Repeat for the remaining squares.
Using a 1-inch sash brush, paint within the penciled lines to create the design. Repeat for the other five 12-in-square spaces on the runner.
After the last square is finished, remove all of the tape. Allow three days for the paint to dry before using. The porous rug will soak up a lot of paint. Use more paint to get bright colors or less paint for a subtle look. Store the leftover paint to refresh the designs when they become worn, dull, or damaged.