Sitting Pretty: An Easy DIY Painted Picnic Blanket


If I could eat every meal outside, I would. I’m somewhat of a picnic enthusiast, and love finding or making new accessories to create a really enjoyable outdoor dining experience. This painted picnic blanket is an easy DIY, and you can make it in any color, or with any pattern you choose.

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Before packing your favorite foods for an outdoor meal, you can make this painted picnic blanket to match your outdoor pillows (this watercolor cactus is at the top of my list this season), or in your favorite colors. I kept my plaid version super simple, and I love it! Because I use dye rather than fabric paint, the blanket remains soft and smooth, retaining its original texture. The painted-on dye also has the beautiful quality of watercolor and is so easy to use. With just a few easy materials and steps, you can make your own painted picnic blanket, too!  

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I’ve been waiting for picnic season all winter and am so excited to spend more time outside and to create perfect, simple meals. I like a thrown-together picnic. I grab an assortment of finger foods: rosemary sea salt crackers, citrus crackers, peppered salami, spreadable cheese, cornichons, chips and salsa, spiced nuts, whole fruit, and chocolate. It isn’t a picnic for me without chocolate, and this 64% dark sea salt bar is my very favorite.

I also love picking some fun sodas. Blood orange and lemon prickly pear are winners for their pretty color as well as their taste.

With a big woven bag filled with food and drinks, a great picnic blanket and some pillows if we are close to home, I can set up in the shade, watch the kids play, and everyone can eat and chat until content. If my meat isn’t pre-sliced, I add a serrated knife and cutting board to the bag. I also love having a stash of melamine plates, bowls, and cups on hand for outdoor use without the worry of breakage. A wood and metal tray can add stability for the drinks and bottles, which is especially helpful if there are kids involved.

Something about sitting outside, feeling the breeze, enjoying good food and friends makes me feel entirely at home in my life. I appreciate the opportunity to experience a variety of simple pleasures. Making my own painted picnic blanket adds to the fun.

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So, are you ready to make your own picnic blanket?

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A canvas drop cloth
  • Jacquard Dye-na-flow fabric dye
  • A paintbrush
  • A ruler

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Step 1: Choose the color(s) of dye you would like for your project and pour a small amount onto a plastic plate.WorldMarket_PlaidPicnicBlanketDIY (17)

Step 2: Decide on a pattern for your painted picnic blanket. If you want to do a simple plaid, chances are you can follow the creases in the canvas drop cloth to get started!WorldMarket_PlaidPicnicBlanketDIY (18)

Step 3Using the dye as you would watercolor, paint thin, straight lines onto the canvas. Use a ruler as needed to keep the lines even, but don’t expect them to be perfect. They’ll have a fun, handmade look with slight variation.

Cover the drop cloth with your pattern, then let the dye dry for a few minutes.
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Step 4Iron on high to set the dye and flatten out the picnic blanket.
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Step 5Cover the drop cloth with your pattern, then let the dye dry for a few minutes.Pack your painted picnic blanket with all the other goodies you want and enjoy picnic season!

Ready to get your picnic packed? Shop our Picnic Baskets and Totes, and fill it up with perfectly sized mini bites.


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