Here’s how to make cool concrete wall art decor for your walls. Create a triptych of wall tiles, MCM style with cement!
I am a big fan of modern design and yet, other than my furniture, I have very little modern decor. So, I figured it was time to change that. I wanted to create a sort of triptych for wall art and have been wanting to use concrete or cement as a canvas which essentially became wall tile decor.
Since I love the atomic shapes and retro colors I have seen in Midcentury Modern wall paintings, I used that style as my inspiration. It also helps that I’m a cat lover and that black cat was iconic during the Mid Century Mod period. This ended up being really easy to make and I think the contrast of the brighter paint with the dark grey colored cement wall tiles is really pretty.
Pocket Guide to Concrete & Cement Mixes For Crafts
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DIY Difficulty Level | Easy
Materials For Making Mid Century Modern Wall Art
- Flexible plastic square container
- Cement All, Rapid Set
- Cement colorant -powder
- Empty water bottle
- Latex/nitrile gloves
- Plastic cup
- Disposable mixing bowl
- Disposable measuring cup
- Vegetable oil spray
- Transfer paper-white
- Sharpie oil based paint markers
- Flat head screw driver
DIY Concrete Wall Art Tutorial Steps
Step 1 | Prep The Concrete Wall Art Design
Decide what design you will paint or draw onto your tile. If you want to prepare your design first on a computer, rather than hand draw, then in Step 7, you can print it out and use the white transfer paper to transfer it to the tile.
Otherwise, you will just draw your design straight onto the tile, no need to use transfer paper between or pre-draw it and use the transfer paper- again, the drawing will be for Step 7.
Step 2 | Prep The Colorant
Mix up the powder colorant. You’ll do the mixing in the disposable bottle but first, lightly mix 12oz of water with about 1/8 cup of colorant powder in the disposable measuring cup. You can add more or less colorant than this, depending on how dark you want your wall tiles to be. The charcoal colorant stains everything, so this is why you are using a disposable measuring cup.
You’ll have more liquid colorant than you’ll need for this project, so you’ll be able to use the left over for another project. After combining it in the measuring cup, pour it into a water bottle. Shake it to mix up the coloring. Make sure to re-shake this well just before adding it to the cement because the colorant will keep separating from the water.
Step 3 | Mix The Cement and Colorant
You’ll need about 2 scoops of the cement to make one tile if you are using the 6×6 container and want it 1/2″ thick. Add the colorant to the mix little by little. There should be no lumps and it should look like a thick milkshake.
Step 4 | Lubricate The DIY Concrete Wall Art Mould
Spray the vegetable oil into the container, then pour in the cement.
Step 5 | Create Hanging Hole
After letting it sit about 15-20 minutes, create the hole for hanging. Just flip over the tile and mark out the center, and about 1″ from the top.
Take the screwdriver/chisel and scrape away some space at the center. Make sure the top of the hole is flat to better hold a nail or screw. Make the hole about 1/2″ wide. In case your hole isn’t perfectly centered, this will give you flexibility when hanging it.
Step 6 | De-mould The Concrete
After about an hour, you can de-mould the cement. Flip it over onto a soft towel to protect it and gently shake and tap, it should slide right out of the mould. Be careful with the residue from the vegetable spray from the container. If it gets on your fingers and you touch the cement, you will get a darker oil spot where you have touched it. I got a spot on one of my tiles, but I don’t mind it.
Step 7 | Transfer Concrete Wall Art To Tile
Once you have all three tiles, go ahead and transfer the design to the tile. Just tape the transfer paper to your tile, then tape your design on top of that. Use a pen to trace over your design. When finished, remove the transfer paper and the paper print out.
Final Step | Paint The Cement Tile
Paint the tiles using the Sharpie paint markers.