Recently, our youth space needed a little makeover.

I guess it’s just what happens when you’ve got hundreds of teenagers running around multiple times a week: stuff starts to fall apart, decorative items get broken or go missing, and things just start to feel… a little run down. Our space needed some revamping. So I started brainstorming some solutions and updates.

The easiest way to bring some new life and coziness to our space, I decided, would be to invest in some cool wall art.

Two complications, though:

  1. IT NEEDED TO BE MULTIPURPOSE. We do youth ministry in a space that is also utilized by other ministries and events. So whatever I hung on the walls needed to appeal to more than just teenagers.
  2. WE DIDN’T HAVE MUCH OF A BUDGET. This wasn’t something we had planned for in our budget. But it was necessary. And buying wall art can be expensive. Boo.

So I made my own! And it was so easy. Even if you don’t have a single artistic bone in your body, you can do this. I promise.

Please observe… the magic of splatter painting.

26e2You know how to throw paint around, right? Yeah. That’s what I thought.

26e4So here’s what you do.

Gather up all the stuff from the shopping list over on the right. If you want to go crazy, you can even get a bunch of students to come help you. (But, just a heads up, get teenagers involved and you’ll be peeling paint out of your hair for days.) Go outside. Lay down your tarp. And start flinging paint.

Told you it was easy.

A few practical tips.

  • Use different canvas sizes. I made 3 medium sized canvases for our 3 identically sized classrooms, a big one for a fourth classroom, and a set of three for the wall above our “welcome” counter.  
  • My favorite technique: lay the canvas flat on the ground, then stand up and drop blobs of paint directly out of the bottle. That’s how I got the big round splattery blob effect. Then, to disperse the paint a bit, get your face right next to the canvas and blow in different directions. I know it sounds stupid, but just try it.
  • My other favorite technique: stand the canvas up on one edge, pour paint along the top edge, and let gravity do the rest. You can help the process by blowing some more in the direction you want the paint to travel.
  • One more favorite technique: stick your thumb and first two fingers in a cup filled with paint. Then flick your fingers at the canvas. That’s how I got the smaller random splatters. It’s really fun. But it will definitely ruin your nailpolish. Sad.
  • Don’t use two different paint colors. Or, at least, don’t use them both simultaneously. If you have two different colors of wet paint, they will mix and look gross. If you want to use multiple colors, I’d recommend waiting until the first color is completely dry before moving on to your second color.


So if you need to breathe a little new life into your youth space for the new school year… try this. We’re really happy with it. It’s pretty cheap, it looks cool, and it’s hard to screw up. And now that we’ve hung these babies up around the building, our space feels much cozier.

How about you? What kinds of inexpensive decor solutions have you come up with for your youth space?