Barnwood Mural

There is no place like home for the holidays. Songs have been written about that very fact. Together with our dog, cat, and infant son, my husband and I recently made the cross-country trek so that we could enjoy the holidays at home with our family. Because we travel with our pets and have to take so many items along for our son, we chose to make the 1,000 mile journey by car.

Despite the cramped quarters in the cab of the pickup truck and the long hours on the road, the trip was quite pleasurable. I always enjoy watching the passing scenery, moving from pine trees to mountains to the fertile farmland of the Midwest. I especially like to see barns all along our route. They are particularly prominent in the heartland, rising along with the farmsteads out of the surrounding fields of corn and soybeans.

Two barns really caught my eye on this trip. Each of them boasted gigantic murals on at least one side of them. The barns had been treated like giant canvases by the artist who had painted them. He or she had provided great detail in both the Statue of Liberty and the American Gothic murals, so much so that it was difficult to determine whether they had actually been hand-painted. Those barns were truly iconic American relics, providing pleasure to passers-by.

You can recreate these masterpieces with the reclaimed barnwood furniture in your home. Begin by purchasing a coffee table or a dining room table. Order the piece without finish on its top surface. Either hire an artist or call out your inner Picasso. Decide on a design, pencil your template onto the table, and begin painting. Add a durable clear topcoat when you are completed to seal in the art. You are set to display your own American icon for visitors. Your table will add a very colorful, special, unique element to your living room or dining room. The artwork can be enjoyed for many generations to come, not unlike the giant murals on the big barns in Iowa.

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