'Merica in Minutes: DIY Paint Stick Flag

With Memorial Day and Flag Day already in the books for 2016, it is time to get some patriotic decor up before the Fourth of July. Summer can be busy and DIY projects might take the back-burner to grilling out and enjoying some time on the lake. Not every craft project has to last into bonfire hours. 

For some quick American spirit, try your hand at making a paint stick flag. 

Supply List:

  • Hot glue gun or wood glue

  • 10 paint sticks

  • Red, white, and blue acrylic paint 

  • Drill

  • Sponge paint brushe(s)

  • Ruler or other straight edge

  • Pencil

I picked up all of the supplies I needed at Home Depot. I asked an employee at the paint center for the paint sticks and they gave them to me at no charge. Instead of getting the bottles of acrylic paint at a craft store, I got sample sizes of a more muted red and blue and a regular white. This allowed me to make this with a couple of other friends as well as have some leftover paint for future Fourth of July crafts. Either paint option is fine. 

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Choose two of the sticks to cut down to hold the flag together. You can either break them with your hands, saw them down, or use a strong pair of scissors. Set them aside. 

Layout 7 sticks in a horizontal row. Drill two small holes in the top stick to fit the twine through. You will want to make sure once the twine is knotted, it will not slip through the drilled holes. If power tools scare you, get your dad, hubby, or boyfriend to help, but I was able to handle this all of my own without mad drilling skills!

Group together the top 4 sticks and use the ruler or straight edge to draw a line at about 4.75 inches across. This will create the boundaries for the blue part of your flag.

Use a sponge paint brush to paint this section of these 4 sticks blue. To gain a more rustic effect, do not fully cover the sticks. If you get more than you would like on the sticks, you can always sand it down after its dry. If you want a more vibrantly-colored flag, you can select brighter shades of paint and fully cover the wood.

Next, alternate painting each stick red and white. Utilize the same painting technique you decided upon for consistency. Let the sticks dry. 

When the sticks are dry, turn them over, plus them together and prepare to glue the two smaller sticks to secure the flag together. Use either hot glue or wood glue. If you use wood glue, set a book or other heavy object on top of the flag while it dries.  

Once the glue is dry, string the twine in the drilled holes. I decided not to add stars, but you can buy either wooden stars and paint them white or get a star stencil. Either way, I think it looks cute! Maybe someday I'll add on some stars!

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