An easy-to-make addition to the front door, this festive doormat is perfect for last-minute Fourth of July decorating. The technique calls for little more than a basic doormat, paint, tape, and our downloadable star-stencil template. For best results, use a sturdy, coir doormat (available at hardware stores), which will withstand the elements and a lot of foot traffic, so it can be used year after year.
Martha Stewart Living Television
Download and print the star-stencil template, or create your own. Trace the template onto a manila folder or lightweight cardboard, and cut out three star shapes. Create a rectangular box on the doormat using painter's tape. Use 2-inch low-tack tape to make a side border. Place the tape vertically and flush to the edge. Measure 6 inches from the top and bottom on each side; mark with pencil. Position tape horizontally along these measurements. (You should now have a taped-off box. You'll need to adjust the measurements, depending upon the size of your mat.)
Once the tape is affixed, position the stars on the mat. Find the center point, and place the first start on it. Place the remaining two stars 1 1/2 inches to either side of the center star. Tack them in place with straight pins. (Again, the spacing will depend on the size of your mat.)
Make a mixture of 1 pint of blue oil paint to 1 tablespoon paint thinner. Lightly dab and rub the paint into the mat. (It's better to do two light coats than one heavy one.) Let dry for a couple of hours. Apply a second coat, and once the paint has dried, remove the tape.
To create the stripes, place a strip of 2-inch tape along the bottom and top of the blue rectangle. Place additional tape along the bottom and top of the mat, flush with the edge. In the space remaining, paint the stripes red. Let dry, and apply a second coat. When dry, peel off tape, and remove the stars.