Secret Thoughts

Black and white of Betty (from the eyes up) holding the paint by number canvas.

Sounds kind of juicy, doesn’t it? Well… get ready for my thoughts about my secret Paint by Number project. Woo Hoo! Now just what were you expecting? You know my blog is rated G. Come on now. Let’s get started!

It was hard to get started on my project. When I looked at the bazillion, tiny spaces to paint, each with a minuscule number that required coke bottle glasses to see, I felt overwhelmed. And I was working on my dollhouse and well, living a life. I was also concerned about the logistics. Where would I paint? I didn’t want to have to be in the basement; yet, I didn’t want to have to set it up and put it all away frequently. Eventually though, I was concerned that if I didn’t get started soon, the paints would dry out, and I’d be up that famous creek.

So, got started I did. I decided to use blue painter’s tape to adhere the canvas to a foam board (from the Dollar Tree). This was a great decision logistically. I could paint at the kitchen table, the action center of our home, and easily put the project away on top of the refrigerator between sessions. In addition, having the canvas on a foam board allowed me to turn the canvas easily should I need a different angle when painting.

I learned after the fact that some people iron the canvas before starting. This is probably a good idea; although, not critical as mine turned out okay even without this step. I had wondered, when starting out, if I would need better brushes than what came with the kit. However, the three brushes worked just fine; I did use the tiniest brush most of the time.

The great debate in PBN (Paint by Number) Facebook groups is whether to paint by sections or in numerical order. I chose numerical order. Less washing of the brushes, and it gave me a sense of progress. During my sessions, I would often listen to podcasts, and I found it to be very relaxing. It helps to be patient, to not think about how much is left to paint, and to focus on painting the current section in an exacting manner as much as possible.

Close up of Paint by Number with green sky and white tree.

All went well with my PBN until the end. The last two colors (19 and 20) were mislabeled. So, I painted the white sky, green and the green tree, white. I should have noticed the issues earlier, but I didn’t. I follow the rules. Right off that proverbial cliff. My first indication that something was amiss was when the tree in the background was hardly visible. The second indication was that my fall scene looked like it was under a serious tornado warning. Not just a watch, mind you.

So, I repainted the green, white and the white, green. Then, I decided to give the tree in the background similar colors to the other trees. And then I painted over the stark white sky with a blended warm white color. In the end, I was pleased with how the painting came out, and I have the bonus of knowing, even though it is a Paint by Number production, mine is unique in all the land.

I decided to mount my masterpiece on the Dollar Tree foam board, the same board I had used throughout the project. My PBN’s home is now in our beloved travel trailer, displayed on the bottom side of our Murphy Bed which is visible anytime our bed is up and put away. I had seen on Facebook, many put beautiful pictures from a place called “Limitless Walls” on the underside of the Murphy bed. I very much like how these look, but I like my display better. Plus, I only spent $1. For the foam board. Which I used for two purposes.

View inside travel trailer with paint by number on the wall.

Would I do another Paint by Number? You bet I would. However, I want to add, “Not for a while.” I would also like to add that when and if I do another paint by number project and I take a photo after each session, I will stand the painting up vertically when taking the photo. I took all the photos with the painting laying on the table which skews the view. I appreciate all the compliments on the painting’s slideshow despite my rookie mistake with my amateur endeavor. Y’all are good people.

One other reason why I don’t want to do another PBN right away is that I have lots of other interests. My family. My hobbies. Walking. Traveling. And oh yea, I got that dollhouse waiting for me. And that my dear reader, paints the scene for some upcoming posts.

Close up of Paint by Number in travel trailer.


  1. Great job, Betty! Who knows, maybe your little mistake will make the painting worth that much more in the future.😉
    Personally, I don’t think I have the patience for PBN. But life by numbers would be nice.
    As you say, enjoy your day!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great read! You have a penchant for creativity and determination! I think I’d have been extremely frustrated with that color mix-up and may have tossed it aside. The end result is beautiful and fits the space perfectly! I look forward to hearing about your future projects. Have a happy Saturday!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, I was frustrated with the color mix-up, so I set it aside for about 3 days. Once I “recovered”, I went back to it and finished it up. Some areas were painted three times! Thanks for your compliments, and I hope you have a happy Saturday, too!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I believe it came out even better once you added your own personal touch. I would not have the patience for such a project. I used to do hook rugs but lost interest after I completed several. Maybe some day I will get back to them. Glad you found a unique place to display it. I looked around our “house” and sadly could not find a wall where I could display such a painting. Now, on to the dollhouse. I for one can’t wait to see how that turns out. Have a great weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I was happy with how the painting finally turned out. And now I am back to the dollhouse. Slow and steady wins the race, like a turtle, right? 🙂 Enjoy the day!


  4. Well done, Betty! Your painting looks beautiful. I hope you consider sharing this post by linking up with my Weekend Coffee Share. The link is open until midnight Sunday night. Everyone is welcome to join in any and every week.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You certainly accomplish a lot! Your paint by number looks great above the Murphy bed. I love when people decorate with items they have created or personally collected, giving a glimpse into their personalities.
    I winced when I thought of your last two colors being mislabeled. It made me think of when my husband spent the afternoon making a seafood lasagna we were greatly looking forward to. The recipe had an error in it which in retrospect we should have realized, but it made it inedible. I’m glad you were able to rescue your hard work. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! Yes, I am glad I was able to rescue it. It took me a few days to “get over it.” Too bad about the seafood lasagna. I am sure you tried again and succeeded. I have to laugh at myself for how I didn’t notice the mislabeling. In retrospect, why would a sky be green? Thanks for reading, and enjoy your day!


  6. It turned out lovely and is perfect in the travel trailer! I like your process, too. It reminds me of doing needlepoint – do I go row by row or color by color is always a question I ask myself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much. Now that you mention it, both needlepoint and paint by number have similar characteristics. And both require patience! Thanks for reading, and have a good day tomorrow!

      Liked by 1 person

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