Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY

Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIYI don’t think I’ve ever received so many requests for a DIY before!! I’m so glad. I had so much fun working on this project and am so excited to share it with you today!

As you know I am VERY passionate about wallpaper. But wallpaper is a big commitment. Something you aren’t ready for such a commitment and that’s when something inexpensive and easy to execute like this comes in. Albeit this a little time consuming, so you want to make sure you really want it!

Here’s how I did a WHOLE room of gold foil cactus “wallpaper” in just one week!

Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY This DIY is SUPER simple.

First, you’ll need a Krylon Gold Leafing Pen. They produce a beautiful gold foiled finish!

Next you’ll beed to make stencils of a very simple, abstract design. Don’t choose any shape with any more detail than this cactus. I used craft foam and cardstock to make my stencils. I loved both, but the foam was maybe a little bit better. It’s good to have a lot of extra stencils because if they get any excess paint on them they have to be set aside to dry or they can make your wall messy! I was swapping back and forth the entire time.

One of the most time consuming parts of this project was actually choosing the design for me. I spent about a week deliberating before I committed to the cactus design.

Next, start at either the bottom or the top (haha! I learned this the hard way) of the room and work your way around, fill a row spacing the design in a staggered pattern, like polka dots.

If you frequently step back to look at the design from far away you can make sure your spacing is consistent. I chose to just “eyeball” my design. It’s not perfectly spaced and I honestly don’t care. If you want it to be absolutely perfect I would go through each wall and mark each spot with a small piece of blue painters tape so you can have a guide. You can even measure if you want to, but I didn’t do that.

Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY Once you start I recommend working for 1-2 hours per day, or taking breaks each 1-2 hours. Depending on how much space you are covering it can be a very time consuming project. My four walls took about ten hours split between myself and two other people helping me.

You’ll also want to have the best ventilation you can. If you can open a window or at least get a fan going, do it. These pens are fumey.

Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY Most wallpapered rooms cost around two to three thousand dollars when you include the installation. This DIY cost under twenty dollars! I used three pens to complete our four walls.

Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY Gold Cactus Wallpaper DIY Let me know if you have any questions!! This project ties with my fiber art for most time consuming, but also my absolute favorite projects I’ve made in my home so far. xx- Elsie

Credits// Author and Photography: Elsie Larson.  Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

  • I’m going to do this on two walls of my brow studio. I think I’ll paint 2 accent walls a grey and use a copper pen for my stencil! I love this idea and it will perfectly fit the aesthetic of my little studio, so excited! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Hi Elsie,
    Really ineradicable! I like this innovative look.
    Thanks for sharing such beautiful creative ideas here

  • Please share the stuffed Cacti DIY soon! I have been looking everywhere for one for our baby girls nursery!

  • Of course!! Just follow the advice I give here and make it your own. You can TOTALLY do it!
    xx- Elsie

  • I didn’t measure them (and they aren’t perfect) but I tried to keep them fairly consistent.
    xx- Elsie

  • I used scissors but you could also use an exacto!
    xx- Elsie

  • They’re DIY. We’ll be sharing the project here soon! 🙂
    xx- Elsie

  • Beautiful! I want to know as well where did you buy the cactus? The “plant cactus”?

  • Ok how cool is that wall??!! And the best part of it is that you did it all by yourself and even better, it`s“so easy that I could do the same 😀
    Thank you soooo much for sharing!!
    xx Caroline

  • Hi Elsie! What did you used to cut out the stencil? xacto knife?

  • Love this room… Can we talk about the fabric potted cactus for a minute? DIY please!

  • so beautiful! how do you make them so regular? how did you measure the distance between every cactus?
    amazing job! 🙂

  • I can’t believe you eyeballed this, because it looks so perfect!! So good!

  • Simple yet so lovely! Cactus and pineapple patterns seem to be in the spotlight right now and I’m loving it!

  • LOVE this! I scrolled through and didn’t see (forgive me if you already mentioned) – where did you get that amazing eye mirror? So freaking cool, I have the perfect spot for it, fearing it might be vintage! – Christina

  • Wow! This looks great. Having lived with yucky old wallpaper removal and its attendant work and mess, I just can’t commit to real wallpaper ever, even if I love the look. This is a PERFECT project for the wallpaper wary! Great post!

  • You have really inspired me! I love this wallpaper (link below) but not willing to part with $100s-$1000s!! Do you think I could achieve a similar result with the gold leaf pen you used, and a ruler? Any advice would be so appreciated, I’m only just getting into DIY!!

  • This looks really awesome and you described it to be very easily made. I love it!!

  • WOW!!!! What a great DIY! I was attracted to your blog post from an image I found on Bloglovin. I am totally obsessed with Cacti and love what you did on your walls! It is pretty impressive that you eye balled the whole thing!!! I wonder how many cacti you actually got on those walls!? 🙂 Thanks for sharing! Your blog is adorbs! ^_~

  • I honestly think I just love anything cactus related! Such a cute DIY! X

  • Love the idea! Looks so bright and airy and definitely not boring! Looking forward to seeing the full room tour.

  • I absolutely love how this turned out! We have a basement that doesn’t have any windows, so I want to try this to add a little something special to the space. Maybe something laundry related to make washing clothes seem more fun ha! Thanks for the tutorial!

    Do you know if the pens come in other colors too? Thanks!


  • Also an AZ native and totally agree with this! It’s making me appreciate my hometown even more!


  • Maybe make the designs on vinyl and cut them out and stick them on? If the gold works on the vinyl, the homemade stickers would come off super easy!


  • By a fireplace would look great!


  • This is amazing!!! I have to find a place to do this, or maybe some inspo for my next design client 🙂

  • Can’t believe it’s only a pencil and a stencil, hard work but it looks great and perfectly measured out.

  • Saw this all over Snapchat and couldn’t wait to see the tutorial! Love!

    Xx Taylor

  • WOW that turned out so great 🙂 that’s on my DIY dreams list for sure

  • We did make mistakes and painted over them and it takes 2 coats for perfect coverage in white, although we just did one (good enough).
    xx- Elsie

  • Thank you so much Anne!! I think choosing the right colors helps make it look more legit! Gold definitely helps!
    xx- Elsie

  • You can also get vinyl stickers on Etsy (or make them) to make an even more renter friendly pattern.
    xx- elsie

  • We totally made mistakes and we just painted over those and did them again!
    xx- Elsie

  • Yes, I think so. But the good thing about the project is when you get tired of it you can paint over it.
    xx- Elsie

  • There isn’t a texture (those are REALLY hard to stencil) and I used matte paint underneath.
    xx- Elsie

  • Thank you so much Daryn. The desert is definitely one of my top favorite inspirations!
    xx- Elsie

  • You can make one from looking at the photo I posted of my stencils. It’s a very simple abstract shape. All of mine are very slightly different and it didn’t matter at all!
    xx- Elsie

  • Thank you!!! 🙂 I think the design is a BIG part of that. That’s why it’s important to keep it super simple to stay consistent.


  • The results are stunning! It looks AMAZING, very fresh and, the most important, original and unique. And soooo cheap (important thing to consider!)

    It was worth it spending ten hours!

  • This looks amazing! And the cacti are delicate enough to fit perfectly to the surroundings!

  • Elsie, great wallpaper but for me the eye mirror just the most beautiful object! Did you make? And how? Thank you for your blog, love it! Anna xx

  • I love this! I’ve been trying to think of something to put on the back wall in our bedroom for so long, as it’s a little plain in there. I might have to give it a go!
    How easy do you reckon it would be to paint over the pen incase of any mistakes, or if I change my mind later on? I’m always worried about that since the people that lived here previous to us used black permanent marker on the wall, and after roughly 10 coats of paint, it still kept coming through!
    xo April | April Everyday

  • I am obsessed! This is a really amazing DIY. Plus, white and gold is always a great combination.

  • I’ve loved your other DIY wallpaper/stencil projects, but this is really pushing me to think about a design for our home! Your home and Instagram (and following Hygge and West) has made me so in love with wallpaper. We’re renting, so maybe I could do a tiny space with real removable paper, but we couldn’t afford much so this would be awesome! I’m hoping to this and/or your wall hanging for the wall at the head of our bed. I have the same goals for a peaceful space, and our bed is on the floor so it’s an awkward amount of wall to fill. Will definitely tag ABM on IG if I do!

  • Wow that is so neat! I think I’d make a mistake on one and it would annoy me forever!
    JH |

  • This is so adorable! It would be so cute in a nursery!

  • OMG!!! I totally want to do the same thing but … in my bathroom. Do you think that the ink will hold despite the moisture/humidity?

  • This is amazing. Is there any kind of texture on your wall or did you just paint it and then add the stencils?

  • Totally cute. I’ve been soo excited about how many DIYs you’ve done that are a nod to the desert life. Being an AZ native, I love when other people appreciate it as much as I do! :]

  • Hi! Your blog looks really cool! I love this DIY post. I’m not very good myself with art crafts but I’m going to try it for sure.
    Lots of love,
    Gara. xx

  • Well this room is Palm Springs theme so my other choices where a palm tree outline (maybe too detailed though), a palm leaf outline (too similar to another wallpaper I have in the room next door) and little retro starbursts!

    I will say. I feel like the curved lines would be easier than a lot of hard edges!

    xx- Elsie

  • I really appreciate that and I LOVE your hashtag. That’s a good life motto!
    xx- Elsie

  • This is so cool! I never would have thought of it

  • This turned out amazing!! I curious what your other Ideas were for the stencil! I’d love to do something similar in my powder bath. Time to start sketching !

  • Wow this looks time consuming but so so good! I love it! x


  • The pens will not wash off of a wall, but you could easily paint over it. That would probably work well in a rental, much better than traditional wall paper anyway (which you’d have to scrape off and then repaint). But every rental agreement is different so be mindful of what yours is before you paint. 🙂


  • What an incredible DIY! I’ll definitely have to give it a try! Could you post the stencil you used as well? Thanks! 🙂

  • Oh this is just too cute!

    I would LOVE to invite you to share this with my viewers at Cooking and Crafting with J & J:

    Also, you can share this with my Recipes, Crafts, Tips and Tricks Facebook group:

  • It’s great! You just need a lot of patience! 🙂

    Check out my latest post about YSL Beauty tapping Zoë Kravitz as their new brand ambassador and their intentions behind the move.


  • I’d never be able to tell it was just drawn on the wall! 🙂

  • Very cute. Would this be something you could do in a rental–how would you get it off? Could you just paint over it?

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  • This is SO gorgeous – when I saw this post pop up, I didn’t think it would be a DIY stencil!! It looks like wallpaper you’d buy at a store! I love it 🙂

  • I’ve been waiting on a post about this project! You’re a master at utilizing simple projects to make a big impact!I’m so in love with these walls! Now, to convince my husband to let me use marker on our walls… 😉

    – Allison

  • Wow! I can’t believe this was a simple stencil DIH. Looks so good!


  • These are the kind of WOW projects I love so much. Time consuming, sure, but this is really great. I would love to do something similar in a little nook beside my fireplace! That wouldn’t take long at all and would be a perfect pop. Thanks! SIDENOTE :: I’m in love with that pen! Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie!

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