If you love dipping into art, especially the DIY type, you will enjoy diamond painting. Unlike other arts and crafts, you don’t need any previous experience to give it a go. Plus, the results of painting with diamonds come quickly and without any stress.
If anything, you will be a lot more relaxed because it’s therapeutic art. Every time you paint with diamonds you will feel a fulfilling calmness of nerves and alleviation of anxiety. That’s pretty much what diamond painting has been doing since its beginning in 2015 – easing stress and turning hobbyists into great artists.
No wonder it’s picking up plenty of buzz in the art world. Needless to say, you need to know at least the basics of diamond painting. We’ve got you covered!
What Is Diamond Painting?
Diamond painting is a type of mosaic art where you place small facets, popularly known as “diamonds” or drills, on an adhesive canvas to create patterns and designs for paintings2. It’s a hybrid of paint by numbers and cross-stitch, except with more sparkly designs.
The best part, at least by popular opinion, is that it’s quite simple and straightforward. Even if you’ve never tried to paint with diamonds, you can give it a shot and produce a very decent first painting. So, how exactly does it work?
Well, the DMC-coded adhesive canvas is usually printed with letters and symbols. What you do is to place designated diamonds on each of those letters and symbols. Usually, the best diamond painting canvas will come with a guide outlining where each diamond should be placed.
That’s how you know where each one of the many diamonds goes. So your job is simply sticking a diamond on its spot on the canvas. The top layer of the canvas has some glue that holds the diamonds in place. Once you’re done, the various colors will create one sparkly piece of art1.
In case you’re wondering, the facets are called “diamonds,” but they are not made of anything quite so valuable. Instead, they are made of organic polymer resins, which explains why they are shiny (though not as much as real diamonds). It does help that they are cut into their sides because that makes them look more like real diamonds1.
Applying these facets on a canvas is not just an enjoyable process, but a relaxing and meditating experience as well2. And you can make it even more fun by choosing the very best diamond painting kit for your projects.
Diamond Painting Kits
At this point, you know what it means to paint with diamonds. Now the big question is, how and where do you start? The very first thing you need to do is browse through the many diamond painting kits and choose the one that suits you best.
There are many factors to consider when making your choice. For example, should you go for a square drill or round drill? This is a matter of personal preference because they all work the same8. But we all know that some people generally prefer rounded shapes over linear ones and others have a liking for linear shapes. If you fall in the latter group, you will probably want to choose square drills (more on this later).
Nonetheless, your choice won’t affect the overall quality of the final painting. But one thing that will surely influence the appearance of your art is the size of the diamond painting canvas. The bigger the canvas, the more detailed the painting will be. Conversely, if you use a small canvas your painting may look grainy.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that small is bad. If anything, a small canvas is an excellent pick if you are a beginner. The general rule of thumb is that the best diamond painting kits for beginners should measure 20 x 25 cm while intermediate and expert kits should be 30 x 40 and 40 x 60 cm respectively8.
As you would expect, scaling up the size results in a more detailed painting. But it’s wise not to try a big canvas until you’re absolutely comfortable with the smaller ones. And remember to specify the exact dimensions of the canvas when ordering your diamond painting kit.
Speaking of which, below are the items included in a typical kit1. That includes all the good diamond painting Amazon kits, Walmart kits, Michaels kits and those found in all reputable stores:
- A diamond painting canvas in your preferred size, usually printed with a design chart
- Diamonds (drills) in a variety of colors
- A tray for holding the drills as you work
- An applicator pen for picking up the drills
- Glue or wax for the pen
Every single one of them will come in handy when you want to paint with diamonds. Feeling a bit confused about the role of each? Here’s a step by step guide3 on how to go about creating a diamond art with the items found in a kit:
- Lay out your diamond painting canvas on a flat surface
- Look at the chart on the canvas to determine the color of diamonds to use. Choose one color diamond to start with.
- Place the chosen diamonds in the holding
- Gently dip the tip of the applicator pen in the That should enable you to easily pick up the drills.
- Now press the waxed tip of the applicator pen on the rounded side of the drill.
- Pull back the plastic film on the canvas and carefully press the drill onto its corresponding symbol.
- Repeat the steps until you have covered all the symbols. That will indicate that your design is complete.
- When you’re done with the entire process, cover the design with the protective film and then use a rolling pin to secure the drills on the sticky surface of the canvas. Do it as gently as possible to avoid damaging your painting2.
It’s worth mentioning that while some diamond painting kits come with wax, others come with tweezers. Both options work just fine, but most people prefer wax because it makes the process a lot easier.
Also, it’s not uncommon for your canvas to have creases when it’s delivered. That’s because most of the best diamond painting kit sellers usually wrap the canvas around a firm rod or foam noodle. When you unroll it, it comes out creased.
Luckily, getting rid of the creases is a breeze. You can either put the canvas under your mattress and let is stay there overnight, or put a few heavy books on top. In both cases, the weight (of your body or books) will iron out the creases. If none of those options works, you can consider carefully cutting the creases with an X-Acto knife3.
5D Diamond Painting
Should you choose 3D or 5D diamond painting kits? You can answer the question best once you understand the difference between the two. A 5D diamond has 5 facets on each side. That brings the total number of facets to 15.
3D Diamond Painting
A 3D diamond, on the other hand, has 3 facets on each side. It has a total of 9 facets. One thing that you will notice about a 3D diamond painting kit is that its drills are quite small. They measure about 2.5 x 2.5 mm.
Is the number of facets on a drill important when you want to paint by diamonds? Absolutely! You can find a very detailed explanation here4. But let me summarize it just in case you’re strapped for time.
Basically, 5D diamonds have more facets, more depth and therefore more sparkle than their 3D counterparts. In other words, if you use a 5D diamond painting kit, your final piece of art is likely to have a pretty and sparkly appearance.
Try to look at these two types of drills as real gemstones. If 3D drills were cubic zirconia, 5D drills would be actual diamonds. Cubic zirconia is generally a precious metal of high value. When you observe it from a distance, it looks pretty and sparkly. But the moment you get up-close you realize that it doesn’t glitter quite as brightly as a diamond.
Compared to cubic zirconia, diamonds are deeper and more complex, which makes them sparkle a lot more. In this example, 5D drills are like diamonds. Because of their higher number of facets (compared to 3D) and bigger depth, they shine brighter and look prettier.
If that’s the case, why do people need 3D diamond painting anyway? Because some painting styles work great with 3D drills. Better yet, you may need to use both 3D and 5D diamonds to give your art more perspective. For example, if you want a viewer’s attention to be drawn to a particular component of the painting, you can use 5D drills to accentuate that component and 3D drills to make other things less apparent4.
How to Frame a Diamond Painting
So, what should you do with your completed paint with diamonds art? You could sell it if the quality is up there with the best. Or, you could keep it for yourself so that you keep appreciating the amazing work of your hands. As far as methods of storage go, there’s nothing better than framing your piece of art and hanging it up in your house or office1.
The painting will not only spruce up your interior décor, but it will also do your pride and ego some good. Since you’re doing DIY diamond painting, you could take your craft skills one step further and create a fabric wall hanging for the painting. Pick out a fabric that blends well with your project and use it to create a border2.
Alternatively, you can get a premium frame like this one sold by Paint with Diamonds or this offering on Amazon. Some Amazon diamond painting kits and accessories come with exciting discounts and offers. Not to mention the wide variety you will find. So don’t be afraid to browse through the world’s biggest e-commerce site for a frame that goes well with your painting.
After several weeks and months of diamond painting, you will probably have more designs than you can frame. When they start to pile up, you can use a few of them as accent pillows for couches, sofas, and chairs. Simply pick out a matching fabric for creating a border and backing for the pillow and then fill it with stuffing. Finish by attaching the diamond painting on the fabric and you will have a nice-looking homemade pillow.
Still have more diamond painting designs? You can also use them as covers for books, photo albums, and even scrapbooks. Take the finished design, trim it to fit the book (or whatever you are covering) and then use double-sided foam tape to adhere2.
What is Full Drill Diamond Painting?
In this craft, you will often come across certain terms like “full drill” and “partial drill”. So, what does full drill mean in diamond painting? And how does it differ from a partial drill?
To keep it simple, full drill means that the entire picture should be covered with diamonds. In other words, the whole picture – from edge to edge – is the pasting area and should be covered with diamonds. Partial drill, on the other hand, means that a section of the printed picture should not be covered with drills. It’s already designed, so your work is simply filling the un-designed parts. You could say that partial drill diamond paintings use drills as accents on certain parts of the printed canvas.
Does it make a difference whether you choose partial or full diamond painting kits? Yes, it does. While partial ones are less expensive, you only get a fraction of the advertised diamonds (because some sections are filled already). The problem is that paintings made using partial diamonds usually look far less beautiful9.
Besides full and partial drills, other terms that you may come across are “square drill” and “round drill.” These two refer to the shape of the diamonds. It follows that square drills are square while round drills have a circular shape.
Despite the differences in shape, square drills are just as good as round drills. There’s no right or wrong here, but there are some things to consider. For example, square drills line up better and usually result in a “fuller” looking painting.
On the other hand, round drills are easier to pick up and drop on the canvas. They make the process of painting with diamonds to be a breeze. However, their round shape usually leaves the painting looking like it has gaps. That’s because round drills don’t line up as well as square drills which have linear edges3.
If you are an experienced diamond painter, you will feel comfortable with either type of drill. But if you are a beginner, you’re more likely to enjoy using round drills than square drills because round ones are easy to pick up and place on the canvas.
What Is the Wax for in Diamond Painting?
Diamond painting kits usually come with a variety of items (check above for the full list). One of them is a tub of wax or glue. You use this wax to stick diamonds on the applicator pen and then transfer the diamonds to the canvas1.
It’s a simple process really. Simply peel off the wax’s covering and then dip the applicator pen until the pen’s nib is filled with wax. Now, use the wax-filled pen to pick up drills by pressing the pen on the heads of the drills that you want to pick up. The drills will easily stick to the pen and then you can transfer them to their respective location on the canvas.
Don’t use too much pressure when picking up diamonds. Otherwise, the wax in the applicator pen may stick on the surface of the diamonds and dull their shine. If that happens anyway, despite your best efforts to not dull your painting with wax, you can go ahead and clean the drills. But don’t do that immediately. Instead, let the diamonds dry first and then gently clean their surfaces with a damp microfiber cloth5. That will bring their shine back.
Still on “matters wax,” if you’re not so comfortable using the wax included in your 3D or 5D diamond painting kit, you can replace it with tac. In addition to being more durable, tac is less sticky compared to wax. And it’s less likely to drab your diamonds’ shine; not to mention that you can make it (tac) at home5.
Diamond Painting Club
Looking to interact with other diamond painters and diamond painting enthusiasts? You could join a diamond painting club. The one that comes to mind right away is the famous Diamond Painting Club. This club was founded by Amy, a “self-proclaimed diamond painting fanatic” with lots of love for crafting.
Amy says that she founded the club out of frustration. Most of the diamond painting kits that she came across were either of poor quality or were accompanied by horrible customer service. So she made it her mission to bring back “some of the sparkle” to the diamond painting craft. And, to give credit where credit is due, she has.
Thanks to this all-inclusive club, now painters can share their finished designs, ask questions and get answers, purchase full diamond painting kits and simply interact on an equal level of diamond painting enthusiasm. You can even sell your diamond painting designs through the Diamond Painting Club and get all the credit for it. It’s one of the few clubs, if not the only one, that actually gives art designers credit. That’s just one of the many reasons why you may want to join this club. Here are a few more:
- You will get high-quality canvases that are made of a smooth and sticky adhesive. Do you want that? Absolutely! Such a canvas will make your work simple.
- All canvases have great printing that features clear symbols. While the canvas has a white background, the symbols have darker shades for easy reading.
- You will get a full set of diamonds that you order, organized in one re-sealable bag per color. In case you didn’t know, many sellers usually deliver kits with some missing bags of diamonds. Diamond Painting Club packs whatever you ordered and then some, just in case you need extras.
- It’s one of the few clubs that design their own diamond painting products. Each kit contains a high-quality canvas, double-sided applicator pen, white diamond tray, wax, and tweezers.
- All those items, including the canvas (rolled around a foam tube), are packaged in an inflatable tube instead of a box. The problem with boxes is that they are prone to damage even with the slightest of impacts. An inflatable tube removes that problem. So you can be guaranteed that every item in a package ordered from Diamond Painting Club will be safe and intact.
Diamond Painting for Kids
One of the best things about painting with diamonds is that you can enjoy it as a family. And your kids will love it. It doesn’t require any artistic streak, which means that your little ones can create paintings that are as good as those made by adults.
More importantly, diamond painting for kids comes with tons of benefits for you and your kid. For one, it’s a fun-filled activity that can keep your little one engaged for hours on end. If you are driving, doing chores or generally getting some work done, you can keep him/her busy with this craft.
In addition to that, it helps with cognitive development. Every time the child holds focus to determine where to place a drill, his/her mind goes to work to process that information. At the same time, he/she will learn a thing or two about consistency7.
Finally, diamond painting is the type of art that shapes a kid’s overall character. It imparts patience, concentration, analytical skills,, organizational skills, and a host of other skills that your kid can pick up one drill at a time. And when the final piece is complete, his/her confidence will be as high as you need it to be7. That’s what expressive art like diamond painting does – it boosts self-worth. I could probably go on for hours about how painting with diamonds is much better than playing with gadgets or video games, but I think you get the idea.
Having said that, this craft is not ideal for all kids. In fact, it can be very risky for those who are 3 years or younger. At that age, the toddler will almost always want to put the drills in his mouth7. First of all, they are not edible. Secondly, they can quickly turn from artistic facets to choking hazards. So if your toddler falls in that age group, you may want to keep your diamond painting kits from his/her reach.
But if they are old enough, by all means, let them unlock the artist in them. Needless to say, you will need to buy diamond painting kits for kids. They typically have the same components as kits for adults; i.e. a canvas, diamonds, applicator pen, wax, tweezers, and diamond tray. In some cases, you may also get a cool storage box with kid-friendly arts.
The big question, when you’re choosing a child’s kit, is whether to pick a round or square diamond painting drill. As mentioned already, round drills are generally easier to place. That makes them ideal for kids7 because you don’t want your child to get frustrated. Kids who are 13 years or older can choose what they prefer.
Similarly, between partial and full diamond kits, it is recommended that you choose partial drill diamond painting for your little one. Why? Because a partial kit has an area on which to stick diamonds, and the rest of it is already filled. With such a design, your kid won’t get tired before finishing the painting7. Remember that kids have a shorter concentration span than adults, and if you try to push them to their limits they may end up hating the activity altogether.
How do you choose the best canvas design for your kid? If you ask around, many people will agree that kids have very particular tastes. Some enjoy drawing animals, others like cars more, and there are those who prefer to draw family portraits. It’s not strange to find kids who are thrilled by unicorns, superheroes and everything fictional. Give them what they like most.
Since you know your child better than anyone else, you can buy a design of something that they like most. It won’t do any harm to switch up as they grow, because more often than not, interests usually change as people grow older.
Where to Buy Paint with Diamonds
Who sells diamond painting kits? There are so many online and retail stores that sell them. Most of them allow you to specify where you want the kit to be delivered. Take Amazon diamond painting sellers for example. Although they are independent sellers, they work under the rules and regulations set by Amazon. Which means that they must process and ship the order within two business days.
The problem with diamond painting Amazon sellers is that they are so many and it may take you a while to figure out which ones are reputable. If you don’t have the time, you can try browsing through the rich category at Diamond Painting Club. They have original designs as well as enthusiasts and artists who are trying to sell their finished diamond painting arts.
Now, can you sell diamond paintings? Absolutely! Many platforms support that, from diamond painting clubs like the Diamond Painting Club and the Diamond Art Club to e-commerce sites like Amazon and e-Bay. You can even market your finished diamond painting pieces to your family and friends and see who is interested in buying.
Common Questions about Diamond Painting
1. How long does it take to do diamond painting?
The amount of time it takes to complete a diamond painting depends on the size of the canvas and your speed. Generally, the smallest kit will take 6 to 10 hours if you don’t take breaks. The largest may take over 20 hours.
2. What is Diamond Dotz?
Diamond Dotz is a company that makes diamond painting kits. You can get diamond Dotz kits for beginners, intermediates and advanced users. Each kit comes with all the items required to complete a diamond painting; i.e. a canvas, diamonds, applicator pen, wax, tweezers, and diamond tray.
3. How do you do diamond Dotz?
The process of completing Diamond Dotz is the same one used to complete any other diamond painting. In other words, start by placing the canvas on a flat surface. Check out the design on the canvas to determine the color diamonds to use. Choose one color diamond to start with and then place the chosen diamonds in a tray. Gently press the applicator pen in wax and use it to pick up the drills. Peel back the plastic film on your canvas and then press the drill onto its corresponding symbol. Repeat the process until you cover all the symbols.
4. How do I seal diamond painting?
whether you want to store or sell your diamond painting art, it’s crucial that you seal it first. That way you will increase its overall appearance and longevity. There are several ways of sealing a diamond painting, with the best one being a brush-on sealer. It not only it not only provides a water-resistant surface but also enhances the painting’s finish. Not sure which brush-on sealer to use? .
If you’re not so thrilled about this option, you can try a spray-on sealer. This one is excellent at retaining the diamonds’ sparkle.
5. What can I do with leftover diamond painting beads?
When you finally complete your diamond painting, there’s every possibility that you will have some leftover drills. Naturally, you will want to store them, and there are some brilliant methods of doing that. For one, you can keep them in an egg container and seal it with a rubber band.
6. Does Walmart carry diamond painting kits?
Yes. Walmart stocks diamond painting kits for kids and adults alike, in various colorful designs.
7. Where can I get free diamond painting designs?
There are several online stores that offer free diamond painting designs and kits. Free Diamond Painting is a good place to start if you can’t spend on a kit for one reason or another. You can also check out Always a Great Choice for great offers that include the occasional free kit.