DIY Projector Screen — Create Your Own With Paint, Fabric and More (2021)

DIY Projector Screen

So you’ve opted for a projector screen instead of a TV for the larger size and benefits for your eyesight. Is it really worth it to buy what is essentially just a blank canvas for a couple of hundred dollars, when you can make one yourself? 

Don’t worry, our experts are here to save you some money with a DIY projector screen.

Common DIY Projector Screens

Of course, you can go for a regular projector screen that can set you back a couple of hundred dollars or more. Why not save that money for something meaningful? Our experts say many individuals go for one side of their home theater wall, and while this can work, it isn’t optimized to portray the vivid colors of a true projector screen.

projector

Below are a few options for DIY projector screens that are easy to make, fun to do and can save you money!

Painted DIY Projector Screen

If you already have a white wall, there is less work for you to do. However, if you have colored walls, you need to identify where you want your screen to be and isolate that space. Our experts remind viewers that uneven surfaces are the bane of projectors. 

If you have moldings, you will be required to construct an even surface first. Some examples are extra pieces of plywood or an elevated mounted platform protruding from your wall.

white wall

You just have to be sure your wall is one flat area for your screen. Once you have a designated screen space, calculate the size you want and the throw distance. We will dive into more detail on how to do that in a bit.

Using a projector screen paint, you can paint the area for your screen and make sure you sand down the uneven imperfections. Use a nice soft white and do it with even strokes. At the end, you can even add a frame for that extra touch.

Fabric DIY Projector Screen

If you don’t want to permanently alter the aesthetics of your home, a fabric projector screen is the next best option. Hang a piece of white cloth that’s big enough for your distance and then secure it in place. We would suggest a rolling clothesline or even use thumbtacks.

Makeshift Projector Screen

For temporary use, you can opt for a quick makeshift projector screen for your home theater projector. The backside of wrapping paper is a good idea if it’s white. The crispness of the paper makes it easy to secure and it’s easy to reuse the wrapping paper afterwards. Window shades or drawn curtains can also make a good makeshift projector screen on the fly.

cutting white cloth

Measure Your DIY Projector Screen

Just how large of a screen do you need? Look at the size of your room to calculate the throw distance, which is how far your projector is from the screen to deliver a clear picture. Any kind of top-performing projectors even under 500 should be somewhere in the center of the room and the screen should be proportionate to your room size.

Pick Materials For Your DIY Projector Screen

Our team suggests blackout fabric [1] if you plan to go the hanging screen route, and opaque white paint (regardless of brand) that glides on smoothly to the wall and doesn’t crack or flake. If you are going for a temporary makeshift screen, then wrapping paper is an easy and handy option.

sewing machine

Frame DIY Projector Screen

If you intend on framing your projector screen, PVC or wood material is best. You can even just paint the border a different color to frame your center material. It’s all up to you and how much work you want to put into it. 

FAQ

What material can I use for a projector screen?

You can use materials like paint, fabric, or utilize your already white and blank wall for a projector screen. You just need to make sure the surface is smooth and free of imperfections to get the best results.

How do I make my own projector screen?

You can make your own projector screen by using materials you have around the house, going out to purchase fabric or paint, or making use of your already blank wall. 

Makeshift screens can be made with window shades or wrapping paper or even bedsheets. Our experts recommend painting a section of the wall or using blackout fabric for more permanent options.

Can you use a bed sheet for a projector screen?

Yes, you can use a bed sheet for a projector screen if it is white, thick, free of wrinkles, and enough not to let light through. Our experts recommend cutting eyelets in these bedsheets for easy hanging. Just remember to keep it taut when projecting your content.

How can I make a cheap projector screen at home?

You can make a cheap projector screen at home by making use of your blank white wall, painting a portion of your wall, or using a hanging screen from bedsheets, curtains, wrapping paper or any other material that can create a smooth white surface.

Conclusion

A true projector screen is optimized for indoor viewing, but they can cost upwards of a few hundred dollars. Why not try your hand at a DIY projector screen and save some money? 

You can take advantage of old bed sheets or hone your interior designer skills and paint a section of your wall. The only thing our experts will remind our readers of is to be sure the surface is free of wrinkles and uneven blemishes.

living room space with white wall

If you want a clean home theater setup, check our guide on how to make your projector wireless here. 

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Writer

Willie Greer
Willie Greer
Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. A cinephile, he has made it a personal quest to achieve the awesomest home theater possible. He now shares what he has learned through the years on the site, and has enlisted the help of tech-savvy colleagues in providing more insight about today’s most sought-after gadgets.