DIY Inexpensive Wall Art – Personalized, Customized, and Absolutely Lovely!
Posted Jun 25 2013 12:01am
I haven’t posted much about my decorating skills, because, uh… I have none. I’m seriously lacking in that department. I’m always amazed at the genius and creativity of all those bloggers out there who look at an object and say, “Sweet! I can make THAT out of THIS!”, when “THAT” has absolutely nothing in common with “THIS”, and the end result is always extraordinary. I am not that kinda girl. I look at “THAT” and see… well, THAT.
So as you can see, creativity is not one of my strengths. Not even close! And that, my friend, is why I am inordinately proud of this recent project I completed! Because you know what? I completed the project start-to-finish without consulting Pinterest or any of those creative types (unless you count my DH, who has a degree in graphic design, and whose opinion was invaluable when it came to choosing the colors and papers). And I think the end result is absolutely lovely!
Here’s how this project evolved: I started with two picture frames that my DH had given to me for Christmas some years ago; and although I had pointed them out to him as a potential gift item, I had absolutely no idea what to do with them, so they sat largely unused for… umm…. a while. (Let’s just leave it at that.) The biggest problem was that I didn’t have enough actual pictures of people that were oriented in the same way (all vertical or all horizontal), and I also couldn’t figure out the best way to hang the two frames together, and where to put them, yada yada yada. Too many little problems for my pea-pickin’ little non-decorator brain to figure out.
But in our new place, I was determined to use them somehow, because – despite the issues they presented – they were beautiful frames, and my DH had given them to me. Thankfully, finding the spot on the wall was easy this time around. They fit perfectly in the space between the built-in media cabinet and the curtains and would totally finish out the little tableau I was creating there.
Unfortunately, figuring out what to put in those dumb frames was still an issue. I pondered over it for quite some time, mulling a variety of ideas before settling on creating some type of text-based graphic design myself. Then I pondered a little longer, trying to come up with two words that were 5 letters each, were meaningful to our family, and made sense. Faith and family would’ve been perfect except for the minor detail that “family” has 6 letters, not 5. Love and hope? Only four letters, and not necessarily words that personally meant a lot to us. Pretty words, but nothing that struck a chord in me.
Finally, I settled on using our initials. Not a perfect solution, I guess, because if our family grows, then we have to redo them! But for now, it works beautifully: they are both meaningful and personal, and the 3 characters balance nicely in the middle of the 5 slots.
I love the finished result, and these frames -inexpensive wall art that they are!- make me smile every time I see them. The colors complement the overall color scheme in our living area (gray, blue, brown with some black/white accents) and help to create a put-together look. But what I love best is that this art is personal to me! It’s not something I picked up on sale at Michaels’ or from the clearance rack at Marshall’s, and that makes all the difference in the world.
What I love second best is the price! I already had the frames on hand, and the paper cost less than $10. The whole project came together in one afternoon, and wasn’t that difficult at all. Actually, it was really quite easy!
2 frames with 5 openings, with matting included
2 sheets of blue open scrollwork scrapbook paper
2 sheets of black open scrollwork scrapbook paper
4 sheets of sturdy silver scrapbook paper
1 sheet of sturdy white linen scrapbook paper
1 sheet of sturdy black linen scrapbook paper
I measured and cut the scrollwork and silver papers to fit the openings in the mat, then I taped them to the back of the mat (scrollwork paper first, then the silver background). I alternated the blue and the black scrollwork papers to create a balanced but varied design.
Then I drew the letters freehand (my DH actually drew the ampersand template for me because my ampersands kept coming out like “S”‘s, lol) onto a piece of paper that was cut the size of the mat opening, making sure the letter filled the space but was neither too large nor too small. Then, using scissors and the craft knife, I cut the letters out to create templates, which I used to cut out the actual letters on the sturdy linen paper. Again, I used black for one set of initials and white for another to kind of balance out the look but keep things fresh.
Then I just used my glue stick to carefully adhere the letters to the scrollwork paper through the opening in the mat. Once they dried, I put the mat back into the frame, put the backing on the frame, and secured it. Then my DH hung it on the wall, and… DONE!