Wednesday, October 16, 2013

DIY String Art Tutorial

No doubt by now it is a well known fact that I love to make my own, one-of-a-kind decor.  So for the nursery, I wanted to customize baby girl's name in a way that wouldn't take up the entire wall since her name is so long.  Her room's colors are mint walls, white furniture, with grey, yellow and pink accents (particularly light pink and antique rose).  I purchased crochet yarn in all her colors from either Walmart or another craft store with mega coupon deals.  The white board backdrop was leftover from a shelf we put up, but you can find one at Lowe's and have them cut it to your specific size.  Make sure you get heavy duty picture hanging hardware too.
 This was super easy, and only cost me about $20 and 2 hours of my Saturday.

What You'll Need:

  • Nails- get them at least 3/4 of an  inch long, and definitely look for the kind with the large flat top, like box nails or wire nails.  Get more than you think you'll need.  Estimate at least 15-20 nails per letter.
  • Hammer
  • Wood Backing- Check your hardware store for the right size lumber, or make your own.  For the "Home" sign I used scrap pieces of wood from a shelf that fell apart and glued together each panel with construction adhesive. 
  • Picture Hanging Hardware- these come in kits or you can buy D-rings and 50-lb capacity wire separately. Just get the heavy duty kind.
  • Crochet Yarn- I like it better than the regular knitting yarn because you can use more of it for interlacing inside the letters.  I think the weight I used was size 5 or 10.
  • Printer- For your letter templates
  • Scissors

  1. Once your materials are purchased, pick a font for your letters and print off each letter on a separate sheet. You may want to cut them out.  Make sure it fits nicely on your wood and arrange them to the desired layout.

    You can use a bit of Scotch tape to hold letters in place
  2. Before you hammer anything in, attach the picture hardware to the back of your wood about 1/3 the distance from top to bottom.  (Closer to the top, but make sure the wire doesn't have enough slack to hang above the backing- hopefully that makes sense!) 
    This is upside-down.  The top is sitting on the counter.
  3. Hammer a nail into every corner and joint of the letters.  Use your discretion for how many you place, especially on the curved letters.  The more nails, the more places to weave your yarn.  You may want to put a dish cloth or other absorbent cloth underneath the sign to help dispel some of the force...and keep the hardware from digging into your counter.  
  4. Choose your string color for each letter. One at a time, remove a paper letter and tie the string onto one of the nails. Begin wrapping the yarn around, through, and diagonal across the letter. Make the outside lines of each letter and the cutouts heavier than the inside webbing. Finish by tightly knotting the yarn around another nail. Continue for each letter.

Keep the paper letters taped behind the nails so you don't get mixed up! 
That's it!  Just hang it up, being sure to use drywall anchors if no stud is available.  

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial!

Can't get enough? Need some inspiration? 
Scroll down for photos of the "Home" version I made for my sister.
A 3-tier shelf we had was falling apart, piece by piece.  The black paint was chipping and the wood was warped.

So I removed each shelf and glued the individual panels together using construction adhesive to create one piece 

Once the glue dried, I sanded the entire piece, attempting to maintain some of the chippy paint

The entire piece was then stained with Dark Walnut stain and Poly and allowed to dry completely

I printed the letters, replacing the 'O' with a heart

White string for the letters, grey for the heart
All finished!  Mr. Frog loved it so much he wanted to keep it for himself!

Thanks for reading and hope you have a great day!

-Mrs. Frog Prince

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