Tuesday, October 11, 2016

DIY Wooden Letter Board

If you search the hashtag #letterboard, on Instagram, you will be flooded with images of clever sayings and funny quotes. You will see felt letter boards, and wooden letter boards.  

I love the felt letter boards, and I also love the wooden letter boards! I had to give the diy version of this a shot, and it turned out better than expected!

I got all my supplies at Michael's.

You will need a piece of wood as your backing. You can use whatever you want.

I made two sizes, so I got two different boards.

You will need letters. I bought 3 bags of the small letters, because you need that many if you re going to spell many words.

This one set of the large letters worked for the larger board. It came with plenty of letters.

You will need balsa wood. 

You'll need 2 sizes.

1/8in. x 1/8in.

1/16in. x1/4in.

Cut your balsa wood to size with scissors. according to the size of your back board. Lay it out to make sure it looks nice. 

Use your letters as spacers.

Glue the square to the bottom of the flat piece in the middle.Then glue the, "shelf," to the board, using the letters as spacers. Some of the letters are bigger than others. Make sure to use the tallest ones as spacers.

The first time I did this, I used way too much glue, and had to scrape it away with a razor. The next time I did it, I only used a little bit of glue, and didn't meed to do any scraping. You learn as you go.

I am in love with how it turned out!

I made a large one, because it was so fast, inexpensive, and easy.

It looks great with my Halloween Decor, and it was fun to add in the little wooden characters (also from Michael's).

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a Happy and Creative Day!


Monday, October 10, 2016

Letterfolk Letter Board

I recently received a Letterfolk Letterboard, in preparation for my letter board segment on Studio 5. In my last post, I talked all about how to make your own letter board. I learned a lot! I just have to say, the DIY letter boards don't hold a candle to the Letterfolk letter boards. I'm not just saying that because I received a letter folk board. I LOVE a good knock off, but making my own was so much work that if I wasn't doing it for my segment, I never would have finished my diy boards. Making your own is very tedious, and takes a ton of time, and the finished product doesn't always even work.

The Letterfolk letter boards, are heavy, high quality, and beautifully constructed. 

I chose the Letterfolk White Writer. It's a midsize letter board, and the white felt is something I had not seen anywhere else. It's beautiful!

I wanted to personalize it  even more, so I spray painted a set of letters gold! They took the paint well. The only thing I may do next time, is spray a coat of primer first, because some of the gold paint comes off when you push the letters into the board. It's not permanent, but is a bit annoying to deal with, when you are moving letters around.

I have had so much fun with this board. I have been moving it all around my house. I can't wait to try out even more fun sayings and things for upcoming holidays! I think I will get another set or two of letters, to spray paint different colors. I'm already thinking Christmas!

Tune in to Studio 5 today at 11, for all things letter board!

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a Happy and Creative Day!


Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Felt Letter Board DIY

Let's talk about felt Letter Boards for a minute, shall we? It seems they are THE hot item in home decor these days! They are no longer found meerly housing the menu behind the counter at your favorite old school fast food joint. They are in our homes, our offices and at our parties. Why do we love them? Because they are nostalgically fresh! They are customizable, and clever. They will go wherever your imagination will take them!  Letter Boards work in any season and holiday, for any party or gathering, and even if you are just trying to make a statement on your Instagram feed, or document your babies age or a special day. They are even great for random thoughts, or inside jokes.

I have been seeing letter boards all over Instagram for months now, with clever sayings and thoughts. I have drooled over them, and wanted to bring one or two into my home. You can change them every day or leave them up for a long time. They are great in so many settings!

I love them, but didn't love the prices, so I searched high and low for a DIY tutorial on Pinterest. I found one where you need a laser wood cutter to make it. I don't have one of those, so this post was my inspiration. In addition, I came up with two versions of my own. I am just going to share them all here in one post, because I want to talk about the pros and cons of each option.

To make your own letter board, you will need:

A Frame - I got mine thrifted for $1. Your frame needs to be deep enough to house the dowels once they are wrapped in felt.

Craft Store Dowels - these were not labeled as to size, but they are the same size as the barbecue skewers you buy in the grocery store. Skewers would also work.

Felt - probably 4 sheets. It depends on the size of your board.

Glue Gun and glue sticks.
Something to cut the dowels down, if you need them cut.

3/4" Letter Board Letters - I got mine on Ebay. I got 2 sheets for $7.99 with $5 shipping.

I did this whole tutorial on the floor, because I thought I sprained my ankle, and after walking around on it for 10 days, found out it was broken. The floor was the most comfortable place to sit.

How did I break it? My family was on a hike. We were coming down the trail, and my sons and husband were running ahead. I was chasing after them trying to get some pictures, because the lighting was perfect, and my family is my favorite thing to photograph. I wasn't watching where I was going, and fell in a hole. The 1/2 mile hike out was no fun.

This photo was taken moments 30 minutes before I broke my ankle.

Back to the tutorial... 

Cut your dowels to the size of the frame. I found that using my husband's big strong nippers to do this worked best!!

Cut your felt into 3/4" wide strips the length of your dowels.

There are two ways to make the felt letter boards. You can use felt strips, or a long piece of felt. Wrap the felt around the dowel, and hold in place with hot glue. Try not to use a ton of hot glue, because it will make it lumpy and too big for the letters to stay in place stay.

You can also glue your dowels, spaced about an inch apart in a piece of felt that has been cut to the size of your frame.

For the first method, scoot your felt wrapped sticks in place, and secure with hot glue. You will want them as close as you can, without any overlap.

For the single sheet method, place the piece of fabric in the back of the frame, and scoot the dowels together, sandwiching the fabric between them, and glue in place.

You may need to push excess felt back with a spatula.

Glue everything securely in the back, wait for the glue to dry, and you are finished!

This project took between 2-3 hours. It was very tedious. The cost of the board ended up only being $1 for the frame and $1 for the felt (I had everything else), and the letters were $12.99 with shipping. So, for $15, this project wasn't too bad. See the little tails on the letters? Those need to be snipped off. Nail clippers work the best.

Between the two boards, the felt wrapped sticks took nearly 3 hours to complete, and the letters stayed in the best. It is very tedious. The pink board took around an hour to complete. It was less tedious, but the letters have a harder time staying in. You kind of have to work to get the letters into the slots, and some of the letters won't stay if it's standing up straight. I have to keep my homemade boards tilted back on an angle. I don't think I would put it on a wall. The good thing about it is you can customize your felt color. I have only seen letter boards that you can buy, in basic felt colors.

Method 3:

 You will need:

1.5" letters. I got mine on eBay.

An old frame with sturdy backing.

Heavy duty felt strips. I got mine at Home Depot. They are around $3.50 per package. I used 4 packages.

Cut your strips to the width of the frame backing.

Then, cut your strips half long way. I just used scissors.

Once your strips are cut, remove the sticker back, to expose the adhesive, and place them on the frame backing. When you have finished, put the whole backboard in the frame.

Put your letters in place, and hang up!

My letters stayed in place very well. This board works the best of the three I shared today, but you are limited to one color... the only color these strips come in, and one size of letter (my 3/4 and 1 inch wouldn't fit). If you look closely, you can see that the cut lines aren't perfectly straight, but it gives a nice overall effect. It cost  bit more, at  $28 total. $10 for letters, $2 for the frame, and $16 for the felt strips. 

Tomorrow, I'll be sharing my thoughts on letter boards that are not DIY, and comparing buying verses making yourself.

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a Happy and Creative Day!


Thursday, September 8, 2016

Anthropologie Knock-off Plate

The thing I love most in stores like Anthropologie and World Market, is their dishes and their dishtowels. I have loved the recent trend of insects in decor. I didn't want to spend money on something that was so trendy, and I would likely be tired of in 6 months, but still wanted to bring the look into my home for a fraction of the cost.

You cannot eat on these. They are decorative only. They are beautiful for plate walls, could be darling in a nursery, with a date, or picture. They would be awesome to display at Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas... any holiday, really. I love the insects for summer. They are very unexpected, and a fun conversation piece. They would be fun for a child, teenage, or adult craft night to make a jewelry dish. They are super customizable!

You will need (affiliate links):

Dishes (most of mine were thrifted)

Find the images you want to use. I prefer getting my images from Etsy, because they come with clear backgrounds if you use a png file, so you can cram more on your page. You can search any image you want. (You can also follow me there, to see what I am favoriting.) I used picmonkey to creamy collages. If you are unsure how to create a collage sheet, you can use THIS TUTORIAL. I tried to fit as many as I could on each page. Print your images onto your Water Slide sheets.

Wait for the ink to dry.

Spray each sheet with 3-4 coats of the acrylic spray, waiting 20 minutes, or until dry between each coat. This step is very important, probably the most important. If you don't do it, your image will not stay intact enough to transfer to your plate.

Cut the image you plan to use out of your sheet.

Place it in water for 30-60 seconds.  It will curl a little. That's okay.

After the allotted time, simply slide the paper off the back. The acrylic coating is what makes the decal stay intact.

Place your decal on your plate, and smooth it to get the excess water and bubbles out.

You are left with a beautiful and totally custom plate! These are example of plates I made. Some of the plates I used already had flowers on them, and others were plain. 

Thanks for stopping by.

Have a Happy and Creative Day!


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