Monday, February 11, 2013

Virginia is for Lovers: DIY String Art

Sometimes Pinterest seems like a sea of endless possibilities when it comes to DIY. When I was planning our wedding, I got severely overwhelmed by the amount of tiny details I could DIY. Sure, I loved the look and the level of personalization but the problem was, I didn't want to actually have to do it. It would have been too time consuming to actually make 21 table numbers in string art. Which is what I initially wanted to do for one of the many projects. I quickly scaled back a lot of things, and even completely nixing some of them. When Pinterest turns you into to a perfectionist-driven bridal breakdown mess, it's time to reevaluate what you're doing.

Now that wedding planning is behind me, I'm tackling some of the projects I didn't get to do on a smaller scale and all home decor-style. I think homemade and personal art always looks 10x better because it really defines your house. I always wanted one of those dark wood string art pictures of Virginia to hang since we met, fell in love and live in Virginia. Sure, I could've bought one off of Etsy for $35+. But really, this was so easy to do, and super therapeutic to make (not to mention did NOT cost $35 to make)! I used a combination of tutorials from different pins and decided there's no real wrong way to do it. 

-8 x 10 wood canvas (I got this one from Michaels), but really you could use any piece of wood lying around
-1 package of 11/16" linoleum nails (I did have to go Home Depot for these babies, it was worth it) You could use any nail that has a large enough head to keep the string from slipping and where the nail is short and stubby. I had about half of the nails left over.
-Wood stain (I used some leftover wedding stain)
-2+ bundles of embroidery floss in any color you like. It depends on how big your outline is, but I always ere on the side of having too much in case I underestimate.

After staining the wood canvas and letting it dry for a day, I was ready to start nailing. I Googled "outlines of Virginia", found one I liked, and printed it out. That simple. I contemplated for forever whether or not I should attempt to include the peninsulas. The nails would've been too close together and it would've looked like a mess so I decided to stick with the basic outline--aka skipping the peninsulas. I placed my outline right over top of my wood canvas and started nailing away. The tighter (closer together) you make your nails the more accurate the outline will be. This is especially important for complicated outline states (like Virginia). For states like Colorado, South Dakota, Utah, etc. I'm sure you could be a little more liberal with your spacing.

After lots of nailing, I ripped the paper outline off of the wood canvas. Then the fun part-- stringing the floss. I used the random method so that I could get the best coverage. You just simply need to knot the string to your first nail (you can cut the excess if it's too long). I went through about 1 and a half bundles of embroidery floss until it was completely covered.

And voila! I stuck a sawtooth hanger in the back so that we can eventually hang it in our new house! And now I'm wishing we lived in 5 other states so that I could create a collection. I just may do an Italy version to represent our honeymoon since we loved it so much. But that boot looks mighty intimidating!

1 comment:

  1. Aaaahhh!! I've wanted to do string art for so long! It looks wonderful, Shanny :]



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