Two (and a half) Ways to Customize Cardboard Letters

So who's been loving all of the monogram and wooden letter crafts that have been taking over pinterest?? I have to admit, I've been a fan since I first joined Pinterest, but it took me until about now to finally hop on the bandwagon. The first letter craft I made was an oversized "S" as an end-of-the-semester gift for my college choir director (Her first name is Stacey). In keeping with the sentimental theme of a "farewell until fall" present, I decided to use copies of sheet music from our Spring Concert to cover the entire letter.  

 

I bought this cardboard/papier-mache letter from Joann Fabrics. This size runs about 9.99 per letter. This project was actually my first foray into Mod-Podge and I have to say, I am 100 addicted now. That stuff is amazing!

 

 

I started by ripping the sheets of paper into irregular shaped pieces, with the average size being about half the size of my palm. This size seemed to work the best when piecing the music back together onto the letter. I then coated the entire letter in Mod-Podge, using a foam brush.

 

 

 

I then began piecing the sheet music onto the letter, being careful to alternate the direction of the staff lines as well as the genre of music being represented because, you know, I'm just strange like that... As I put down each piece of paper, I went over it with another coat of Mod-Podge to secure it.  I did add one thing to the topcoat however....

 

Pearlescent paint! I thought the shimmer would match my choir director's personal taste more than just the plain white sheet music would. (She has this awesome pair of bronze cowboy boots, which were kind of my inspiration for the metallic shimmer!) To get this effect, I added very small amount of pearlescent paint to the Mod-Podge, since I wanted the topcoat to remain transparent. The ratio was probably 5:1, Mod-Podge to Pearlescent Paint. I used a silvery white, but I think this would look beautiful in any color! I made sure to stir the mixture thoroughly before applying to ensure an even topcoat.

 

 

 

And this is how it turned out!  Well actually, this is just a picture of it drying... I made this the night before we were leaving on our annual choir tour so I forgot to snap a picture of it in it's fully complete, off the newspaper form! To allow the letter to hang on a wall, I used the "soda-tab-and-hot-glue" fix, another pinterest find, which is probably the easiest and least expensive way to ready something for hanging! I'll post a tutorial on that next time!

 

 

 

Here's an upclose picture of the pearlescent paint effect:

 

 

I was very happy with the results and my choir director loved it!

In fact, I was so inspired that when my good friend Haley's birthday rolled around this June, I made another letter craft! This time, I forgot to take pictures as I was making it, but I do have some nice final photos to show you guys!

 

 

 

To make this, I used leftover white paint from my server project to coat the whole letter twice. After the white had dried for about 24 hours, I used yellow Frog Tape (for delicate surfaces) to tape off 1 inch sections, that I then sprayed with the same Oil-Rubbed Bronze paint that I used for the hardware on my server. The result was a cool off-white and metallic black stripe that I thought gave a little more interest than just a stark, flat black and white strip would have.

 

 

Before I gave it to Haley, I made a little pink tissue paper flower to put on the upper left hand corner. I think it was a cute finishing touch!

 

 

 

I just bought two more cardboard letters, an S and an A for my fiance and I to put in our new apartment! :) :) I'm planning on doing a spray paint finish to try to get them to look like this:

 

 

 

Stay tuned!!!