I think I’m safe posting this now. I know Matt is super busy with everything at work, so I’m betting (and hoping) he’s not going to read this post. Matt … maybe I’m actually testing you here??
Anyway, I wanted to share with you a fun project that we worked on over the weekend. I say ‘we’ because Matt actually had to help me with a couple things on this project (completely unaware that he was actually working on his own Valentine’s Day present). He has pretty much stopped asking questions about what I’m working on, and just spray paints random objects as I request.
This year for Valentine’s Day, I wanted to give him something personal. Something unique. And, of course, something handmade. I also happened to know that his office is in desperate need of some updated pictures. I’m not exaggerating here … the one of the two of us is from college, and has got to be at least 12 years old. He does have a picture of both boys, though Charlie’s is from his second day in the hospital (he’ll be two in April).
Pictures it is! But … I didn’t just want to give him a regular old framed picture (because that would just be waaaay too easy), so here’s what I came up with …
A collection of my favorite recent family pictures. And … the worn looking wood block makes this picture collage seem oh so manly. Baby 3 even makes an appearance here! Can’t get much more updated than that picture from last Friday’s ultrasound!!
This would be a great gift for anyone OR just as a project to display some of your favorite photos around the house. Maybe a collection of different size blocks … some with photos, some with words, numbers, or letters? So many possibilities!
Do you have some scrap wood laying around just screaming for some pictures to be mod podged to it??
Well … scrap wood or not, here’s how you make these photo blocks …
- Scrap block of wood (like I mentioned above). If you don’t have this … buy one from Michael’s (as I admit to doing here). Mine happens to be an 8″x10″ block, and it was something like $12 (of which I paid about $7.50 after my coupon).
- Two colors of paint. The main color (in my case, white), and the color that will show through after distressing (in my case, dark grey).
- Mod Podge and brush. I used the Matte Finish kind.
- Photos. I like to use black and whites for these more ‘vintage’ looking blocks (plus I didn’t have an option on the ultrasound pic).
- Letters/words. I simply printed off the words ‘love you.’ in a font I liked on regular paper, and cut them out.
- Upholstery tacks. I used the antique brass finish tacks. I sent Matt to Lowe’s to get these (again … completely clueless that it’s for his own present). He informed me that there were
a millionseveral different finishes and sizes to choose from in the hardware aisle.
- Vasoline (huh???? I’ll get to this in a minute)
- Sandpaper and/or powered hand sander
- With my ‘scrap’ block of wood, I first sanded the edges and corners to make it look like it was actually an old scrap piece of wood (rather than a brand new, perfectly cut craft block of wood from the store).
- Next, paint edges and corners (and anywhere else you may want to show through when you distress it), your darker color (Pewter Grey, in my case)
- Once all coats have dried, apply Vasoline to the areas that you don’t want your top color to stick to (i.e. edges, corners, etc).
- Paint the block your top color. I used white spray paint here. It needed two coats, and like I said, Matt was very cooperative to do this part for me (spray paint & preggos don’t mix well).
- Once your top color is dry … the fun part begins. Using some sandpaper, gently sand all edges and corners to reveal the dark grey underneath. My white paint basically fell off in the areas I had applied Vasoline.
- Next, choose your pictures and cut down to the desired size. Do the same to your printed out letters.
- Apply a generous coat of Mod Podge to entire front of block
- Stick pictures and letters/words in place and let dry for 15-20 minutes.
- Apply at least two additional coats of Mod Podge over the tops of your photos and words.
- Once Mod Podge is dry, add upholstery tacks as desired. I added them to the corners of each photo.
- And finally …. wrap up block, and give to your hubby (right after you print one of these adorable gift tags from Soho Sonnet Creative Living).
I love how this turned out! I just may need to make
some one for our house, now, too!
And now I want to know … what are you ladies planning to give your men for Valentine’s Day? Something super romantic?? Something sweet? Something food related? Nothing?