Love Letters

K&S

I think large letters are so much fun to use for decorating. When I found out that we were going to manufacture 18” letters, I was excited to create something different – happy that we included an Ampersand in the program!

40400 K40416 &

40408 S

This is what the letters look like – they are made from Baltic Birch Plywood. They are ½” thick and very durable. They also include keyholes in the back of each letter so they will hang flush on the wall.

I used Krylon Chalkboard Spray (http://www.krylon.com/products/chalkboard-paint) to basecoat each piece. Krylon also makes a brush-on chalkboard paint, but I thought it would be easier to spray. Make sure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label. I lightly sand between each coat and cure the paint for 24 hours. After the paint is thoroughly dry, rub the letters with regular chalk and wipe off the excess chalk with a paper towel.

Now you are ready to start decorating. I used Marvy/ Uchida Bistro Chalk Markers (http://www.uchida.com/p-243-bistro-chalk-marker-fine-point.aspx).  The Chalk Markers are so easy and fun to use. I used white, blue, green and pink Chalk Markers. For the “S” and the “K”, I began by making straight horizontal lines using a 12” ruler. The lines are randomly spaced, but make sure you go across the entire letter regardless of the letter shape so that the lines are kept straight from the bottom of the letter up and also line up across the letter.

Once all the lines are drawn, it’s time for the fun stuff – doodling or whatever you want to do. Just drawing lines, flowers, x’s, or adding dots makes it fun to fill in the spaces. It takes a short while for the Markers to dry, so be careful not to drag your hand or sleeve through them until they are finally dry. Wonder why I know to tell you that?……yes, I messed up a couple of times! If this happens to you, use a damp paper towel to wipe off a mistake, or try Windex wipes – they work well too.

Here are some close-ups of ideas for what you can do between the lines. For the “S” —

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Here are some close-ups of the “K” –

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For the Ampersand, I rubbed it with regular chalk, then wiped it off. Using the Chalk Markers, I made scallops and dots around each edge. Then came the buttons – lots of buttons. You can get lots of buttons at Buttons Galore & More (http://www.buttonsgaloreandmore.com/buttons-by-the-pound-s/1632.htm) I used  white buttons purchased by the pound.  I also added Classic Circles, which are circles of pearls . http://www.buttonsgaloreandmore.com/product-p/4207.htm).  I adhered the buttons and pearls with Tombow’s MONO Multi Liquid Glue. (http://tombowusa.com/craft/adhesives/mono-multi-liquid-glue.html ) Simply place the Multi Glue here and there for the button placement.  You will need to add the glue to the back of the pearl circles, then place on the Ampersand.

To add a little sparkle, I used the Creative Versa – Tool® dialed to the Yellow-Orange Zone to adhere clear hot-fix iron-on crystal embellishments. Some of the crystals were placed in the center of the pearl circle, some were randomly place here and there between the white buttons.

Here are some close-up photos to show you some button/ crystal placement:

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What 18″ letters would you choose? Please show us what you make!

Where’s the CAKE?

Many Brides are using signs to help guests find the way to parking, ceremony location, reception area, etc. Why not the CAKE?

Our new Rustic Pallet Program includes a Rustic Market Sign great for lots of things – to identify plants in your vegetable garden, flowers in your flower garden or a “welcome” to visitors in your front yard.

raw sign

I created a simple CAKE sign pointing the way to the wedding cake. It’s reusable because you can wipe off the word “CAKE” if you use a piece of chalk or a chalk pen.

Finished sign

Begin the project, stain the stake part of the wood piece by adding water to DecoArt® Americana® Brown Velvet.

stain

I always use the largest brush I have that fits the area for painting or staining anything.  I stained the entire stake with the thinned acrylic paint and let it dry. Use the same large brush to basecoat the sign area with Martha Stewart Chalkboard Paint – I used turquoise, rather than black.

Basecoat

Follow the directions on the bottle and let the second coat dry overnight. I didn’t rub chalk on the sign to “season” it because I was going to be using a chalk pen.

I used a couple of Tombow® Power Tabs to adhere the silk flower to the sign.

adhere flower

Because the Rustic Market Sign is quite rough, I wasn’t sure if the chalk pen would work or not. However, I think that using the chalk pen made the word on the sign more clear than if I had used a regular piece of chalk – it didn’t matter if the sign was rough or not!

chalkboard pen