Thursday, March 31, 2011

DIY Printer's Block Art

(Have you met my favorite vintage owl plate? :)



While this concept is nothing new, I love the idea of creating printer block art for yourself using the letters that you've collected over time, it has so much more meaning I think. I finally got enough letters in my collection to create my own piece of art. Happy, happy, joy, joy.

What you'll need for this project:


Deep frame or shadow box frame


Matting without any openings


Vintage printer block letters


Glue gun


Depending on how large your block letter collection is will determine what size frame you'll need. I used 19 letters and my frame is 20 inches square. I would like to do some smaller ones too, after I do some more collecting.
I went to Hobby Lobby's framing department and had them cut some matting for me without any openings. They do charge for the cuts but luckily the matting itself was on sale, so it wasn't too bad. I used matting because it's nice and firm, anything else would be too flimsy. I think another neat idea would be to use fabric or burlap on the matting if you are not into the modern look. Next, begin working on the composition of the letters, this is not an exact science, just use your eye to get the composition right. I have a combination of big and small wooden blocks and a couple of metal ones, so yours will depend on what you've got. I did some upside down and sideways to keep it interesting. I recommend occasionally laying the frame down on what you've done to make sure it's looking right within the frame. I have had this frame for years and it just so happened to be deep enough to accommodate the letters, but shadow box frames will work too. Once the composition is perfect, begin to glue each letter down on the matting, carefully picking them up and quickly laying them back down making sure nothing shifts. Carefully put the frame back together and it is ready to hang! It ended up being kinda heavy! I hung my new/old piece of art among thrifted plates and photographs....using the vintage letters and the modern frame is like music to me! Here's a bonus project; I found a scalloped plate while thrifting, sprayed it flat black and glued a craft mirror in the center, I love it and super simple! I love how it turned out and is quite the focal point. I am still working on a post specifically focused on creating a gallery wall, so be sure to look for that soon. Thank you for stopping by, I hope you're inspired to create some art!








Chic on a Shoestring Decorating



19 comments:

  1. Hi Michelle,
    Love your newest piece of art! I have a weakness for old typeface and printer's blocks (my Dad was a typesetter for years). This is a great project and one I am sure to copy :)
    Jane

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  2. I love it! That owl plate is great...I want one!!

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  3. Love it, this is definitely a project I want to copy. I'm working on creating a gallery wall in my new kitchen. Where did you find all of the different letters.

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  4. Thanks everyone,
    Ches, I found all of the letters at various antique stores.

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  5. What a great idea! I don't have a collection of Block Letters... but now I think I'll have to start one!
    And I love that owl... I've been thinking of doing a drawing of an owl so it might just be the inspiration that I need.
    Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Love your wall and the picture you made with your printer's block letters. It's always fun to collect something cool and interesting. Great idea!

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  7. That's really cool, I love the block letters. They're so interesting to show off.

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  8. I absolutely love your block letter wall art and your blog! I'm starting my new link party today and would love for you to show off this! I'd really appreciate it! www.mysimplehomelife.com

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  9. I am in love with this project. I own a single block letter that I bought years ago and have never really known what to do with it. Now I know:)

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  10. This is such a great piece of art! You really have to stop it, because everything you do I'm in love with and my poor little To-Do list just can't handle it anymore!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today :) You had mentioned the chipper drapes - those migrated down to my living room after I saw your new living room drapes from WM. That day I went out and bought your same panels hoping they would look as fab in my room as they did in yours. Bummer, not the right color. But, you did inspire me to liven up my drapes so thank you!

    Also, (sorry this is the world's longest post) the chevron ruffle pillow will be in a giveaway I will be posting soon so check back!

    Shelley

    Shelley

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  11. beautiful...what a great idea!

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  12. 1. I love that owl plate - I have a thing for owls.
    2. I have been seeing those letters around, and love them, but had no clue what to do with them. Thanks for sharing!!

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  13. I love the block art....but seriously, that owl has got the longest lashes I've ever seen. It's got me seriously contemplating a prescription for Latisse! Thanks for the inspriration!

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  14. Your blog is so inspiration! I'm so glad I came across it!

    Christina
    ps - check out my Cory Renee Clutch Giveaway!

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  15. That is a great collection! I like all the negative space around it. Finding art in what used to be everyday- I wonder what they would say?
    -Bethanie

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  16. very clever and I love the shape they made all together

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  17. Stopping by from tator tots and jello--I love this! I have a distinct love for all things typography and you captured this love beautifully! Well done!

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  18. Your owl plate is absolutely DIVINE and I love typography as art. Thanks for a great tutorial!

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Thank You for taking the time to comment! Because of the insane amount of spam comments, I had to stop anonymous comments-sorry for the inconvenience.
Michelle