Friday, March 22, 2013

Stacked Letters

At the beginning of the year, I picked 13 Pinterest Projects that have been pinned in my Project board for awhile and gave myself a goal of completing all 13 by the end of the year. 

I've already posted about my first completed project, the unpaper towels, which also introduced me to my sewing machine. 

This second project has taken nearly as long to complete, mostly because we've had an unseasonably cold winter which has keep me from spray painting. In fact, here we are, first week of spring, and it's snowing! Fortunately, I took advantage of a nice day a few weeks back and sprayed. It only took a few more weeks of procrastination to hang it up, and voila! I'm back on schedule!

The inspiration for my stacked letter art was this photo:
Please do NOT pin this photo from our site. Pin from the original source: Apartment Therapy
When I first wrote about this project, I said:

Stacked Letters. I will be adding a glue gun to my craft collection this year. My first project will be do make a "de Jong" stack for the corner of our great room. I think I may paint the letters silver or purple.

The photo above links to some cute photos of Oliver's nursery. It does not, however, include a tutorial. It was easy enough to buy the cardboard letters. We bought ours at Hobby Lobby, but most craft stores have them.

The first thing we needed to decide is where we were going to put them. My first thought was the great room, but we really didn't have a spare corner, so I considered the fireplace mantle:

Niels vetoed this idea, and I agreed because it wouldn't really be the stacked letter idea, even if I glued the letters sideways. We definitely like this look better. Note: the letters aren't glued yet. You can tell they are a little off kilter as we considered putting it in the window sill. 
This would be a great tutorial if I showed you all the types of glues and adhesives I tried that didn't work. But it's been too long for me to remember which did what! (This photos were taken exactly two months ago!). 

I know that my new glue gun didn't work. Neither did magnets or velcro. Tacky glue didn't hold. Neither did wood glue. The general problem is that most adhesives would work for one letter, but when I tried the third letter, the weight of the cardboard work against it. Over the course of about two weeks, I'd buy a new glue, try it, watch it fail miserably, grumble about it, be mad at the letters for a day or so, find a new glue...rinse, lather, repeat.

Finally, I had the brilliant idea to ask for help. I asked an employee at Pat Catan, a local craft store, and she recommended both Gorilla Glue and Weld Bond. I was skeptical at this point, but tested both.

Wouldn't you know, both worked! (In the photo above, Gorilla Glue is on the left and Weld Bond is on the right). 

As recommended, I let the glue dry for 24 hours before moving it.  

The next day (or so) we moved up to our bedroom, where we thought we would put it in the corner between our We Do gallery and our album shelves (which we still need to post about).

But as we were coming up the stairs, we had the idea of putting it on this corner, across from our heritage gallery.

As it turned out, it did end up in the corner of our master bedroom for a couple months while we worked on other things, like D's printable gallery. See how sad and neglected it looks in the corner?

Finally we had a nice tease of spring. I took full advantage to spray paint a few things. (Good thing I did since it's been cold ever since!) I used Krylon Dual Paint + Primer.

Once the painted dried, we brought the letters upstairs to sit in the corner for a few weeks until I remembered to buy command strips. I really should buy them in bulk.

The letters are actually pretty light compared to a frame so I only used four for the whole name.

And done!

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  1. Love it! I'm sooo into monograms and letters :)
    I'm visiting from T&J's Linky. I hope you can stop by my blog and leave a comment and Link Up!
    ~ Megin of VMG206

  2. This turned out fabulously, Jen! I love how you offset the letters for the two parts of your last name. What a fun new design element to add to your walls! (And my husband swears by gorilla glue...although I'm an E-6000 girl myself.)

    1. Thanks! I'll have to check out E-6000. Where do you get it?

  3. I love personalized art, especially those letters! Great project! Now if only my last name wasn't so long.

    1. lol. I almost made a comment in the post about how this would be an inexpensive project for a friend whose last name is two letters, and quite pricey for another friend, whose last name is 14 letters (no hypens, either!) I'm thinking monograms are your friend?

  4. Such a beautiful, creative project! I love the spot you chose too. Thanks so much for linking this up to Monday Funday!

    Kelly @ View Along the Way

  5. love the final look! And I LOVE gorilla glue.. that stuff is incredible :o) Thanks for linking up to Tasteful Tuesdays! love it! Really appreciate you stopping by my blog! I’m trying to keep in better touch with my linkers/readers… If you already follow me, please let me know I will find your blog on Bloglovin (I’m transferring my follows there)if you don’t follow in any way, would you consider following via GFC or other method?


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