For my friend Sharon’s bridal shower last week (who is one of my most ardent supporters of this blog btw!), rather than buying her a gift that she might not need or want, I decided to make her one instead (one hopefully that she would like). For my own wedding, I had made a 3D shadow box with my husband’s and my initials with our wedding colors for part of the wedding decor.
Everybody loved it so I thought I’d make a customized one for Sharon with her wedding colors as a gift.
Here’s how I did it.
Materials I already had:
Pad of various patterned paper
Paint brush (not pictured)
Pipe cleaners (not pictured)
New materials purchased at AC Moore:
Wooden letters “S” and “N” in three different sizes (I wanted a fourth size but the local AC Moore was out of them :/)
Acrylic paint (various colors in Sharon’s wedding colors)
1. I had to figure out what colors I wanted to color the wooden letters and what pattered paper I wanted to add onto the top surface of each letter. Her wedding colors are yellow and gray and her bridal shower colors were yellow and blue so I decided to mix and match the three colors. This is where the “design” aspect comes in as you need some forethought here for the overall color scheme and design of the final piece. Here are some paper/paint pairings I come up with before moving onto the next step.
2. Once I figured out what color paints and what patterned paper I wanted to use on each letter, I got to work painting.
3. As the paint was drying, I traced the surface of the wooden letters along the “matching” paper. Make sure you put the letter on the backside of the paper backwards so that when you cut the paper, the patterned side is right side up.
4. Then I cut and pasted the paper onto each wooden letter. I found that tacky glue works much better than a glue gun as the glue from the glue gun doesn’t flatten and creates lumps under the paper. Also, have a light hand with the tacky glue as too much glue can make the paper ripple as it dries!
5. Now time to make the ampersand… For my own shadow box I made the more simple and conventional ampersand “&” but for some reason (maybe because I used gold on some of the letters for Sharon’s shadow box), I wanted to go for a more fancier ampersand and here’s what I came up with. After making the shape, I painted the white pipe cleaner gray to go with the color scheme.
6. Next, the hard part was figuring out how the letters were going to sit on top of each other so that everything looks harmonious and balanced. This is the second design aspect that determines the overall look. After you figure that out, glue each letter on top of each other and glue the letters and ampersand onto the inside surface of the shadow box. I ran into some trouble during this part due to the fact that this particular shadow box had an inch of Styrofoam under the burlap surface which didn’t allow enough depth for all three letters to fit inside with the top closed. The Styrofoam had to go and created all sorts of problems (think, tiny Styrofoam pieces flying everywhere…). But after the Styrofoam was gone, everything fit nicely…
The final product:
I love how it turned it; hopefully Sharon does too :) Happy wedding, Sharon and Nate! So excited for you guys!!