Time: 1 hour
Materials: Darby Smart Kit
As much as I love taking photos, I’m terrible at displaying them. Perhaps it’s my inability to hang a picture level or because there’s something about frames that seems so permanent, but I have boxes (and bowls) of photos just dying to be seen. If you have framing commitment issues like me, then consider these plaster photo blocks the perfect solution.
If you’ve never worked with plaster before, this project is fairly painless, so take a sigh of relief and keep reading!
To make your plaster, measure out all the ingredients before stirring together. It’s a time sensitive material, so the faster you can stir and pour, the better! 2 cups plaster mix and ~10.5 tbsp water will produce 3 blocks.
Combine plaster mix and water then stir until smooth. Pour directly into the mold until plaster reaches the top. Tap mold gently on a hard surface to remove any air bubbles.
Let plaster firm for about 3-5 minutes, then push your alligator clips into the mold. Make sure to center your clips and have the heads face out so photos display forward when dry. Let dry in mold for 35 minutes or until completely set (overnight).
Remove from the mold and decorate! Mod Podge + glitter is always a winning combination. Once done, add your photos and display. These blocks make it easy to swap out photos, notes, and cards on a moments notice without damaging your pictures or walls.
Confession: I hoard glass bottles. Now, not every bottle I come across meets the criteria for being saved from the recycling bin, but there are several ones that I’ve stashed around the apartment in hopes of crafting with one day. Although it can’t hold a full bouquet, this Bellini mix bottle makes the perfect vessel for displaying eucalyptus or branches.
Start by removing your label. It helps to peel the paper as much as you can then soak the bottle in warm water for about 20 minutes. Use a scrubbing sponge to remove any residue, dry, then touch up blemishes on the glass with rubbing alcohol.
Head to a well ventilated area and start spray painting! To achieve the fading look, flip bottle upside down and paint the bottom and base, moving in a circular fashion. The paint will naturally speckle up the sides of your bottle. Let dry then seal.
Voilà, and it’s only takes 10 minutes to do— perfect if you forgot that Valentine’s day is tomorrow!
Friends, do I have a treat for you! Not only is Courtney Cerruti here to show us how to transfer images, but she is also giving away a copy of her book, Playing with Image Transfers, to one lucky reader!
I had the pleasure of meeting Courtney at Alt Summit SF and couldn’t be more excited about what’s she’s come up with (seriously, her work is amazing!). Without further ado, here’s Courtney’s project:
This transfer process will reverse your image, so keep that in mind if transferring a word or different image (get the bird images here). Transfers only work with a toner based print which means you’ll need a photocopy of your image. This transfer will not work with an ink jet print!
When working with found wood, start by painting a base layer onto the wood. Keep this layer even. If you want a soft painted edge, use a coarse brush to paint your strokes. Allow this layer to dry completely.
Add a second layer of paint over the first. While the paint is wet, place your photocopies image face-down onto the wet surface. Carefully press the image into the paint and smooth away any bubbles or air pockets. Don’t over press or you’ll push all the paint out from under the image and your transfer won’t stick.
Allow paint to dry completely! To test the transfers, tear away a corner of the paper and if the paint starts to pull up, then the transfer isn’t completely dry. If the transfer is dry and ready for the next step, you should pull away the back layer of paper and see part of the image below. There will still be a lot of paper left stuck to the driftwood.
Using a little bit of water and your hand, begin to rub away the paper fibers. Rub softly in circular motions. You can use a wet sponge, but if you are too aggressive, you risk rubbing away the image. Continue adding water and rubbing away paper until entire image is revealed.
Once all the paper is removed, allow the driftwood to dry. If any paper fibers re-appear, you can wet them and gently rub them away or you can use a few drops of olive oil to rub into the surface of the transfer. Using the oil will make fine paper fuzz disappear and it will condition the transfer giving it a satin shine.
Make a collection to display in your home or give as a gift!
To learn more about image transferring, pick up a copy of Courtney’s book here, or enter to win one below!
You guys loved the Alcohol Ink Coaster project so much, that Darby Smart decided to turn it into their February To DIY For Box. Until Midnight tomorrow (Feb 8, PST) you can purchase the kit with all the supplies to make your own coasters for $19. The box ships for free on February 12th, so hurry while supplies last!
On a budget? Enter to win one for free!