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Posts Tagged ‘antlers’

Well I have been getting a lot of feedback on my newly redesigned master bedroom (thank you for all the nice comments!) and so I thought I’d better get the headboard tutorial up for those of you who are interested in DIY-ing one yourself.  This isn’t so much a tutorial on how to build an upholstered headboard (there are plenty of tutorials out there on that) but more how I handpainted the chevron-ikat pattern onto my plain white headboard fabric.   Since I’d never done anything like this before, I pretty much guessed my way through it so my headboard is far from perfect.  To be honest, I’m thinking about completely repainting it with my leftover fabric.  But, lucky for you, I can walk you through what I did right AND WRONG and you can learn from my mistakes and make yourself something beautiful.  The best part is you can use this fabric painting technique to paint anything, headboards, pillows, chairs, t-shirts, whatever.

Cost: Varies by project.  Mine cost about $18 for the fabric and paint

Supplies:

  • White or other light colored fabric.  I used 2 yards of white cotton twill (from Walmart for $5/yd) for my headboard.  Natural fabrics work best and allow the paint to bleed a little bit.
  • Craft paint in your color choices.  I used a limey green and a tealy blue.
  • Textile Medium.  To mix with the craft paint to make it soft like fabric paint.  (Or you could just save yourself this step and buy fabric paint instead).
  • A medium sized flat/square tipped craft paint brush.
  • A spray bottle with water in it.
  • A water bowl to rinse brushes.

Okay then.  Heres what I did:

1.  I first upholstered my headboard in the white fabric by staple-gunning the fabric around to the back of the padded headboard.  Then I layed my headboard flat on the table to start painting.

2.  Next I got a square tray I had (you could also use a right angle ruler if you have one) and trace the corners of it onto my headboard lightly with chalk.  DON’T use chalk to do this.  It sucked up my paint wherever it was and made some really distinct paint lines that I don’t love on the finished project.  You could try a pencil or just dots of the paint color you’ll be using to give you the guide you need.  I’ll be honest though.  I did this only for the top portion of my headboard and then got lazy and didn’t do it to the rest.  I wish I would’ve though because some of my lines got whompy because I was winging it without a guide.  Thats what I get for being an impatient crafter.

3.  Next, working in small sections, spray the fabric lightly with water.  I would recommend testing the amount of water you need to be spraying with the amount of bleeding you want to get on a scrap piece of fabric before you try this on the real thing.  I didn’t do this and learned as I went.  I got the right hand side of my headboard pretty soaked and then learned that “less is more” and so the left side has less bleeding (which I like better).  You probably only need to spray a section two maybe three times and no more.  You don’t want the lines to become tie-dyed looking, but you do want the colors to bleed slightly into eachother.

4.  Now, holding your brush so that the square tip is on its side (or that the tip of the paintbrush looks like a vertical line), dip your brush into the water and then into the first paint color (after mixing it with the textile medium per the instructions on the bottle).  Then follow your guide using up and down choppy strokes on your fabric.

5.  When you have a section done, switch colors and do the same thing with the next color except push that color into the first color a little bit.  You may have to give it a squirt with the water bottle if the fabric has dried.

6.  The ikat-ness of the design is dependent on how you’re holding your brush so practice first on a scrap piece until you feel like you’re getting the look you want.  Then paint your piece (in my case an upholstered headboard) alternating between wetting the fabric with the squirt bottle and painting on the lines in an up and down stroke.  (You can see in the image below where I wet the fabric too much and the paint bled a little more than I would’ve liked.)

And thats what I did!  I would like it much better I think if I did it again and really took my time.  But, hey, not too shabby for a first try I guess.

Anyway, hope you enjoyed the tutorial!  Learn from my mistakes and go do your own! 🙂

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Finally!  I’m back to post my Pinterest challenge project!  I was away for a funeral for a while and had to get back to regular life and catch up and of course it took me much longer than I wanted it too.  Anyway…

So I’m totally into this faux taxidermy trend.  I kind of love it and hope it sticks around forever.  In Sawyer’s nursery I have a pair of antlers (not faux…they’re the real deal) that I bought at a thrift store for $4 and spray painted white.   This is a pic from this post:  (Wow!  I need to get pics posted of Sawyer’s completed room.)

I also found a little porcelain cow bust at a thrift store for $3 that is now hanging on the wall in my master.  This is a pic of it from this post:

So even though I already have a couple of animals hanging on my walls, I couldn’t help but want to get some more!

For the Pinterest Challenge I went into my DIY folder and purused my past pins.  When I saw this image

I thought it would be the perfect project!  I was fully aware of course that my DIY version would most likely be uglier than this but I thought I’d give it a shot anyway.  Maybe the ugliness would add to the charm. 🙂

So off to Home Depot I went in search of some wire.

Heres the breakdown:

Cost:  About $6

Supplies:

  • Plenty of 16 Ga. Dark Annealed Wire (I bought the 2lb reel).  OKay.  So now that this project is done, I can tell you I HATE THIS WIRE for this project.  It is too stiff and hard to shape and really beat up my hands and fingers!  I suggest a covered clothesline wire or floral wire.  I saw some colored floral wire at the Dollar Store and am going to try it out again with that I think.  But, for the sake of accuracy in the tutorial, I used the 16 Ga. wire from Home Depot for this project.
  • Wire cutters.
  • Pliers or jewelry tools are helpful for twisting the wire ends.
And thats it.  Simple and cheap.  Now the fun part…
1.  The first thing I did was make a wire circle to use as my base.  Depending on how large you want your animal head you can determine the size of your base.  I also was sure to add a little loop up at the top of the base for hanging.
As you can see from the pics above, this wire made it hard to keep smooth and straight so my faux deer head turned out a lot more wobbly looking than the inspiration pic.  I just convince myself it adds charm.
2.  The next thing I did was build a neck.  I used 4 equal lengths of wire and attached them to the base.  I curved them slightly so that they weren’t sticking straight out of the base but concave in a bit as a neck of an animal does.  Then I made another circle (slightly smaller than the base circle) and attached it to the ends of the neck wires.
3.  Then I started building the head.  Following somewhat my inspiration pic, I built the head using curving pieces.  First, one coming up from the neck to form the chin piece, then two others curving down from the top of the head to the chin piece.
4.  Next I added a long piece of wire that connects all three of those new parts together.
5.  Then I added another wire that curved a bit and came down forming the front of the face from the base of the neck to under the chin.
6.  See how its starting to kinda look like something?  Even if it is a little whompy.  😉  Then I added a couple more curvy piece to either side on the center wire on the face and made and added ears.  From here you could probably make this into a variety of different horned creatures.  Although I originally wanted to copy the inspiration image and make swirly cool horns like that, after several attempts, it just wasn’t working for me and I decided to make my little guy a deer instead.  Maybe if I had used easier wire, I could’ve done it.  Meh.  Another day…
7.  Next I made the antlers.  To do this I took two really long pieces of wire cut to the same length.  I folded them in half (at the same time), and started forming the “branches” up the sides of each.  Then I pulled them apart and attached them to the top of the head inside each ear.  I had to mess with them a bit to get them to look somewhat symmetrical.
8.  Then I stepped back and took a look and decided the face needed a little more so I added a cross wire across the nose of the face and also decided to give him nostrils.   This was the finished result!
What do you think?!  Like I said, not nearly as pretty as my inspiration Pin but I love him nonetheless. Just take my advice, get some really good wire cutters and really pliable wire if you decided to do this one!
And thats it!  Thats my first Pinterest Challenge project!  YAY!  I’m sure there will be many more to come.

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