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Entries in DIY (27)

Friday
Apr252014

how to: monogram fabric napkins

Supplies:
fabric paint/s, as desired
brushes, as needed
light/medium-weight cardboard for stencils
X-acto knife
masking/painter’s tape
uno natural linen napkins

Directions:
1. Fold the napkin the way you will be using on your dining table, etc. to locate exactly where you want to place the monogram.

2. Be sure to measure and mark exactly where the stencil will be applied on each napkin so that there will be consistency in the placement. We used a square piece of heavy-weight paper which allowed the corners to line up.

3. Pencil the desired monogram design on to the heavy-weight paper and cut out the stencil with a sharp X-acto blade on a protected surface or cutting board.

4. Following the instruction label on the fabric paint—be sure to include an extra layer of paper on the backside to absorb excess paint/liquid—then use a sponge paint brush and “dab” the paint the background color on the napkin surface. Lift off the stencil immediately after painting. Let the fabric paint dry completely before adding on the next layer of color so that the colors don’t bleed.

5. For best results, consult the fabric paint label for care instructions—most likely, laundering by hand or on the delicate cycle will be recommended for the longest life.

Monday
Feb102014

then and now: stainless ball installations

To see how we created this 2010 installation, shown right, go here.

For more inspiration, check out the pops of color in LMNOQ’s SuperPOX installation by artist Laz Ojalde.

Friday
Jan242014

how to: paint DIY self-adhesive wallpaper

Supplies:
pencil and paper
interior latex paint, as desired
paint rollers, for latex paint
Japanese calligraphy ink, for artwork
paint trays, as needed

Directions:
1. To get started, use the handy calculator online to determine the number of
DIY self-adhesive wallpaper rolls needed.

2. For best results, apply the peel-stick paper to surfaces that have been primed and painted with an eggshell, satin or semi-gloss interior paint. Installation should go quickly since the paper is blank—no patterns to line-up.

3. For the diy/artwork, interior latex paints work just fine if a specific background color is preferred—simply paint the wallpaper the same as any other wall/surface.

hint: depending on the color or shade, it may require two coats to achieve an even, blank canvas.

4. To create a composition, sketch pattern/drawing ideas on paper. Once that’s ready, and after the base coat is completely dry, lightly sketch it out on the wall with pencil—we found it’s easier to follow the pattern this way.

hint: after experimenting with different paints, we found that Japanese calligraphy ink is the perfect consistency and has a really dramatic, rich color—this is what was used for the catalog shot shown.

hint hint: if a specific paint color is preferred for the actual pattern or artwork—and latex or acrylic paints are chosen—it will just need to be watered down to a consistency close to milk to help brush flow. Using a latex or acrylic paint may require two or more coats to get the lines more opaque than transparent—testing on a small swatch is recommended for best results.

5. To paint the broad, black lines we used a 2” wide house painting brush. The trick to getting a nice, full, energetic loop is to not stop in the middle of a loop—even if your brush runs out of paint, it’s better to go back and do a second coat to make the lines opaque.

6. Optional: lastly, the drips were a happy accident so we let them happen naturally—then added more for dramatic effect.

Thursday
Jan022014

how to: paint glass vases

Supplies:
clear glass vases
glass paint, paint-thinner
disposable bowls—paper, ceramic, foil
paintbrush
plastic utensils
drop cloth or kraft paper










Directions:
1. Prepare a work area by spreading the drop cloth or kraft paper over a work surface/area.

2. Select a color palette—we found that the darker colors were more successful, more opaque since there is more pigment in the liquid.

3. Pour glass paint into bowls and mix well with a plastic spoon—we also added glass-paint-thinner to make the quantity go farther.

4. Hold the glass vase by the rim and dip it into the bowl of paint.

5. Slowly rotate the vase around the bowl in a fluid movement until it has covered the vase as preferred.

6. Lift the vase and let excess paint drip into the bowl—it make take 5-10 minutes for the paint to stop dripping.

4-6 Alternate process: apply the paint using a paintbrush for a slightly different effect.




7. Carefully hold the vase at an angle equal to the dip-line and blow dry until the paint is semi-dry—about 10 minutes. Hold the hairdryer per the paint instructions—about 8” from the vase. Hint: we found a lower heat setting worked well.

8. Place the vase on a drop cloth or kraft paper so that it dries completely—we used upside down paper bowls.

9. To seal the paint, allow the vases to dry overnight or place them in the oven—follow the instructions on the paint bottle label as they will vary with each manufacturer.

Friday
Jul122013

how it's made: bleached linen panels

1. In a spray bottle, dilute bleach with water—about 2 parts bleach plus 1 part water.
Hint: we used two types of bottles, with two types of sprayers, for variations in the effect.

2. The process gets messy so put down some plastic to protect the floor—either a tarp or trash bags.

3. Hang each french-belgian linen panel as wrinkle free and taut as possible and be careful to not double up the fabric when hanging it since the bleach will seep through and affect the second layer.
Hint: we used clothespins to add weight.

Remember: the bleaching action breaks down particles—in this case the color molecules thereby removing the color—so take this into consideration going forward.

4. To maintain as straight a transition as possible, mark both left/right sides of the panel where you want the gradation to start/end—then start spraying the bleach mixture at the very bottom of the curtain.
Hint: since the bottom will be completely bleached out, use this space to practice the desired look of the final gradation—so you have the technique mastered by the time you get there.

5. Moving from side to side, spray the panel with the mixture going up a bit each pass. When the marked height is near, start spraying more gently. For best results, wait between spays to make sure it’s creating the desired gradation.

6. After the panel has been fully processed, make sure the bottom isn’t blotchy—spraying multiple times may be necessary to get it as white as possible.
Hint: edges of the panels are stitched with a polyester thread which will not be affected by the bleach and will retain their original color. Also, once the color has been bleached out, don’t be surprised if the fabric is a bit more off-white than white-white.

7. Let air dry to stop the bleaching action.

8. To further stop the bleaching action—which could eventually break down the fabric’s fibers—rinse the bleached area with cool water in a large sink or tub.

9. Launder panels per their care instructions, then hang!

Note:
As with any DIY, results will vary so—at your own risk—please proceed with caution.