For as long as I can remember I have always been fairly “arty”. As a kid if I wasn’t sat reading, I was drawing or making something. As an adult I have continued to fill our house with up-cycled furniture, handmade soft furnishings and unique trinkets. I personally love knowing that the things we have in our home no one else in the world can possibly have because they have been one off pieces made by me.
When it came to a family member’s wedding, creating a personalised handmade gift for their special day seemed a great idea – because there’s something really special about knowing a piece has been created especially for you.
I wanted to share a blog post on this, just to highlight that you do not have to be an amazing artist to be able to make your own gifts. It is fairly easy and budget friendly, provided you have a little patience and a couple of hours.
Materials & equipment for the frame:
1 x white 6″x 6″ box frame £1.99 each
1 x birdcage stamp £0.99
1 x pigment ink pad £1.49
1 x pack of buttons £2.50
1 x clear drying craft glue £0.99
1 x sheet of white card £1.25
1 x gold fine marker pen £0.99
All of my materials were bought from The Range however other great stores for arts and crafts at similar prices are The Works, Hobbycraft, Dunelm and Boyes. I am sure there are loads more – these are just the best ones in my local area (Hull). If you have any personal recommendations for your own area please do share them in the comments for others to pick up.
Ok so making the box frame….
I removed the back of the frame and cut a piece of card to size, effectively in exactly the same way as you would if you were inserting your own photograph into it. I then took my birdcage stamp, pressed this into the pigment ink pad and then onto the paper.
NB. you may want to practice this a couple of times on a bit of scrap paper so you get the pressure & print just right. It can be helpful to rub lightly with your index finger across the back of the design to make sure it’s evenly distributed and there are no blank patches.
Next empty your buttons out and lay these in the design you like. Obviously I did a heart, but you may want to do something different like a horseshoe, wishbone, bell etc. I then removed the top button, placed a dot of glue on the card where I wanted it and stuck it down. I followed this all the way around my design until all the buttons were stuck.
NB. Do not remove all of your buttons from the paper before sticking. Leave them in your design and replace one by one so you don’t lose your shape.
Once you’ve applied the buttons you can then personalise the text on your print. I did this with a gold pen around the birdcage to blend in with my minimalist antique gold design, but your design is of course up to you!
Then leave to dry before putting the frame back together with your masterpiece in and polishing the glass front with windows cleaner and a bit of kitchen roll to remove any greasy finger marks.
PS. If you loved this post and fancy something a bit more adventurous… I have done a related post on making matching “Mr & Mrs” mugs. Although you will need a bit more patience and a steadier hand…