Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Silhouettes



Hello dear readers!

I've been working on a project for a little while. The ladies at my church asked if I could create a project to share and teach the other women during a special day we dedicate to making crafts. I said sure! I gave them several choices of things I have made and things I wanted to make. They picked these silhouettes!

I've seen the silhouette idea floating around blogland for awhile now. People make them for pictures, pillows, blankets, pretty much anything goes with a silhouette. They're timeless, I remember my mother making one of me when I was little!

So, I got started.

Phase 1: The Hanging Apparatus (heehee)

I found these little wooden plaques for $1 at Michaels.


I painted the edges white and waited for them to dry.


I found some lovely paper and traced over the top portion of the plaques. Cut it out, used some Mod Podge to glue it on.



After everything dried, I took some sandpaper to smooth away the rough edges (for $1, there are a lot of rough edges). I also sanded over the edges of the paper, to make it a little torn and flush with the wood. I like that look, but you don't have to go that way if you don't enjoy it!


After that was done, I took some distressing ink and rubbed it over the edges of the paper and the upraised portion of the plaque to give it a nice aged look. Then, I took my trusty drill and drilled a whole in the middle (just eye-balling it) and installed my awesome knobs from Hobby Lobby.


Phase 1: Complete

Phase 2: The Silhouettes

Now, here's a tricky part (at least, for me). I couldn't find any pics of my kids I already had that worked, so I had to make them stand for me while I took a picture of the side of their head. Not easy. Here are some little hints for getting a good silhouette picture:
  • Make sure you get crisp lines. Take the picture with a clean background (white wall, sharp focus, etc.) This will make it much easier to trace onto your paper.
  • You can get several angles of the sides of your kids heads. I liked to see their eyelashes and their chin countours. Make sure you have your camera angled the way to get the most out of the outline. All those little details you love about your kids (their eye color, dimples, etc.) will disappear with a silhoutte. Only the outline matters.
  • Make sure their hair is how you like it (combed, spiked, curled....) so you can capture the "personality" of the outline.
  • The silhouette will be a certain size so make sure you take it big or small enough to the size you want. I wanted mine to fit a 5 1/2" x 7" space, so I had to enlarge my girls heads a bit and shrink my sons to fit the space.
(You can see here how the front of her face isn't in focus like her ear is. Sigh. I learned a lot with this project)

After I had the pics the right size, I printed them out on regular printer paper. I cut around the face and made a nice little curve under the neck. I traced them again onto black cardstock and ta-da! A silhouette!

I used a little tape to adhere them to my white paper and then got to work on my frames.

These frames I purchased from the $1 store, so they aren't the best quality, but they work.

I took one and rubbed candle wax of the corners and some of the surface. I wanted the wood to show through, and thought I would try this method.


After rubbing the wax around the frame, I spray painted them with a little ORB.


After the ORB dried, I took some sandpaper and sanded off the candle wax. It worked ok, but I think I could have achieved the same look by simply sanding (minus using the wax). I'll have to try that method on a bigger project.


Once all the frames were ready, I took some off-white ribbon and cut lengths of about 3 feet. I made a little knot in the middle and let the edges hang over the ends of the frames.



I simply used some hot glue to stick the ribbon on the back of the frame. The initials of my children's names are stickers I found at Michaels.

I think it turned out quite well!


*Please see my sidebar for fun link parties I join during the week!


Photobucket



16 comments:

  1. Meg, it's so cute! I think that's such a neat craft to teach the other ladies. Good job!!

    Nancy

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Meg for visiting my blog! Great project post. Have a good one.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Those are fabulous Megan! I can't wait to make them at Super Saturday! Still planning on Thursday?

    ReplyDelete
  4. Love the silhouettes, Meg! Came out great!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love silhouettes! These turned out super cute!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Beautiful! I want to see the other ones, too!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Very cool! Did you know you can sharpen up the lines of a photo on picnik.com? It helps on unfocused pics :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Meg, this is so cute. I wish I had done something like this when my boys were young. The plaque and ribbon adds just the right finishing touch.
    I will check out your party too. Thanks for visiting me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Meg! I just found your blog and am your newest follower! I really love this project. You did a great job especially on the silhouettes. :O) I'm gonna go snoop around the rest of your blog now hehe. ~Billie Monster

    ReplyDelete
  10. Looks great! I love how you hung it!

    I did a similar project but in photoshop and I couldn't figure out how to include the eyelashes. I even tried to draw them in. Thanks for the tip on the angle!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love this project....can't wait to try it out!

    ReplyDelete
  12. It turned out fabulous, Meg! I'm sure the ladies at the church had a great time as you taught them the how-tos.

    Thanks for joining my party. I would love to have you join me for one, or all three, of my parties each week.

    Liz @ the Brambleberry Cottage
    http://thebrambleberrycottage.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  13. this looks amazing! love what you did for the silhouette and how you modge-podge the hanging plaque as well!
    gorgeous!

    thanks for linking up!
    kellie

    ReplyDelete

I would love to hear from you!