As mentioned in a previous blog post, I had bought some pretty butterflies from Belle Beau ready to begin work on two wedding signs, ready for a campsite wedding! The wedding party are having the evening event on the campsite, and are decorating the marquee with shabby chic items .... bunting & afternoon tea, serving sherry and having an overall vintage feel to the day.
My mission was to make two signs .... a favour buffet sign and one to mention the wedding party. The other part of the brief was to make them water proof. No mean feat when your usual medium is paper!
The butterflies were my starting point ...
Kelly at belle beau has made some beautiful art work using butterflies, and it got me researching paper butterfly images online .... there are so many beautiful designs out there, so once I had enough inspiration I got to work.
I called my Dad to see what spare wood he had lying around ... luckily for me he had some pieces of old floor board, so he sent them over to me.
And so the work began.
I cleaned to wood up with a little water and an old flannel. It was mostly dust, so it didn't take long, and I made sure not to get too much water on the wood, as I didn't want it soaking in. Dad kindly drilled a couple of holes in the top, so that they could be hung up on the campsite.
Next, I used some watered down Laura Ashley paint in Ivory, and gave both pieces a light wash all over. It was important that the wood had a white colour to it so that the papers would tie in, but that you could still see the wood grain through it. After drying for a day, I used some Americana Multi-purpose sealer on it, just to protect it from water and to protect the paint itself. Laura Ashley does such a lovely matt paint, that I didn't want it ruined with dark marks and smudges.
Once this was all dry, I got to work on the trim for the outside, which would create the frame. I used some old white lace dress trim, that I have had knocking around for a while. I cut the trim longer than I needed, to allow for lining up and mistakes! But I needed it to be a cream colour, so I recycled two old teabags in some hot water, soaked the trim for a minute, then got it out and squeezed the excess water, and then let them drip dry.
Once fully dried, I had to iron them back into shape! This was pretty tricky, but flattening the trim out at this point made attaching it so much easier.
I glued around the edge of the boards with some Hi-Tack glue- its my go to glue for most things, and I find it holds really well.
Once this was adhered, I came to the hardest part of the project. The text. I am not too happy about how it turned out, I think if I was doing this again I would re-think the text, and perhaps purchase some wooden lettering to go on the board itself. But this time around I printed the text onto cream card, and distressed the edges. The bride wanted a script style text, so this was the best option. I used foam pads to stick them on, and coated them in Americana Duraclear matt varnish so that it would be more resistant to rain.
Next came the most fun step- make the butterflies come to life. I stuck them using high tack glue, and again coated them in matt varnish. You can't see the coating that way, but they are more protected.
The last part of the project was to make the handles- I used some pewter wire, and wrapped it in lengths to create a pliable handle. I then used a sharpie marker pen as a tool for creating twists, which would mount little butterflies to make them look like they were flying. :)
The overall effect is lovely, albeit with unsatisfactory text!! I had lots of butterflies left over too. .... so will be using them on some luggage tags for the same wedding, as favours for the ladies .... so come back tomorrow and check out the post about vintage luggage tags :)
Happy Sunday evening all X