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Friday, July 23, 2010

Organization + Craftiness = Fabulous Photo Strings

 Okay, I'm still not sure about the name, but the project is great (at least in my humble opinion)!!

Ahhh, the digital camera. Bringing the power of fabulous photography to the world over. But, you know the drill: with great power comes great responsibility. At least the mounting digital pile of photos to be sorted on my hard drive seems like a LOT of responsibility. The 10 hikes since the sun came out, the 20 crafted creations I've attempted, and the funny family shots are just taunting me to be sorted, starred, enhanced, labeled and possibly printed? Well, if you need a little push to get through all the bad to get to the good-enough-to-be-printed, then here are two little projects to get you inspired.
Inspiring Photo Strings:
This project is fun and simple and can be adapted in a variety of ways to create a little space for photo-inspiration anywhere you are.

 Tools: Small magnets (I like the super-duty kind, but keep them away from credit cards and computers!), 1 yard of fabric, sewing machine (or you may hand sew or glue if it's easier for you), and safety pins.
Step 1: Cut a strip of your fabric that is double the width of your magnets plus 1/2".
Step 2: Fold the strip in half lengthwise with the wrong sides out.
Step 3: On your sewing machine sew, the strip into a tube 1/4" from the fabric edge.
Step 4: Put the safety pin in one end of the tube. Insert the pin into the tube to pull the fabric through making it right sides out.
Step 5: Remove the safety pin and make a small knot in one end.
Step 6: Insert one magnet into the other end of the tube and slide it down until it hits the knot.
Step 7: Tie another knot on the other side of the magnet.

 Step 8: Continue up the strip of fabric tying knots around magnets. This way the magnets will not slide down and become clumped in one area.
Once you have created a string or two of magnets find an inspirational place to hang your new photo display. Artfully hang your strings with tacks, either hanging straight down, or in swags. Now display your photos, clippings from magazines and letters by attaching them with other decorated magnets to the secret hidden magnets inside the strips. Voila, simple inspiration. Place them by a sewing station, in a grey window, or hang them in a tall doorway for a few fun places.

Framed Up Cork Boards:
For a slightly more ornate corkboard than average, use smaller picture frames in a creative arrangement, replacing the glass with cork sheets.
Tools: Square cork sheets (available at department stores in 4 packs), thrifted photo frames, paint of your choosing, hot glue gun and glue, craft knife or scissors.
Step 1: Remove the glass and backing from the photo frames. Use these as a guide to cut down the cork squares so they will fit cleanly into the frames.
Step 2: Clean and paint the frames a color of your choosing. Choose funky different frames so that when painted you will have an eclectic, but unified, look.
Step 3: Take the hot glue gun and put a bead of hot glue along the inside of the frame (once it's dried according to manufacturer's directions of course!). Insert the corkboard before the glue has cooled.
Step 4: Return the backing on the frame. Hang the frames in a dynamic grouping. Tack inspirational photos into the corkboards with a common theme or color palette to help unify your inspiration zone.
As the weather turns cool, parading your sunny days in these fun displays will help you keep motivated till the next warm streak comes along. The best part is these photo shows are easily changed, so the next time it's hot and your pining for the rain, you'll know what to do!

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