If you enjoy crafts, do you know what string art is? String art uses a piece of wood with nails and embroidery floss to create a word or a phrase. The nails outline the word or phrase, and the embroidery thread is strung around it. Many people use string art as decoration in their house. String art is also sold for high prices, so being able to make it yourself can save you money. These instructions will teach you how to create a string art wall decoration.
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Step 1: Gather Materials
Before starting this project, you will need to acquire some materials. You may already have some of the materials, but others you will likely have to purchase. Here is a list of the materials you will need and how much they cost.
- $5 or less
- Or borrow one
- Less than $5
- Less than $10
- Or borrow one
- Less than $1 each
- About $5-$10 total
- Find at a craft store (Hobby Lobby or Michaels)
- Borrow if you do not have one
- Borrow if you do not have one
For the piece of wood, you should choose something that is at least 8 inches by 12 inches. I recommend buying a piece of wood that is intended for string art or that is already stained or painted.
Once you have the necessary supplies, you are ready to start the process.
Step 2: Decide Your Word or Saying and Print It
To start, you need to decide what you want your finished product to say. If you are a beginner, I suggest choosing a shorter word. If you can’t think of any ideas, I recommend searching on Pinterest®.
Once you have chosen the word or phrase for your string art, open a word document. When you have the word document open, type the word or phrase you have chosen. Next, change the font to anything you would like. To make your job easier later on, I advise choosing a thicker font; skinny fonts can make it tougher to wrap the embroidery thread around the nails when you get to that point.
Once you have your font chosen, make the font size pretty big, anywhere from 300 to 1,000 points, depending on the size of your wood. You want to make sure your words will fit on your wood with about one inch extra on each side.
After you have decided on your font and size, it is time to print your document.
Another option would be to find a picture of a word and print that off. This is what I did. I found a picture of the word “dream” and then I printed it off in the right size to fit my piece of wood.
Step 3: Cut Your Word or Phrase Out and Tape It to the Wood
Now that you have your word or phrase printed, you can cut round it, leaving about 1-2 inches on the outside of the letters. You don’t need the extra paper and cutting it off will make it easier for you to get your word straight on the wood.
Once you have cut out around your word, you can tape the piece or pieces of paper onto your wood. Make sure it is centered and straight on your piece of wood. Also, you do not want to have any tape on top of the letters because it will be hard to get the paper off later.
Step 4: Hammer the Nails
Now it is time to get your hammer and nails ready. This part of string art takes the longest, but it is worth it in the end. When you are ready, start hammering nails just on the outside edge of the letters printed on the paper, leaving about ½ inch of the nail still sticking out of the wood. Yes, you do hammer the nails right through the paper. Make sure to leave about one ¼ to ½ of an inch in between each nail. Keep hammering the nails around each letter until all the letters are surrounded in nails.
Also, don’t forget to add nails in the middle of letters like O and A. Those nails are also essential, and if you forget them, you may not be able to read what it is supposed to say.
Step 5: Take the Paper Off and Check the Nails
After all the nails are in place, you can take the paper off. Just pull the paper straight up and off of the nails. Check the nails to make sure they are sturdy. When pulling the paper off, you may notice that some of the nails are a little loose. If any nails seem loose, hammer them in a little more.
Step 6: Choose Your Embroidery Floss
Now it is time to use your embroidery floss. You can use the same colored embroidery floss for each letter, or you can use different colors.
Step 7: Tie a Knot and Cut Off Tail
Once you have picked the color for the first letter, tie a knot twice around one nail. After you have tied the knot you can cut off the excess tail.
Step 8: Stringing the Embroidery Floss to Make an Outline
Now you can begin stringing the embroidery floss around the nails. First, you should string it around the outside of the nails so the letter has an outline.
Step 9: Randomly String the Embroidery Floss
Now, randomly wrap the embroidery floss around all different nails, but remember not to string it through the negative space in letters like O and A. Make sure you are being random with your stringing. Your strings will overlap to create the final look. Some of the lines can be very long and some can be shorter distances from nail to nail.
Step 10: Tie a Knot and Cut Off the Tail
Once you think you have enough lines all over in the letter, tie a knot twice around a nail in that same letter. Then, cut the excess tail off of the end. Now you are done with the first letter!
Step 11: Repeat the Process
Repeat steps 6-10 again for each letter of your word or saying. Start with choosing your embroidery floss, tying the embroidery floss to a nail of the next letter, outlining the letter with embroidery floss, randomly stringing the embroidery floss, and then tying the embroidery floss off at the end and cutting the excess tail. Do this for each letter, and pretty soon you are finished!
Step 12: You Are Done - Enjoy Your Art!
When you are done with your string art, you have a decoration for your room, or you can sell it and make money.