January 4, 2019

DIY Nursery Floral Letters

Back in August, I started to party prep for my daughter's first birthday. Granted, her birthday celebration wouldn't be until the first weekend of October but I was determined to be prepared and make the event of the year ;) The very first DIY craft I attempted was making cardboard letters into a beautiful floral display of her name for the welcome table. I'd seen this DIY floating around pinterest and instagram so many times that I figured enough people had done it so I should be able to figure it out. Well, I did but there are a lot of things I wish I had done differently. I'll be sharing the do's and don'ts for this DIY as we go along with the tutorial. So stay tuned ;)

- l e t t e r s  f o r   n a m e  y o u  a r e  d e s i g n i n g -
I bought ours at Target for $4 each, which wasn't too bad considering 
Nova's name is four letters. You can also find them at Hobby Lobby or Michaels. 

- h o t  g l u e -

- x - a c t o  k n i f e  o r  b o x  c u t t e r -

- f l o r a l  p i e c e s -
I decided to keep this craft as cheap as possible by hitting my local dollar tree!

- f l o r a l  f o a m  o r  s t y r o f o a m -
Dependant on how long the name is that you are working on,
you may need between 3-6 styrofoam blocks. I again got ours from
the dollar store but you can also get bigger blocks from a craft store.

- s p o n g e  b r u s h -

- a c r y l i c  p a i n t -

- w i r e  c u t t e r s -

1. Trace out where you would like floral bunches to be placed on each letter. Then, use your x-acto knife or box cutter to cut along your trace. Be sure to only cut on the top, not along the sides of the letters! In most cardboard letters there will be a little bit of other cardboard to keep it from caving. Just take out where your "empty" space will be.

I had to use a "Q" instead of an "O" because they were all out of "O's" - it didn't matter because I was able to cover that up!

2. Paint the letters with whichever color you choose! The reason I suggest using a sponge brush is because when you are working with this type of paper material, it will show brush strokes. In order to avoid that, I dabbed the paint on and it dries mostly flat with just a little bit of visible texture. In corners, I did use a small brush but those strokes aren't easily noticeable. Set aside and allow pieces to dry completely.

3. This is where your girl royally messed up, didn't care and then just continued with the diy. If I were to do this again, I would do it this way: Measure the depth of your letter. Use that measurement and cut your styrofoam so that it is the same depth. Then, using a little bit of wet paint, trace the border of your gap. Place the styrofoam on top of the wet paint space on your letter. When you take it off, it gives you the perfect shape to cut out! 

4. Cut each piece of styrofoam - be prepared with a trash can because this is messy! Use just a dab or two of hot glue on the bottom side of your pre-cut styrofoam and place within each gap of your letters. If any pieces feel a little loose, you can put slivers of styrofoam to fill in any gaps.

5. Grab your wire cutters and begin cutting your floral pieces! Remember that measurement for the depth of your letters? Use that but cut down just a cm or two and allow that to be your guide for how long to keep each stem while cutting. 

6. Arrange your flowers on each letter! This was my favorite part but another place for improvement that you can learn from ;) Instead of pre-arranging, I just went for it. While this might work for you, it didn't so much for me. If there was something I wanted to rearrange, it would just put more and more holes into the styrofoam. So, I suggest pre-arranging and trying to keep as little puncture wounds within the styrofoam as possible! This will help to keep things in place as well. 

7. Use command strips to put onto wall to avoid damage and to allow the letters to be flat up against the wall! 

This whole project took me a total of two hours to complete. It could go quicker if you aren't chasing a baby around (Nova was only 10 months at the time)! Something that I love about this craft is that it really doesn't cost a fortune. With the four letters, it cost me about $25. It was a huge hit at her birthday party and doubled as the cutest nursery decor. Because it is so lightweight, I never worry about it falling and hurting her, since it is right above her crib. Really, it's just the perfect craft ;)

Did you find a better way to do any of the steps while working on your project? Let me know in the comments!

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