Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Challenge Post #2

   So I'm a couple days late on this post...oops...mostly because I wasn't around a majority of the day on Sunday and also because I was traveling back home during the day yesterday. I was going to try and post this last night, but we had another commitment to attend. I'll just have to post an extra project or two this week to make up for it!

   Today's project post is one that I did last Christmas as well. It was a home decor gift for a friend. I originally saw a similar project on Etsy and decided to try my hand at an adaptation! This is the end product!

Shadow box fern decor

    I started with a 12x12 shadow box frame and used the frame backing as the mat for my collage of scrap papers. I then used Cricut Craft room to design the main image and matting. It takes a little practice and manipulation with craft room, but it will work (not sure how other die cutting machines would do...I only have the Cricut Expression). 

   In Craft Room, select a square frame image. I used one from the "Wild Card" cartridge. I then expanded the image to fill the mat. The newer update would not let me do a 12x12 image, but I used 11.30x11.30 and it filled the frame with little to no gaps. I then selected the main image to fill the center of the frame. I used a fern-like branch from the "Straight from the Nest" cartridge as my main focal point. I tilted the image to fit corner-to-corner and expanded it so it overlapped the square frame at multiple points. Craft Room then automatically "welds" the images together. When I cut the welded images on white cardstock, the fern appeared to be part of the square frame and stayed attached. I cut two of these total.

   For the blue background, I lined the fern framed die cut over the frame backing and used a pencil to mark the corners. I then connected the corners with light pencil lines using a ruler. This gave me the work surface area I needed to make my background. I then cut strips of blue patterned papers from my scrap paper pile. I did not measure these. I wanted it to look collage-like with random sizes and lengths. I even let the papers overlap my pencil lines so that no white edges showed up behind the fern. I glued the strips of paper down directly on the frame backing. Once my area was filled, I glued one of the 12x12 die cut frames over top of the blue collage. This was the base of the frame. you could leave it like this if you wanted, but I wanted a 3D type effect with my image.

Tilted camera angle shows the 3D effect of the shadow box

   To create the 3D effect, I used vellum adhesive to attach the second 12x12 die cut frame directly to the glass. I used Glue Dots vellum adhesive sheets and cut them into strips to attached all four sides of the die cut. I considered using Mod Podge matte finish to adhere the paper, but I needed something quick drying and less mess for this project. It might be worth playing with, though, for a repeat project. The key point with attaching anything to glass is to make sure the glass is completely clean and dry. If there is any residue or fibers left on the glass, the adhesive will show it when it's attached (especially using white cardstock). I also cut down a couple vellum adhesive strips to attched the edges of the fern that are "floating" on this die cut. 

   Next, put the shadow box together and KAPOW....a 3D home decor frame! This was a lot of fun to do, and really easy to arrange! It also is another great way to use up some of those paper scraps lying around the work space!

   If you have any questions about this project, feel free to ask in the comments below! Hopefully this will inspire you to start creating fun home decor pictures before the holidays! Until next time:

 Here's to life, love, and creativity!