The beauty of this technique is you can create any design you like in any size with minimal impact on your hip pocket. Start out with this ‘smile’ project (top), then continue your experimenting to create a whole range of artworks to adorn your walls.
Gather your supplies Board (plywood, MDF, pine or similar); painting tools; primer; acrylic paint in colour of choice; clear varnish (optional); scissors; ruler; hammer; small flat-head nails; string or yarn in colour of choice; craft glue; sawtooth hanger
1. Choose board size to suit.
2. To hang larger artworks you may need 2 sawtooth hangers or a picture-hanging kit with a wire. Check the packet for the weight rating of selected hangers and purchase accordingly.
Step 1 Paint board in primer. Let dry.
Step 2 Paint board in chosen acrylic paint colour. Let dry. To protect your paint job, you can apply a coat of varnish, if liked, and let dry.
Step 3 Using a word processing program on a computer, type your chosen word (here, ‘smile’) in a font of your choice. Print out your word on paper. For extra-large words, print out individual letters required and cut them out with scissors.
Tip The larger the letters, the clearer the words become once wrapped in string. Alternatively, find basic shapes online, such as a heart, and print those out on paper
Step 4 Position letters on board, using ruler to keep them level.
Step 5 Using hammer, tap nails in around perimeter of letters. Space nails about 10mm apart, and about 5mm apart around tight curves of letters.
Step 6 Tap nails 10mm apart to form a border around your board.
Step 7 Gently tear away paper, taking care not to pull out nails.
Step 8 Tie 1 end of string to 1 nail on border and place a dab of glue on knot to secure it. Let dry. Snip off tail of string with scissors.
Step 9 Keeping string taut, use ‘smile’ picture as a guide and start to zigzag string between border nails and nails around each letter. As you make your way around board, if you aren’t happy with the look of a section, keep string taut, unwind, then redo section. It’s all about experimenting!
Step 10 Continue zigzagging string around nails until you are happy with the final look. When finished, keep string taut and tie a knot around nail. Apply a dab of glue and let dry. Snip string close to knot for a neat finish. Step 11 Affix a sawtooth hanger to back of artwork and hang.