Thursday, 12 July 2012

Faux letterpress blocks

Hey! I think letterpress blocks look super cool, and I've seen so many great ways of adding them to your home decor. But because they're so popular, they can be hard to get your hands on. So, I decided to make my own! And now you can too! ^_^ 

I didn't take any photos of the process, but it is so easy that I don't think you will really need any ^_^

Step 1. Buy some craft letters. I got mine from Spotlight and they were $2 each; you should be able to find them at any craft or hobby store.
Step 2. Get some blocks that are just big enough to fit the letters on them. My blocks are balsa wood and I brought them pre-cut in a pack of six from the craft store. Balsa wood is great for this project because it absorbs paint really well, but you can use anything that you have access to.

Step 3. Glue the letters to the blocks. If you use hot-glue, like I did, be careful not to use too much because if it leaks out from under the letters you will find it difficult to paint afterwards. Also, make sure you glue your letters on backwards! I kept forgetting and putting them on the right way >_<
Step 4. Distress your blocks a bit. I sanded the edges so they didn't have such perfect corners, hit the blocks with the edges of a hammer to leave indents, and made some scores with a blunt knife.

Step 5. Paint your blocks and letters with wood stain. I used a cedar stain. The instructions on the tin will tell you how many layers to do; mine said to do two.
Step 6. Make a wash with black acrylic paint and water. You only need to use a tiny bit of paint for this; I just got a little bit of paint on my brush and then swished it into a couple of teaspoons of water, like you would do if you were cleaning it. 

Step 7. Paint the letters and blocks with the wash. The wash will make the indents and knife marks darker than other parts, which will add to the vintage look.
Step 8. Wait for your blocks to dry and then have fun arranging them in your home ^_^

I am so pleased with how they turned out, I want to make more! My blocks came in at under $4 each, and if you already have wood stain then yours will be even cheaper! 

Do you like them? If you made your own, which words would you do? ^_^

- Lisa x


Rebecca said...

Ooo, nice distressing. Very effective.

Tanya said...

omg you genius!!!! i would probably put them on the normal way though, because no one i know would know what letterpress blocks were.

the part with the hammer sounds fun!!

Lisa said...

Thanks Bec! I really enjoyed the distressing - now I want to do more of it ^_^

Lisa said...

Wow, thanks Omlair! ^_^ I think they would look great the normal way round too - if you make some I'd love to see pictures!

P.S. The hammer part was fun ~_^