Nail and String Art Tree

This piece of DIY decor is inspired by a wedding escort display highlighted on, which I noticed on Pinterest, of course. I was quite taken with the opportunity to create a large scale piece with texture and a feature color at minimal cost.

I loosely followed Green Wedding Shoe’s DIY String Heart instructions:

  • Fetched a piece of plywood from the basement and stained it
  • Drew a tree on paper, cut it out and taped it to the wood
  • Hammered nails along the outline of the tree
  • Strung teal colored string around the nails in no particular pattern

Hammering the nails became a several-day project, to allow my hand to recover in between hammering sessions. Easily the worst part of this project – everything else was easy.

Total Cost: $15 (for stain, 2 boxes of nails and a ball of string)

This baby now has a prominent home above my mantel. And… a newly discovered bonus role as a Christmas Card holder!



Painted Nursery Mobile

I’ve seen quite a few nursery mobiles floating around Pinterest lately, and given my recent obsession with circle-shaped decor elements, I was particularly drawn to this DIY Better-Than-Paint-Chip Mobile and Stylish Nursery on the Cheap Mobile. Both are made essentially by hanging strings of circles from an embroidery hoop. I was drawn to the double-hoop system of the paint chip mobile, and how the circles were strung, but preferred the more sparse/clean appearance of the cheap mobile.

Challenge: I didn’t want to make the circles out of paper or something that probably wouldn’t last long = no paint chips.  I really wanted to make a mobile with felt circles, but I couldn’t find any stiff felt in the right colors.

Solution: I found and purchased 3 packs of thin wooden circle slices in assorted sizes at Pat Catan’s. I painted them in various shades with paint I already had, and used a thumb tack to push two holes in their centers (like buttons!). I made “columns” by stringing together several slices of the same color, plus one red slice. I tied each “column” to the embroidery hoop.


Final Result:


Now that I have another embroidery hoop, string and stain, I could make another mobile for the cost of circle slices or $6.

Twine-Wrapped Initial Letters

Wrapping those standard cardboard initial letters with string or twine is a great way to spruce them up while adding texture. We couldn’t hang anything up at our wedding reception, so I painted extra original doors from my century home and placed them behind the bar. With the addition of a homemade ribbon garland (I tied strips of ribbon to a length of twine), poms and our initials, the doors transformed a simple bar top into a welcoming locale.


Photo courtesy of Wilmack Photo.

I followed this Yarn Covered Monogram Letter tutorial fairly closely, except instead of yarn , I used twine sourced from Home Depot.

Challenge: Because of the twine’s thickness and the shape of the letters, a different wrapping strategy was needed for each letter to prevent massive unevenness.

Solution: For the flat ends of the letters, I cut small strips of twine until I had enough to tape over the ends of the letter. Then I followed the tutorial wrapping instructions. My method left small gaps at the corners, but because the base letter and the twine were the same color, they weren’t noticeable.

Total Cost: $15