Thursday, August 21, 2014

DIY // Silhouette Art

My first major DIY project - even before my mantel makeover, starburst clothespin wreath or burlap canvas family silhouette art - was making silhouettes of my kids. Something I had wanted to do for a very long time but never had enough gumption to create until now. The first project that gave me confidence and opened my eyes to the whole entire creative world of DIY in the first place.

I couldn't find exactly what I was looking for online, so I made everything up as I went (how I roll most of the time with craft projects). And I seriously love how they turned out. If my house ever goes up in flames, these are the first things I'm grabbing besides the kids!

Mine are all 12x12 size with beautiful shabby chic frames (an early birthday gift from my photographer/parents), but you could cut and make them whatever size, style, color combo you'd like. Here's a quick tutorial if you want to create silhouettes of your own.

What you will need:

- 8x10 B+W cardstock printed silhouette photo
- 12x12 paper for the background (I chose woodgrain scrapbook paper from Joann's)
- 12x12 black cardstock paper for the silhouette (or any color of your choice)
- Large and small scissors
- Foam mounting squares
- Nice frame for display


1. First off, place your subject in front of a light background and take a head and shoulders photo of them from the side. Take lots of pictures and vary the sides (left or right) to see which one you like best. For girls, try different hairstyles too. (In my first set of photos with Brooklyn, she wore her hair down and her silhouette looked like George Washington. Ha! Next time I put her hair up in a ponytail, which is pretty typical for her these days, and it looked just like her.)
2. Print off your favorite picture onto 8x10 cardstock paper. Carefully cut out the subject's head and shoulders. 
3. Using a pencil, trace the cardstock silhouette onto black cardstock paper. Carefully cut out the new silhouette with a small pair of scissors, making sure to add little features like cowlicks, ponytails, bows or eyelashes. 
4. Place foam mounting squares on the backside of the black silhouette and adhere to your background page.
5. For the finishing touches, write your child's name and age with a fine-point permanent marker under the silhouette. Place final piece in a beautiful frame to display, and your silhouette is complete. This would look great mounted onto a burlap or acrylic canvas too!

Something you will enjoy - and possibly even pass down in the family - for many years to come.

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