Friday, December 16, 2011

Holiday Gift Guide - DIY Memory Board

For years, I looked for a way to display my Christmas cards at my house. I wanted them out on display, not stacked on my counter. I found a memory board and a wire tree that was designed to hold Christmas cards. I went with the memory board. It hangs in my hallway, in place of another picture every December. It lets me take a look at all the cards and the cute pictures every time I head down the hall.

I bought the Christmas memory board that I use, but when we were looking for something to hang on my daughter's wall, I learned just how easy they are to make yourself.
1 - Foam Craft Board, will cut to your desired size
1 - piece of fabric, your choice of patterns, large enough to extend a few inches on each side of your board
1 - bag of quilt batting, to cover the board
1 - spool of ribbon or elastic
Craft Glue
buttons or brads or other decoration

Straight pins
Utility Knife

1 - Using a yardstick, mark your board to the desired size. I mark at three points and then placed the yardstick so that it lined up with those three marks. Using a utility knife, cut the board using the yardstick as your guide. We cut ours in half to make two boards.
2 - Cut your quilt batting about an inch larger all around your board. I used a very small amount of glue on the front of my board to hold the quilt batting in place - it will be held by the fabric, but I didn't want it moving around. Don't use too much glue, or you will feel the hardness through the front of your finished board.
3 - Cut your fabric so that it extends about two inches around your board.
4 - Place your fabric print side down on your work surface and then place your board, batting side down centered on top of your fabric. Using craft glue, secure each side of your fabric on the edges. I recommend doing one side and then it's opposite side. Pull the fabric taut when you do the opposite side. Don't pull too much or it will looked stressed. After securing each side, you will have fun "wings" at each corner. I work those by folding the middle in flat to the board, so that the corner is smooth and securing it with glue. Then, fold the two new "wings" in towards each other and secure.
5 - Starting at one corner, place your first piece of ribbon or elastic. Secure at the edges with straight pins. Then, align your second ribbon/elastic. I used two rulers to help me align the ribbon as I worked.
Continue this way, working your way down one direction of the board. Then, repeat going the other way, making a criss-cross pattern on the front of your board with your ribbons/elastic. After the pattern is secured (and you like the way it looks), flip your board over and using your stapler, secure each of the ribbons/elastic. Again, you want to pull them so that they are taut, but not overly tight.
6 - Add your buttons, brads or other decorations (if desired), where the ribbons/elastic meet. Since I was using buttons, I decided to sew them in place, but glue could work.
7 - Add a ribbon loop or a picture hanger to the top of the board.

A memory board can be used to house a select set of pictures, an ever changing array of pictures, Christmas cards, mail, etc. By choosing different types of fabric and embellishments, they can be made to fit in any room.

This post shared at Frugal Friday.