THINK monograms should be reserved for royal family crests or Pottery Barn pillow cases? Think again! A space stamped with your initials doesn’t have to be preppy or pretentious. Text and typography home decor has become wildly popular and can be used anywhere from a sweet nursery to a casual dining room. This thriving trend is one of the simplest ways to add a personal touch to your space. The best part of all is that you don’t have to spend a ton of cash to get the personalized look of a monogram. With a few craft store supplies you can have unique art that fits any space!
I made this button monogram using the American Crafts Studio’s tutorial I found here. With the exception of the frame, which is this stark black number that I bought from IKEA about three years ago (remember the mantra, people: spray paint is your friend), all of the supplies for this project came from Michael’s.
But, I digress. This post is about a rustic monogram that I made a few weeks ago for my mom’s nature-inspired master bedroom makeover. Our starting point for the makeover, which I will cover in a separate post, was a woodsy gallery of artwork featuring some of my mom’s favorite feathered friends. I thought a monogram would add a personal touch to the room and an interesting dimension to the aviary art gallery. At first, I wasn’t exactly sure how I wanted the monogram to look. After a trip to Michael’s, I ended up with the supplies for this:
The first thing I spotted at Michael’s was the rough-cut wooden disc. I knew it would be perfect to use as a base for the monogram. I mean, other than a taxidermy moose head, is there anything better than good old-fashioned tree bark to bring some woodsy texture indoors? After a full loop around the store, I ended up with the rest of my supplies:
mosaic tile (2 packages)
mosaic tile adhesive
acrylic craft paint
self-leveling picture hangers
With a coupon for 50% off any single item, the total for my supplies was around $20. The tile adhesive was pretty expensive ($9). I’m convinced that you could use hot glue to achieve the same result. Live and learn.
STEP ONE: Smashing Tile I emptied the mosaic tiles into a freezer bag and smashed them into pieces using a hammer. If you are going to make one of these, you need to be strategic during this step. Hammering away with reckless abandon will leave you with a bag full of glittery dust rather than large broken shards of tile that you will need to form your desired letter. Hitting one tile at a time from an angle seemed to help the tiles break into the larger pieces I wanted.
STEP TWO: Add Paint I painted the wooden disc with acrylic paint. Since I wanted the grain to show, I watered the paint down until it resembled the thickness of stain. Starting in the center of the disc, I applied paint with a craft brush in even strokes following the grain. In order to avoid a blotchy surface, try not to overlap your brushstrokes during a single coat. It took me several coats of the watered-down paint to get even coverage. After the paint dried, I attached a self-leveling picture hook to the back of the disc by carefully pounding in each side of the hook with a hammer.
STEP THREE: Add Your Letter I used a pencil to lightly sketch the letter “F” directly onto the wooden disc. Using the pencil sketch as a guide, I arranged the mosaic tiles until I had a pattern that looked good. During this step, make certain that the letter is not crooked or favoring one side of the disc because the next step is permanent! Once I was satisfied that my letter was straight and centered, I glued each tile to the wooden disc one at a time. Keep in mind that some of your tiles may shift during the gluing process. Don’t sweat it! The letter doesn’t have to be perfect – a more organic look actually adds to the rusticity of this monogram.
STEP FOUR: Hang and Enjoy! As I mentioned before, this woodsy monogram took its place on the gallery wall in my mom’s master bedroom. Below is a little sneaky peeky of the room. I love how the sparkle of the glass tile compliments its metallic mirrored neighbor. When the rest of the room is revealed, you will see that the grey and brown monogram is a perfect complement to the fabrics we used throughout the space. This is a really quick and easy way to add a personal touch to a wall gallery or any other nook or crannie in your home. And, since it’s DIY, the possibilities for colors and materials are endless. Why not use all of those seashells you gathered on your summer vacation to make a coastal version of this monogram? A DIY monogram for above your home bar is the perfect use for all of those wine corks you’ve collected over the years. Did you inherit a fabulous collection of vintage brooches and earrings from your grandmother? A sparkly monogram hanging above your vanity would be a far better way to display these precious baubles than some old, dusty jewelry box!
For more initial inspiration, check out this article that includes 15 ways to leave your mark around the house! I’d love to hear about the unique ways you’ve incorporated a monogram into your home – please share!
UPDATE: See the rest of my mom’s bedroom makeover here!