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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

How to Make a Papier-Mache Big Letter

Here's a homemade monogram made with cereal boxes salvaged from the recycle bin. Yes, essentially, it's made of garbage!

Cereal box
3 oz. Dixie cups
White glue
Poster board
Newspaper (cut into 1” x 4” strips)
Paste (1 c flour, 1-1/2 c water, 1 T salt, 1 t vanilla)
Acrylic paint

Step 1. Find a font that you like and enlarge it such that it takes up most of your 8-1/2” x 11” page. We used Cooper Black in 720 pt. for the letter “P” and Berlin Sans FB Demi in 780 pt. for the “C.”  Print and cut it out.

Step 2. Trace the letter on one side of the cereal box and cut it out. This will be the top of your letter. Repeat with the other side of the cereal box for the bottom of your letter.

Step 3. Place the bottom of your letter on the table. Apply glue to the rim of 3 to 4 evenly spaced Dixie cups and affix them to the bottom of your letter. Apply glue to the bottoms of the Dixie cups and affix to top of your letter. Let glue dry.

Step 4. Cut poster board into 2-1/2 inch strips. Tape the strip to form the side of the letter.

Step 5. Add flour to a large bowl. Slowly mix in water with a fork. Add salt to prevent mold and vanilla if you don’t like the smell of the paste. Your paste should be slightly runnier than glue.

Step 6. Dip a newspaper strip into the paste, remove most of the paste with your forefinger and middle finger. Place the newspaper strip on your letter. Repeat with newspaper strips, overlapping each additional piece with the last piece, until the entire letter is covered. (Warning: The salt in the paste irritates dry skin. We found out the hard way from a teary-eyed Phoebe.) Turn your letter over and cover the other side with newspaper strips. Let dry in the sun. Then do a second layer of papier mache and let dry.

Step 7. Cover your letter with two coats of acrylic paint. Let dry.

Phoebe hangs her letter over her headboard. Chloe keeps hers on her desk. I want one for my book shelf. Ooh, I’m imagining NEST on my mantel and I’m envisioning a series of Zs over my bed. The possibilities are endless!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you this looks like great fun and cannot wait to get started.