This project was so quick and satisfying, a welcome creative break in the midst of renovation. I first mentioned in this post that we were thinking of adding a framed silhouette of Lucy to our bathroom renovation, and we did it! Well, kind of. I initially thought I would DIY the actual silhouette, but after finding Olive and Birch on Etsy, I couldn’t not make the purchase. She makes affordable custom silhouettes of your kiddos – pets, too! – and emails you the file to keep the cost down. Of course this meant that I also needed a silhouette of Libby, since our elder kitty is essentially the matriarch of this household. Lucy loves Libby so much, that it only made sense to order the pair!
After ordering the 8″ x 10″ silhouettes for each (here’s the listing for a child and this one’s for a pet), I quickly realized that finding the oval frame would soon become the trickiest part of the process. I had my heart set on a pair of black frames with gold accents, but finding something as affordable as the art itself turned into my biggest challenge. So, DIY to the rescue! Here’s what I did to customize and create our perfect pair of silhouettes:
- Custom silhouette art prints (child and pet)
- Oval or circle black frame
- Rub ‘n Buff
Customizing the Frames
I purchased a pair of black oval frames from Amazon, and I dug through my craft bin until I found my little tube of Rub ‘n Buff (I have the European Gold, also used in this project!).
Using my finger, I rubbed the gold paste along the inner embellishment on the frame, being careful to not push too hard, for fear of slipping. I allowed the first coat to dry for 10 minutes before applying one more, and then I touched up any areas that could use more. I didn’t want a full opaque finish, so I stopped once it looked a little… aged? Antique-y?
Tip: wait for Rub ‘n Buff to dry between coats, otherwise you’ll end up pulling off the previous coat before the next (not that I know this from experience, or…!).
Printing the Silhouettes
My silhouettes were emailed to me within 48 hours of sending Olive and Birch my photos, and aside from a minor edit needed for Libby (for which she quickly accommodated!), they were perfect. I might have, maybe, for a hot second gotten misty. (Lucy does that to me.) I then had my silhouettes printed onto 110 lb matte cardstock from FedEx Kinko’s, and using the frame backer, I traced and cut out my ovals for framing!
Although the initial intent was to hang the silhouettes in our soon-to-be renovated bathroom (The Faux Martha was a big inspiration!), we changed our minds at the last minute and hung Lucy’s in our freshly painted nook – details on that coming soon, btw! We love how the small gold detail looks against the dark walls. Simple. Sophisticated. It makes us smile every time we walk by.
You’ll notice that Libby’s isn’t on the wall yet, because we are saving that one for the walls in the bathroom! We had a vintage cat print in the small guest bath before we ever started renovating (it was the one and only so-called improvement we made to the space), and Lucy would squeal with delight whenever she caught a glimpse. We can’t imagine the joy it will bring Lucy to see Libby’s profile in the ‘new’ space, so we’re hanging tight until the paint is dry and the last towel is hanging on its hook.
Do these silhouettes bring back memories of sitting between a projector and a blank wall? I still remember my grandma tracing my 5-year-old profile against her bedroom wall while I did my best to stay frozen in place! Ugh, I smile just thinking about the concentration I put forth for my grandma; I don’t think I did very well, but I sure did try. These small art additions are as nostalgic as they are personal. They make our hearts so happy.
You can get paper-cut silhouettes and a very similar frame made at Disney World (I’m betting Land too). They are surprisingly cheap for Disney (I think we spent $20 for the silohuette and frame). The artist cuts them out right in front of you in about 5 minutes. Obviously not an easy option for everyone, but the silhouette stands are pretty inconspicuous and despite many trips I didn’t even realize they existed until I read about them online :).
Haha, it’s always good to have options! And that’s a great price.
Can you tell me where that leather ottoman is from?!
It’s this one!
This just reminded me that I already have some silhouettes ofbme and my hubby! I’m going to dig them out, get one of our pup and out them up. That’s for the great diy, I can’t wait to try thebrub n’ buff!