Sunday 9 August 2015

Family Photo Letter Collage

It was a year ago this month that my boyfriend and I bought and moved into our lovely house. We spent a couple of months working all-out on the redecoration, taking 2 weeks off work and then using every available weekend to paint, oversee new flooring, assemble furniture and so on. We took a breather as it was coming up to Christmas, and then… never really started again. Most of the house is finished – we just need to paint the bathrooms – but some of the finishing touches haven’t been done. To me, that’s things like putting up coat hooks and mirrors – but there are also a few decorative touches left to think about.

Ages ago I bought some cardboard letters spelling the word ‘home’ and some others spelling out 'Love' from Hobbycraft, and put them away until I could decorate them to display in our new home.

I hadn’t really thought about how I would decorate them, other than with patterned paper or fabric. Then Snapfish, the digital photo printing people, came along with an offer of a voucher towards products from their site – as long as I could craft with them.
That’s not as easy as it first sounds – they have loads of gifts and ready-made products on their site that you can personalise with photos, like photobooks, canvas wall art, mugs, calendars, jigsaws and so on. Most of those wouldn’t give me much to play with in terms of crafting. Their main offering of course is getting your photos printed so I decided to take that as a starting point for my crafting.
I remembered the cardboard letters and hit upon the idea of making them into a photo collage. After all, it is family and friends that make a house a home. This is also a good way to display a lot of photos if you don’t want to have a frame on every windowsill or shelf!
The letters I had were quite small – only about 10cm high – but luckily Snapfish has a product that is just right for this. If you’ve never bought a collage print before I highly recommend it. You can select up to 20 photos, and a print size of 6x4, 7x5 or 10x8 and it will arrange the photos in a collage – making some of them bigger and some of them smaller. If you don’t like the arrangement, you can shuffle and do it again. The largest size is only £1.09 and looks really nice in a frame – I did one of these with photos from a USA holiday I took a couple of years ago, and I also gave one to my parents with photos from a day we spent at Chelsea flower show a couple of years ago. The smaller photos are only 12p for 6x4 or 22p for 7x5.
You can cut these up to make wallet-sized photos or in this case I cut them up to glue onto my cardboard letters.

The 'love' letters came in a cute little box but the 'home' letters were from a different range (they may not even have been Hobbycraft actually) and weren't in a box, and I couldn't find the letter 'e'! Rather than turn my craft cupboard upside down I decided just to use the word 'love'.

This was much faster to make than you might think - I actually did it on the kitchen counter while I was cooking dinner! I simply cut up the collage print, selecting pictures that would fit on each part of each letter and glued them on. I covered the edges with offcuts of photos as you won't really see these, but I didn't want to leave them blank. I didn't bother covering the backs of the letters though.

It looked even better than I was expecting and fit perfectly into one of the cubes of this Ikea shelving unit that we have in the living room. The letters really stand out against the black wood and this now has pride of place in the living room.

Thanks to Snapfish for a voucher code for their site.

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