Saturday, December 8, 2012

Julie's Bedroom: DIY Silhouette Art

We've always loved the sweet, personal sentiment of silhouette art:

via Elle Decor

via Lonny Mag

via Lonny Mag

We thought about getting some custom silhouettes made for Julie's master bedroom, but figured this was something we could tackle on our own.  We looked at a few online tutorials, but most of them were really involved with tracing, shadows, etc.  Like most of our DIYs, we decided that we'd figure it out as we went.

We started out by taking profile shots of Julie and Clay.  Don't get too crazy with taking a really high quality photo-- it won't matter in the end.  You just want to make sure that the profile is clear and not blurry (and that you don't have a weak chin, according to Clay).  We then printed the photos on our home printer using photo paper:

Please ignore how creepy those look.  This is only step two and we promise it gets better.

Next, cut out the silhouette using an X-Acto knife or small scissors. We couldn't find our X-Acto knife, so used the smallest, sharpest scissors we could find (which ended up being hair trimming scissors).  We were careful to include all details, like Julie's eyelashes and her ponytail holder:

Next, paint the cut-out using black (or whatever color you prefer) acrylic paint.  We flipped ours over and painted on the white side, but we don't think it matters which side you choose:

When painting, be sure to make your strokes as smooth as possible.  A foam brush would probably be best for this.  We ended up doing a few coats to make sure the finish was smooth.

At this point, and we don't know why this was so shocking to us, but we couldn't stop laughing about how much these look like Julie and Clay.  We know this is the point of a silhouette, but still.  We weren't expecting this much DIY accuracy...

We let the silhouettes dry overnight.  The next day, we used double-stick tape (we were worried glue would bubble) to attach them to ecru card stock and then popped them into frames that we found at Target.  The picture isn't totally clear, but they're a distressed blue-gray and we LOVE them.

Right now, the silhouettes are on Julie's dresser in her master bedroom, but might end up in this nook, as we're making some changes to that space.

If you're looking to give meaningful Christmas gifts, we think this is a great idea for grandparents, parents, or a newly married couple.  Happy weekend!


  1. Can't believe how professional these look. Love them!

  2. great idea!! the only change i'd make (for newlyweds esp) is to have the silhouettes face each other. then again, i'm no style diva like you guys! love this blog.
    - sim
    (penn english, one cohort below sarah)


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