Sunday, January 6, 2013

[Make] Cork Letter Tack Board

I'm reorganizing my work space and one thing that I really need is a tack board. Nothing big since I only have about 2 feet of usable wall space, but something fun and stylish since my desk is in the kitchen and in plain view... no closing the doors in this office!

I saw these cork letters from Urban Outfitters and almost pulled the trigger.  But then I remembered the cork tiles in my craft stash and decided to make it a DIY project.  The best thing about DIY is that not only can the size be customized (the UO cork letters are on the smaller side) but you can also select the font of your choice.

Click "Read more" for the tutorial

Cork Letter Tutorial

materials needed:
two 12-inch cork tiles, usually sold in a pack of four
computer/printer or copier
tacks (optional)
craft knife
self healing mat
tacky glue

1. 12-inch square cork board tiles. i bought these from joanns with a discount coupon.

2. make a 12-inch letter template. there are many ways to do this, but here's how i did it using photoshop. i created a new document and made the dimensions 12x12 inches. i then chose my font. i decided to use a block letter and used the free font "sf alien encounters" which i happened to have on my computer. i then enlarged the font until it fit my 12x12 inch document. since u.s. letterhead is only 8.5x11 inches, this obviously wouldn't work on one sheet of paper. so i then created a new document (8.5x11 inches) and copied my huge M over. i printed one half of the M on one sheet of letterhead. then the other half of the M on a second sheet. this saved me the time (and paper) of trying to figure out the correct enlargement on the copier. although if you're good at math, shouldn't be a problem :)  also, i haven't tried it, but this technique may work in a word document too...

3. i then tacked on my template to the cork board. 

4. it's a little short in a few areas, so i just followed the lines and penciled in the "missing" areas onto the cork.

5. break out the ol' craft knife and start cutting. my blade is about a thousand years old so it took a little arm muscle, but this wouldn't be a problem with a new blade. 

6. one letter done! now start on the 2nd. yep, you most likely will need a duplicate letter if your cork tiles are thin. my tack poked through the other side, so i decided to double it up. use the first letter as a template and cut out another letter.

7. glue the two cork letters together. i used tacky glue to ensure that any tacks or pins would be able to poke through without resistance (i imagine hot glue may be a little hard for a tack to penetrate?). is penetrate the right word... yikes! :)

8. the finished cork letter!

So I was somewhat productive this weekend! The clean-up and reorg is coming along. Still a long ways to go, but sometimes the hardest thing to do is... start.

Have a nice week!