Tuesday, December 8, 2015

DIY Cyanoptype Prints

Remember when I showed you the overall idea for the family room?  It originally had those blue prints behind the couch.

Well Pottery Barn has them for $509 for a group of 4.  $509!?  Um, no.  
Pottery Barn
Mom to the rescue.  She created 7 of them for me using an old printing process called Cyanotype.  You can get 15 sheets of the specialty papers for under $10.  My accounting degree tells me $10 is much better than $509.

Sun sensitive paper (affiliate link)
- Leaves, flowers, etc...whatever you want to make an image of
- A bowl of water


1) Lay out a piece of the sun sensitive paper and place the object on the paper.  If it is windy you can lay a sheet of glass over the object.
3) Place it in the sun.  You can adjust how white or blue the image ends up being by the amount of time you leave it in the sun.
4) After the image sits in the sun, quickly place the paper in water for a minute.  This will stop the development process.
5) Remove the paper from the water and let them dry.  
6) The ends will probably curl so after they're dry place heavy books over them to flatten them out.

Admit it.  You kinda want my mom to adopt you.  I get it.

The original plan was to place them over the couch to pull through some more blue into the room but when I taped up some prototypes I couldn't get the layout right.  2 rows of 3 was too short and 6 or 7 across was too long.  I'm glad I used paper and tape before I started putting holes in the wall.  Thank you Amazon Prime and all the packing paper you send me.

I ended up finding the perfect place for all 7 prints above the wainscoting we did earlier this year.  I love the contrast, repetition and how it pulls the clean lines from the wainscoting up onto the walls.  

Tip for hanging pictures correctly the first time: Put a level up on the wall to get your top point and draw a line.  Then put a dot of toothpaste on the picture hanging hardware on the back of the picture.  Line the top of the frame up against your level line and push the picture against the wall.  It'll leave behind a dot of toothpaste where you can hammer in your nail and leave your walls smelling minty fresh.

What I love about these prints that the $509 Pottery Barn prints could never give me is the sentimental value.  They were made by my parents using nature found in their yard.  Take that Pottery Barn!

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