We’ve been in our current home for about a year and half and I can’t believe I’m just now making this project happen! When you first walk in the front door you’re greeted with a miserable, blank, white wall. Not exactly a welcoming entryway so I decided to add a pop of color and some fun photos for our guests to enjoy when they come over. Rather than a traditional framed photo gallery wall, I went with a hanging ‘mobile-like’ display of miniature Instagram photos. The best part is that I designed it so the photo strands can easily be removed and changed out with updated photos and you can customize to work in almost any room!
Cardboard letters (I used the 12″ inch size)
Box cutter or craft knife
Safety pin or small tack
2″ by 2″ photos (I ordered from Postal Pix and used a coupon so I scored 54 photos for just $15.35!)
ModPodge or glue
**My discalimer: I loved putting this project together, but spacing the letters just perfectly and hanging them was a pain in the ass! Use a level, measuring tape, and pencil to make marks of where you need to put nails in the wall for your letters. I used two nails per letter so they were all even and wouldn’t move if they got bumped. Have patience and your hard work will pay off!**
It helps if you plan the layout of your photos first. For the most part I paired mine back to back with a corresponding photo from the same location or event. The amount of photos you have all depends on what you’re spelling and how many on a string you want. My layout was 7 letters, alternating photo strands of 3 and 5, back-to-back photos, coming to a total of 54 photos.
(1.) Start by painting your cardboard letters. I did 3 coats on mine, allowing each coat to dry about 30-45 minutes before painting on the next. (2.) You can skip painting the backs since that won’t show.
(3.) After your letters are completely dry, cut out a small square in the center of the back of your letters. This is where we’ll be running the thread through so you want it close to the bottom. In the bottom center of the letter poke a small hole using a safety pin or tack (use a measuring tape to find exact center). (4.) You should be able to see the pin through the little cut out you made.
(5.)Brush on a thin coat of ModPodge or glue on the back of one of the photos. (6.) Place thread in the center and place another photo on top, sandwiching the thread in the middle. Press down to seal. (7.) Space your next photo about an inch away (it helps if you make small marks on the thread with a marker) and continue process until you have the desired amount of photos on that strand. (8.) Snip off excess thread at the bottom photo and allow yourself about 6-8 inches of extra thread from your top photo. Repeat process until all strands are finished. Lay flat and allow 20-30 minutes for glue to dry.
(9.) Attach the long end of the thread to your sewing needle and push needle through hole in the bottom of the letter. (10.) Pull needle through the small patch you cut out in the back of the letter. Leave an inch and a half to two inches space from the very bottom of the letter to your first photo on the strand. This will ensure that all of your photos hang evenly once the letters go up. (11.) Tape the string to the back of the letter once you have it measured to your desired length, and snip off extra thread. (12.) Repeat with remaining letters.
When you’re all finished, hang it up!