Monday, January 16, 2012

DIY: Wipe-Off Calendar

Once I saw this on Pinterest, I knew I had to have one.

And this weekend, I finally completed my own DIY Wipe-Off Calendar!

Billy called it a work of art. It does look nice, though I'm not sure if he was serious or joking. However it is (or rather will be) the first framed item to hang on our bedroom walls in the 2+ years that we've lived here. (I know, I know... I've had good intentions, but I just haven't made decorative wall items a priority.)

Since my calendar will best be utilized in my bedroom, hanging on the wall above my computer, I decided to go with colors that blend with my comforter. I made several trips to Lowe's, Home Depot, and Wal-Mart to collect various shades of paint samples. I know they're free, but I couldn't stand the thought of getting all 35+ at once. I felt guilty even taking just 14 at a time! (I need more than 35 - 7 days x 5 weeks - because I'm also wanting to make a coordinating wipe-off to-do-list to hang beside it. I'm still noodling over that project...)

Last week I noticed Hobby Lobby had their wall frames discounted 50%, so I purchased a simple 12x16 brown frame for just a little over $11.50. I used the heavy brownish board backing that came with the frame for my calendar background. (I didn't want white because it would seem too stark for my color palette.)

The paint sample colors blend nicely with colors in my
comforter, and the brown frame adds to the warmth.

My first step was to outline a 2x2-inch square on the back of each paint sample. I was able to get two squares from the larger ones, so I ended up with several extra paint samples to use with other projects later.

This quilter's tool made measuring my squares so much easier than using a ruler!

Once I had all my squares cut, I spread them out on the background to make sure I had a good range of colors that worked well together.

I felt like I had too many lighter squares, so I
cut some more darker ones and swapped them out.

Then I randomly arranged my squares onto my board backing to test the colors and to see how much space I needed to leave between each of the squares and the sides/corners.

This layout didn't have a good feel, so I tried again...

Still not quite right...

I was getting closer. I ended up cutting a few more squares to swap out. After that, I ended up separating my squares into two piles: red/orange/yellow tones and green/brown tones. Then I laid them out in an alternating pattern, trying to keep a good mix of dark and light - and not placing two of the same shade diagonal from each other. I still ended up with an uneven balance, but I liked what I had and didn't want to mess with it. Again.

As I played around with my squares, I noticed they weren't lining up just right. Once I got the colors laid out the way I wanted, I remeasured each square. I found that many of them were slightly larger than 2x2. I didn't account for the gap between ruler and pen when I marked or cut...

Most pieces got a slight trim.

Finally they were ready to be placed! I rolled tape, stuck it to the back of each square, and moved them around until I got them just where they needed to go. My perfectionist tendencies had to be put aside when, after trying to line up all my rows and columns with my ruler, I realized it just wasn't going to be an exact fit. I even trimmed another square or two to get the fit a little better - then I decided enough was enough. I flipped the board over onto the glass, folded down the little metal tabs, and wiped the various fingerprints and smudges off the glass. Done!

I tested my dry-erase marker and it worked like a charm!

Now, I know the month is half over, but I can't bear to have my calendar go from mid-month to mid-month. And yes, I'll go ahead and fill in the things we've already done - just for the sake of it. I just can't help myself. :o)

I'll add a picture of it hanging on the wall once I get it up there. I promise it won't be another 2+ years!

1 comment:

Foolish Feathers said...

Great job Ashley! I have this same project on my Pinterest list. In fact it was my plan to go to costco this weekend to buy a picture frame set so I can make 2 months at a time. Keep Up the good work!