Sunday, November 15, 2009

Wooden Photo Blocks

I received a request to show how I made these photo blocks:

I thought this would be a good time to share (christmas gifts?). Please forgive my tutorial skills! It is very possible that there is a different/better method for making these, but this is how I made mine.  I got my pre-cut and sanded wooden blocks at a local scrapbook store all ready to use. Then my Mom requested some grandbaby blocks but the scrapbook store had gone out of business. My step-Dad bought a piece of wood that was 3.5" square and 8 feet long (we didn't need that much for 6 blocks). He used a neighbors table saw to cut them in to 3.5" blocks. Then he sanded them and gave them to me for the decorating part.

Selecting which photos to use was the hardest part for me. Once I was able to narrow it down to 4 pics of the older kids and 1 or 2 of the babies (we will add more as they get older), I resized each photo to 3.25"x3.25" and placed them all on one 12x12 sheet in PhotoshopElements and had them printed at Costco. There is also a great website that prints MANY different sizes of photos (3x3, 4x4, etc) Scrapbookpictures.com.


Once I got the pictures, I cut all of them out and used mod-podge to glue them to the blocks. I like to use a sponge-brush and paint the mod-podge on to the block and then place the picture on top. When I would paint the picture it would curl up and it was hard to get it on the block. While the glue is still wet, there are sometimes bubbles on the pictures but once they were dry everything was flat. I glued 4 pictures on the sides of the block and put scrapbook paper on the top and bottom.

These are all four sides of Lily's block and the scrapbook paper on the top of another block

When the mod-podge dried, I sanded the edges of the photos with sand-paper.


Finally, I painted a coat of Aged Varnish over every photo and paper to give it an aged look. *Aged Varnish is optional and you could just paint another layer of mod-podge over everything.* The Varnish also gives the wood a bit of a stained look.


I have seen a book/magazine that has instructions on how to make these blocks, but I can't remember what it was called and haven't seen it at the craft store for a while. Please let me know if you need any other info to make these for yourself!

14 comments:

Foursons said...

I love those blocks! You are so creative.

Erin said...

CUTE! I might need to make these! Thanks for the directions!

Brandi said...

You did a super job. These are just COOL!

April said...

Heather, LOVE LOVE this idea! Jackson is my parent's first grandbaby, so they go GAGA over things like this! Thanks for sharing!

blueviolet said...

What a cute idea and how fun it would be for a gift!

Kmama said...

Very cool!! I might be okay at Photoshop, but I would NOT have patience to sit and do that. Plus mine would never look that good. Great job!

Jodee Leader said...

These are soooo cute! I wish I had your creative bone!

{Kimber} said...

This is a fabulous gift idea...my momma will soooo be getting these!!!
thanks for sharing!

{Kimber} said...

This is a fabulous gift idea...my momma will soooo be getting these!!!
thanks for sharing!

He & Me + 3 said...

I love these...What great gift ideas.

Kim said...

Thanks for sharing Heather! They are sooo cute. I have wanted to make some for awhile, not I just need to do it.

I hope everyone is feeling better!

Kari @ p.s. love.love. said...

Thanks for doing this for me!!! I think it will be something I do for Christmas gifts. I think I'll even make me some. If I can't find blocks at the craft store, hubby has every tool ever made, so we'll be set in making our own.

I'm actually excited to do these. I'll have to post pics when I get them done. Yay. Thanks again - your tutorial was well worth the effort - and it made total sense ;o)

Angie Vik said...

I like your blocks and you did a good job with your tutorial. I first learned how to do these a few years back as a MOPS project. Then my kids did them for a 4-H project. I also made some at Christmas two years for my husband's family. I put a picture of each family unit on a side so we'd be able to think of each other when we're apart.

Our blocks had two inch sides. We put a picture on all six sides. I used Shutterfly Studio to make a six picture collage. One 4 X 6 made all the pictures I needed for one block.

sarah @ life {sweet} life said...

Very cute! Thanks for sharing!