There is something about the mystery of a silhouette that draws the onlooker in:
the detail of a life glimpsed through a shadow.
I found these antique prints for a good price some time back
and brought them home to add their elegance to our walls.
I thought they would look especially nice in our office off of the kitchen.
The "pantry" closet that my husband built from old barn wood gives the room
an old feel.
However, they are small;
I needed something more to hang with them,
so I thought perhaps I could try out my own silhouettes.
I had picked up these oval frames at a yard sale,
and decided they were a perfect size and shape
(eventually, I decided to change them to black as well).
I used these supplies for this project.
At first, I thought I would use an image from the Graphic Fairy...
but then I rummaged through my own photos
and found two I preferred.
The first picture was of my oldest children riding out in the driveway together.
Measuring the frame,
I printed the picture up,
enlarging it to a size that would fit the frame.
I then taped the picture to the INSIDE of the glass in the frame...
and, using the fine-tipped permanent marker,
I traced the important details on the OUTSIDE
of the glass.
I repeated this same process on the second frame...
with a favorite picture of my youngest daughter.
I then flipped the glass over and on the INSIDE of the glass,
I used the fine-tipped paint pen to fill in the details,
leaving unpainted areas to help accentuate.
Because the paint would fleck off rather easily from the glass when dried,
when I made a mistake,
I easily scraped it off with my nail,
or just washed the whole thing off and started over again as the permanent marker remained on the front.
Once I had the image the way I wanted it,
I let it dry;
I then sprayed a good layer of permanent varnish on the painted side.
(Spray varnish is the only choice
as painting a varnish would have chipped the delicate painting off.
A clear spray paint would likely do the job as well).
The sprayed picture was sticky for an hour or more,
so I let it set up for a day before adding a background piece of paper
and then the backing
(I used the "Yes" glue to adhere the background paper to the backing).
I also washed the front of the glass where the permanent marker tracing was.
I used a piece of paper towel dipped in alcohol for this.
When I look at the antique silhouettes,
I am amazed at the amount of detail somebody painted in,
the fine lines;
it is intricate!
It was fun creating a couple of meaningful silhouette pieces,
and my attempts made me appreciate the amazing work somebody else had done many years back.
My office now has a bit of vintage
married with my modern vintage...
A bit of graceful fun in a mysterious sort of way,
don't ya think?
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