botanical printed panels... doesn't that sound like a really fancy home-decor-ish project? really, it is just scrap wood covered in paper and stamped with leaves from my very own backyard! i'm really proud of this one. it turned out pretty, filled up some empty wall space, and best of all was completely free! really!
it all started with some panels i saw in the store that were a gorgeous shade of blue and chocolate brown. individually they weren't too terribly expensive, but i wanted a grouping of three, and of course thought, i could make that.
we had some scrap wood leftover from a shelf my hubs made, already cut down into almost-square panels... just the right size but also not-perfectly-square enough to look interesting together. i sanded them down a tiny bit since some had old paint on them and so that the edges wouldn't rip the paper.
plain ol' scrap wood:
then i took my ginormous roll of thick brown kraft paper (originally found in the paint section of home depot, and since then used for ev-ery-thing imaginable) and wrapped each panel like it was a christmas present, sticking the back down securely with packing tape:
then i trouped out into the woodsy area behind our home and gathered several pretty looking leaves and sprigs of leaves in various sizes. gathered up a couple different colors of acrylic craft paint (the cheap stuff!) and a sponge stencil paint brush (about $1 for 2 or 3).
then i gently dabbed the paint on the back (the veiny part) of the leaves, pressed it down onto the paper, covered it with wax paper, and rolled my brayer (from rubber stamping) over it a couple of times making sure to hit all the pointy little edges of the leaf. be careful in this step not to let the leaf slide around! then remove the wax paper and gently peel the leaf off the paper.
after you've stamped with one color, you can let that dry for a little bit (cheap crafts paint dries quick!) and then layer on more stamping with multiple colors. each leaf can be used 2-3 times before it is too soggy. you can mix your own paint colors to have slightly differing shades, and when you use the same leaf in multiple different colors, you can get a cool messy marbled effect.
i nailed some super cheap picture-hanging bars into the backs (again, $1 for 2 or 3 from the craft store!) and hung them in a row of three. design your leaf layout depending on how you want them to hang together, and you can use a single leaf multiple times to create a flower look. i guess in the end, they really cost me at least $2 since i had to buy the picture hangers and the blue paint since i didn't have any blue on hand (on sale for .47 cents though!)
it's been so funny to catch people trying to inconspicuously touch them to see if they are fabric. they coordinate perfectly with my leaf stem pillow! everyone will be impressed when you tell them you hand-stamped them with leaves from your back yard!
i didn't mean for them to line up so perfectly with the blue shutters (i thought those were taller!) but it's nice to get a little color in that corner, and they go well with my leaf pillow! yay!