Hendersonville, North Carolina ~ 828.785.2389

February 21, 2013

Nails + String = Art | Hendersonville, NC Photographer

I can be found perusing Pinterest on a somewhat regular basis these days.  I'm sure some of you can relate.  Last year I came across this cool string art post.   I loved the colors, the endless possibilities of what I could create, and the fact that the supplies needed were all very in-expensive! 
I gathered what I needed and created a couple of projects within a couple days of finding that post.  I'll share more about those projects later on.  Fast forward a couple of months, and my niece comes to visit for a few weeks over the summer.  After seeing the projects that I created, she decided to make one of her own.

I had most of the supplies on hand for her to make her string art.
Supplies needed:
1 board - size varies based on what you are making
embroidery floss in colors of your choice
finishing nails - quantities vary depending on project
paint or stain
I had some pink spray paint that Zhoie chose to use on her board.
(I think this was the first time she had ever spray painted anything!)
I have also used a $1 bottle of craft paint and stain on my boards. 
Anything will work.

She also makes friendship bracelets, so she had all this embroidery floss with her.
To create a template, we created a document in Photoshop the same dimensions as her board.  I believe her board was something like 10" x 24".  Then we picked a font that she liked and printed it out on regular printer paper.  Since the document was 24" long, it had to be printed on two pieces of paper and then taped together.  Then we simply cut out the letters and taped them down to the board with scotch tape.  Being careful to center it both vertically and horizontally.

Once we were satisfied with how it was lined up on the board, she took a hammer and some pliers and began nailing.  We found that it is best to put the nails just outside of the papers edge instead of nailing through the paper.  If you nail through the it, some of the paper can get stuck when you are trying to remove the paper template later.
The spacing between the nails can vary depending on the look you are going for.  Most of the ones that we have made have been about this close together.  I did make one with the nails further apart that is pictured below.  When the nails are closer together, the strings are more dense.  Space the nails further apart for a more sparse look.
She was very careful to try and space all the nails pretty evenly apart.
After all of the nails are placed, remove the paper template.
Cooper had to get in on some of the hammer and nail action too!
Then you just start wrapping the strings randomly around the nails.  Again, the density of the strings is a personal preference.  I've seen them wrapped very sparse and some wrapped super dense.  
And her finished project!  I think it turned out super cute!
She has since made several more for Christmas gifts for friends and family.
This is the first one that I made.  I made it to hang in our Buckeye room in our basement.
I bought this board at Michaels in the craft section and used acrylic craft paint to paint it with.

This is the same type of board that Zhoie used for hers.  The difference is that I took mine out side and beat it up first.  I threw it around on the ground on the pavement and took a hammer & screwdriver to it, trying to make it look aged.  The neighbors probably thought that I had lost my mind!  
For the stain on this wood, I used something else that I probably saw on Pinterest at some time or another.  I took an old pickle jar out of the recycling bin, poured some white vinegar in it, and then put some steel wool in it.  I let the steel wool soak in the vinegar for about 24 hours, and came up with this stain.  I brushed one coat of the stain on the wood and got this great weathered, aged look.
I also used different nails on this one.  I don't know what they are called.  But they are black and have a much larger head on them then the finishing nails did.  I felt like they added more to this aged, rustic look I was going for on this project.
And the spacing of these nails is also different.  They are spaced a little further apart and I didn't wrap nearly as much string on this one.  Again, it just depends on your personal preference.
And then finally, this is the Christmas gift that Zhoie gave to my husband. 
It's also obviously for our Buckeye room!
Doesn't she do such a great job?
I'm linking this project up to Young House Love, Bower PowerThe Remodeled Life, and Decor and the Dog for their fun Pinterest Challenge!  You can go check out lots of other Pinterest inspired projects on all of these blogs.


  1. Nice!! I think I am going to tackle one of these too! thanks for the "pinspiration"!

    1. You're welcome. Would love to see how yours turns out!

  2. Amazing! They all look so great.

  3. Wow! So easy, looks like it just required a lot of patience. I love it!

    1. It is one of those projects that is very simple to do, just time consuming.

  4. Those are beautiful! I love the variety of images you shared- thank you!

  5. Loving the different looks you've achieved with basically the same method!

    Oh, and those nails with the big flat head, they're known as roofing nails.

    1. Thanks for stopping by Syl and for the info on the roofing nails. I'll have to update the post.

  6. Yours looks amazing! I loved your use of colour. I also lovelovelove the Ohio one! So pretty.

    I also made string art for the Pinterest Challenge. Check mine out at http://thesepeachroses.blogspot.ca/2013/02/string-art.html

    1. Yours is awesome. I never thought about using yarn. Great idea! Thanks for sharing.

  7. I just made one of these for a friend's baby. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your state one, I may have to do that for NC which used to be where we called home for the last 5 years. (Maine is home once again.) Great job!

    1. I made the Ohio one because we had lived there all of our lives until the end of 2011 when we moved to NC. I have made some NC art too. Maybe I should blog about that too. Thanks for stopping by Whitney!

  8. Very beautiful! Definitely want to make an NC one but the coast looks so daunting to me with those nails! Still going to try though!

    1. You can do it Lauren! I have other NC art. But it's with fabric in an embroidery hoop. I should blog about it too.


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