modpodge cardboard letters

I’m excited to share a little tutorial on how to turn boring cardboard letters into lovely, personalized initials. I first started this project back in January at Lauren’s fabulous girl’s retreat. Three of the 4 ladies took their initials home at the end of the weekend….Maggie, I’m almost done with yours, promise! :)

First, gather your supplies:

cardboard letters {I found mine at Papersource, but I think JoAnn’s or Michaels carry them as well}
selection of heavy duty scrapbook paper
1 or 2 small bottles of craft paint {I chose a neutral gray}
Mod Podge
several paintbrushes
acrylic sealer spray

{a few of my favorite Amy Butler papers}

The next step is to choose several coordinating scrapbook papers. Most of my letters were completed with three different patterns of paper.

Once you have your paper picked out, trace one side, the middle, or the bottom (you choose!) of the cardboard letter on to your scrapbook paper with a pencil. This is your guide for how much and what shape to cut out of each paper pattern. In the photo below, I chose to use the green geometric print for half of the “M.”

{adding some color!}

Apply a thin coat of Mod Podge to the back of the paper cut out. Place the paper directly onto the cardboard letter, taking care to make sure everything lines up. (If your paper runs over the edge of the letter, just trim it off later.) Press down to secure the paper to the letter. Repeat the tracing and gluing process until the entire front of the letter is covered. Let dry.

{two letters in progress…}

Once the papers are attached to the front of the letter, grab your paint brush and paint Mod Podge all over the front of the letter. Repeat process three times, letting Mod Podge dry in between coats.

After the final Mode Podge coat is dry, paint the remaining sides, bottom, top, and back of the letter with your craft paint of choosing. My letters needed several coats of paint to look their best. Let everything dry for several hours.

{gettin’ my crafy face on}

Then, go outside and spray your letter with acrylic sealer. This will give it a glossy luster and a durable, protective finish.

Finally, find a lovely place to display your new letter! Maybe on a bookshelf, side table, or in your craft room.

{three finished letters!}

{close up}

See, easy peasy! This is also a perfect DIY gift idea!

repurposed bulletin board

Several months ago I decided my necklace and earring collection needed some serious organizational help. I grabbed an extra bulletin board I still had from my college dorm room days, a few sheets of neutral scrapbook paper, a box of brightly colored push pins and my tangled up clump of necklaces and earrings.

I secured the scrapbook paper to cork board with push pins and then evenly spaced additional push pins throughout the board to accommodate individual necklaces, bracelets, and hoop earrings. Then I found a roll of twine in the junk drawer and cut off enough to make a “clothes line” of sorts for dangly earrings at the top of the board. The final step was simply to arrange the jewelry and prop it up against the wall behind my dresser.

Now I can finally see what jewelry options I have to choose from each day!

{a favorite craft fair find: pink fabric earrings}

{lime green birdie}

{another craft fair find}

shrimp spring rolls

Fresh spring rolls are definitely my favorite part of going out to dinner at the many wonderful Minneapolis Thai restaurants. Several months ago I came across a simple and healthy spring roll recipe from the Mayo Clinic. We’ve made these fresh rolls twice (once at warp speed, so it’s definitely not a time-consuming endeavor!)

Here’s the recipe, slightly altered to our tastes, and a few pictures of the spring roll process.

8 large boiled shrimp, peeled and deveined, cut lengthwise
1 ounce cellophane noodles
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/4 cup peeled, seeded and julienne cucumber
1/2 cup thinly sliced Napa cabbage
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
4 rice-paper rounds, 8 inches in diameter

Bring a pot of water to boil and soak noodles for 10 minutes. Drain and place noodles in a large bowl.

Add the carrot, cucumber, cabbage, shrimp, and cilantro. Toss gently to mix.

Place a double thickness of paper towels on a work surface. Fill a large, shallow baking dish with water. Place 1 rice-paper round in the water and soak until pliable, about 30 seconds. Carefully transfer the wrapper to the paper towels and turn once to blot dry. Arrange 1/2 cup of the noodle mixture on the bottom half of the wrapper.

Fold the bottom edge toward the center and roll up the wrapper halfway, making sure to wrap tightly around the filling. Fold the right and left edges of the wrapper over the filling and finish rolling up. Repeat with the remaining wrappers and filling. Transfer the rolls to a plate and cover with dampened paper towels until ready to eat.

Serve with your favorite peanut dipping sauce.

{assemble and chop ingredients}

{mix together in large bowl and scoop onto spring roll wrappers}

{gently begin rolling the wrapper…Chipotle burrito style!}

{keep wrapping}

{press down edge to close}

{eat and enjoy!}

About A Midwestern Belle


Southern girl loving life in the Midwest. Meeting and event planner, handmade creator and crafter, lover of interior design and fresh blooms. Wife to a cute male nurse, puppy mama and constantly inspired.

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