March 2, 2013

Year End Gift

March is here.  The arrival of this month not only means Spring is just around the corner, but it also means that I only have a couple months left of preschool before the end of the year.

Each year, I challenge myself to come up with the perfect end of the year gift for my class.  Two years ago, each one of my little friends left with a book all about their year in preschool complete with pictures of them having loads of fun.  Last year, my budget was smaller so I had to come up with something that would have meaning for each child but wouldn't break my bank.  I decided to use Pinterest and search through the hundreds of pins I have to come up with an idea and I found something that worked well and cost me roughly about $1.50 per student {score}.

Cute as a button, right??  And it was so simple to make as well.  The list of supplies needed are below:

Unfinished wood board to use as the frame
Ribbon -- thin green organza and a wider white organza
White thumb tacks
Light green acrylic paint
Gray vinyl
Mod Podge {matte}
Clear acrylic spray paint
Picture of your choice in 4x6

Step 1:
Print your picture on matte photo paper {gloss paper will not work for this}.  I found that using a laser printer works better than an inkjet; it's less likely to have the colors run or ruin the picture altogether.

Step 2:
Paint the wood with acrylic paint; let dry for at least an hour

Step 3:
Using Mod Podge, cover the entire back of the photo and place it on the wood frame.  I initially smoothed it out using my fingers but then used my crafting roller to smooth out any additional bubbles.  Let this set for about 30 minutes to an hour.

Step 4:
Once it's dry, cover the front of the picture with Mod Podge.  I covered not only the picture but the frame as well.  I used my crafting roller to smooth out any bumps and bubbles then let it dry.

Step 5:
Once the picture was dry, I spray painted it with a clear acrylic spray paint to give it a nice shine then added the white thumb tacks on the corners.

Step 6:
Time to add a little more flare.  I created the little top-knot bow using both the green and white organza ribbons and attached them to the top with hot glue.

Step 7:
Using my Silhouette, I took my gray vinyl and cut out the year and placed it on the bottom

Viola!!  A finished product that is sweet and was hopefully a beautiful keepsake for each of my families.  Now the pressure is on to figure out what I'll do for them this year.  Stay tuned...this should be good!

Where we like to party!

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