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Sunday, December 5, 2010

More *almost* Free Gifts

I like to think that God has a sense of humor.  

Case in point- I have often been referred to as 'The Queen'......don't ask me why  ;-)   Seriously- even as a little girl my parents said I must think I was the Queen.  Hmmmm.  So, it would only be *fitting* that I should get a crown for Christmas, right??  Unfortunately, the crown I am getting is NOT the kind to put on my head!!  That's the irony at play here.....last night I cracked a porcelain crown on a molar.  Yippee  :/

So guess what.  More people on my gift list will be getting something handmade this year.  Not necessarily a bad thing. 

I visited a few craft shows in the last few weeks, and there are lots of ways to spend your hard earned money to buy 'personalized' gifts for the folks you love.  I have admired the collage name prints that have the lettering made from architectural pics that resemble or are letters.  Given my architectural background, that is a given, right??  

You can imagine my excitement when I found a Flickr group with these images to share FOR FREE!!  Ahhh, sometimes the stars align.  The name collage prints I saw for sale (unframed) at the craft shows were running just about $10 per letter, and that was in black and white.  I'm sure with the cost of colored ink, they figured why bother increasing their costs, right? 

Certainly, if you want, you can make these personalized word/name prints in black and white.  I like to add color through artwork, so I chose to print my collage on my color laser printer.  Just to save you some time, effort and ink, I will tell ya I tried this with canvas paper and got a pretty mottled result.  I got a vivid print with white cardstock, lightly textured.

Here is my collage print:

Here is my finished project:

The editing and collage program I use is Picnik The basics are free, but the collage part I used is in the premium features which are under $30/yr.  You may already have an editing program you love.....I was just putting that out there for anyone that doesn't already have one.  

Leo Reynolds  is kind enough to share his fabulous collection of architectural photos with everyone FOR FREE (you can tell I love FREE, right??) as long as you follow his copyright rules, which means no resale, but give as many of these awesome gifts as you choose!  

 Just a footnote:
I had my mat custom cut @ my local hobby store for a cost of $5.  The frame was one of many I have purchased over the course of the year at garage sales, etc.  You may have one laying around that could just use a fresh coat of paint.  But, still this project was far below the $150+ it would have cost to have the people at the craft show do it- and the most time consuming part was looking through all of Leo's great photos and selecting my favorites.
A BIG *thanks* to Leo for all of the fantastic Flickr images!


  1. That's great! I've been collecting my own letters for an adventure like this, but I was glad to read there is a place to go grab some for free to fill out my alphabet! I love your finished product!

  2. Great inspiration! Thank you for sharing! Cute blog, by the way!
    Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!

  3. What a beautiful gift. And so much more meaningful when you make it yourself.

  4. Hi

    What a fabulous project and an awesome gift!!

    Thank you for linking up to Make It Monday this week.

    Michelle :-)

  5. Hello , have just come from Make it Monday [ Michelle's] . What an inspirational Blog , filled with techniques I have not seen before such as this one . The finished creation is stunning .

  6. I am really into Ms at my office so I am going to have to try this.

    I have the paid version of picnik and I love it!

  7. Stopping by from today’s blog hop and am your newest a follower! I also liked your FB page and hope you will hop on by to one of my blogs and FB page too!!/pages/Tawnas-thoughts-plans-and-journeys/110934798966532




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