Sometimes an idea just hits you. BLAM! Right out of the blue, genius-like creativity strikes. In fact, most of my really good ideas are things that I didn’t think about at all, but just popped right into my head uninvited.
Last night’s idea to not make dinner, but instead curl up on the couch with a reheated antojito and my laptop comes to mind as my most recent genius idea.
So a few weeks ago, when an idea popped into my head about wall art I was thrilled. Once the idea miraculously appears the only thing left is to execute it. Which is usually the easy part.
I’m a knitter and I have half balls of yarn left over from old projects. No one ever knows what to do with leftover yarn but for some reason if you’re a knitter you just can’t throw it away. You collect bags and bins and baskets of it. Until you see those gross, dried up, brown larvae cases on it. Then you can usually bring yourself to throw away the yarn. And you’re usually thankful you have a reason to.
The idea that hit me a few weeks ago was to turn the yarn into a wall hanging. Not the typical woven yarn wall hanging, but something that would be quicker to do and more temporary. Something you could just tack up on the wall in an hour or less and pull it down when you get sick of it. Something anyone could do freeform without any rules or ability to knit.
Through a bit of trial and error I figured out how to stick the yarn to the wall without nails and we were off to the races!
What you need to make a super-contemporary yet charmingly retro yarn wall hanging:
Push pins (either magnetic or the regular kind for corkboards)
Double Sided Foam Tape
Paint the same colour as your wall.
Gather your push pins.
If you use the kind that have the nails for pushing into a corkboard, cut the nails off with wire cutters.
Paint your push pins the colour of your walls.
I just used my regular wall paint.
Then cut squares of the foam tape.
Peel one side of the backing off and stick your painted push pin on it.
Cut the foam tape so it’s just a small circle around the push pin.
Here I’ve just stuck the push pin to the tape w/out cutting the foam tape into a square first.
It makes it harder to cut the circle.
Make sure to cut the foam into a square first.
You’ll have about 30 push pins, so you might want to sit down to cut all the foam pieces into circles.
It’ll take a while.
And your scissors will get gummed up.
Now you’re ready to start creating your wall hanging.
So pick a spot.
I picked the area to the left of my curtains over the couch.
All you have to do is peel the back off the foam tape and stick it to your wall.
This way your push pins, (which you’re going to wrap your yarn around) just stick to the wall.
No need for nails.
When you’re sick of it, just peel the foam tape off!
My first idea was to use magnetic push pins, with magnetic tape.
As it turns out, magnetic tape is NOT so magnetic.
Anyhow … start sticking your pins to the wall. Place them equal distances apart in whatever shape you want.
The idea is to place the pins so you can easily wind yarn around them creating an abstract pattern.
You’ll end up with a pattern like this.
Removable push pins on the wall you can wrap and drape yarn from.
If you own a cat, wrapping the yarn on the wall will be a struggle.
A long, drawn out struggle.
You know what else will be a long drawn out struggle?
Making bits of yarn on the wall look good.
It will be a struggle the likes of which you’ve never experienced.
And finally, you will give up.
Because no matter how you drape it …
no matter how you swag it …
no matter how you spin it …
this thing looks like crap.
Shockingly, it actually looks a LOT better in the picture than it did in real life.
I added all kinds of yarn. Ten times as much as you see in the picture above. But no matter what I did it just looked like yarn stuck on the wall. Amazingly it really did look a lot better in the pictures. For some reason I deleted all the pictures of the more completed project. I actually looked at them and thought Huh! Looks pretty good in a photo.
And that’s the trouble with a lot of webites and magazines. They *know* things look a lot better in photos. That’s why when you try things they suggest they don’t look nearly as good in your house.
I did NOT want you to spend any time doing this only to find out it looks like a kindergarden project in real life.
That’s the thing about DIY and inspiration and creativity. Sometimes what you create is just disgusting. People don’t normally show you the disgusting things they’ve created. They only show you the beautiful stuff. Pretend they’re perfect.
What the hell’s the point of that? Most great ideas are created out of ideas that didn’t work at all. You think those big flying things in the sky worked on the first try? No. I’m sure it took several tries for UFOs to make it into Earth’s atmosphere.
The point of all of this is, you just have to give it a shot sometimes. A lot of times things don’t work out. A lot of times they do. And sometimes despite the best of intentions your stroke of genius just ends up looking … well … a stroke.