Now I’ve always loved collecting assorted vintage and contemporary plates in the hope that one day I’d be able to have a wall gallery of these. However, collecting the right pieces can be a much lengthier process, so I decided perhaps I should add my own skills to the collection by combining my love for typology and illustration. And as you know, we’ve been doing a bit of ‘home improvement’ over the last few months this year; redecorating, remodelling and de-cluttering out flat in phases where I’ve taken this opportunity to add new bits and pieces of decorative items – whether they are my creations of that of others.
Anyway, I designed two plates for our kitchen wall bearing some of my favourite quotes/phrases; “eat more cake” and “if you want breakfast in bed, sleep in the kitchen.” which I felt went nicely with Telegramme’s ‘coffee’ print that we had bought at the Renegade Craft Fair. So, what do you need I hear you ask? Well, three main materials and a REALLY steady hand!! unless of course you end up doodling ;)
- Plain white plate of desired size
- Permanent marker pens + a graphite pencil
- some paper with your illustrations
- spring-loaded plate hangers, peel-and-stick disc hangers, brackets or stands
- cello/washi tape
- If like me, you opt for some text for your plates then I would probably recommend setting out a rough template of how the words sit together – obviously, one that would suit the dimensions of your plate. I did mine on inDesign to be even more meticulous but you can totally freehand draw if you’re a lot more confident in doing that! The template you create will in essence act like a transfer paper.
- Once you have your template printed, on the reverse side of the sheet, trace over the letterings or artwork in graphite pencil. Depending on the weight/thickness of the paper this should be visible enough to trace otherwise, put it on a light box (it can be a make shift one) or against a window.
- After tracing all the lettering / artwork, turn the sheet over, the right side up. Give the plate a good wipe over again before you place the paper in the centre of the plate until you are happy with its positioning. You may cut around the text/artwork, getting rid of the excess paper, so that you’re able to see the placement better. Once you’re happy with the placement, tack it down using cello tape or similar.
- Now, go over the text again – you can be a bit crude doing this part as long as you make sure all areas of the lettering is covered. What this does is transfer the graphite from the reverse side onto the plate – it’s an old school technique to give you some faint guidelines that you can use when you freehand draw over it. When you’ve covered all the areas of your lettering/artwork, slowly remove the sheet to reveal a faint graphite outline of your work. All you have to do now is go over that with a permanent marker pen…..and a steady hand!!
- Be careful when you’re tracing over fine lines and filling in the lettering as any mistake you make will not be easy to remove. But how satisfying is it when you see the finished piece!! :)
- When you’re happy with your work you will need to place the plate into the oven (do NOT preheat!) and leave it to ‘set’ for 30 mins at 175 degrees (350 degrees in fahrenheit / gas mark 4)
- And finally, to finish it all off, use a regular spring-loaded plate hanger (I bought mine from a lovely Ebay seller (click here) or disc hangers to give make your plate sit even more flush to the wall. Et, VOILA! :D
So what do you think folks? Fancy giving this a try yourself? Well you can choose something a lot simpler and even freehand draw or doodle whatever it is you want, if you don’t think you confident enough with meticulous lettering. Whatever it is, I do think they make fabulous pieces of work for your home or even as gifts! Which by the way, if you want any commissioned work done I’d be totally happy to do these for you! All you need to tell me is what kind of quotes your want on there. Anyway….have a go at these and let me know how you get on and please feel free to share them with me either on my IG, Twitter or Facebook! You know I get a kick out of that! :) Just remember to tag them with #CraftwithMolu so I can find them easily!!
Happy crafting and making lovelies!!