Monday, October 18, 2010

DIY: Kate Spade Ampersand

The ampersand artwork in all of Kate Spade's retail stores has always been an all time favorite. I've searched through all of my art vendors and googled finding it about a million and one times and could never find where to purchase one.

Last week the simplest way to find out lead to an immediate answer. I just asked them on twitter! Right away the sweet folks at Kate Spade told me that it couldn't be purchased anywhere, because they made it themselves.

I knew I loved KS, but now I heart them even more love their DIY attitude. See, chic artwork does not need to be expensive.

I decided to try it out for myself this past weekend.

I'm sure if you are graphic designer there are way easier ways to do this, but alas I am not so this is what I did. I did a screen capture and borrowed a KS ampersand from one of their lovely gallery walls. I then just put it in a powerpoint slide and enlarged it as much as a could. Doing that made it fill my entire 8 x 11 page and therefore made it a perfect size for my 9 x 12 canvas. One I picked out a copy I used a sharpie to darken the ampersand.

Now you can go about getting the ampersand on your canvas a couple of different ways.
- Use freezer paper to cut out a stencil of the ampersand.
- Trace the stencil on to the canvas and then just carefully hand paint the ampersand in.
- Use contact paper to cut out an ampersand, place on canvas and paint around it.

Option number 3 worked best for me!

Here are my supplies:

I was actually able to pick up a double packs on canvas boards for $8 at Michaels, along with a tube of paint for $4, paintbrushes I owned, sharpie I owned, contact paper was picked up at dollar store for $1. :)

Now after you darken your ampersand with a sharpie you can now get to work on tracing out your &. I taped down my contact paper right side facing up and placed my ampersand on top and used a razor blade to cut out my &.

* The reason why I darkened the ampersand was because when I enlarged it the image got fuzzy on the edges and I wanted a clean line.

As you go about cutting out the ampersand the freed pieces will start curling up and make it difficult to continue tracing. We had to keep taping it down every couple of cuts:

Once you are done you can free your ampersand. Due to the nature of the contact paper it's going to start curling up:

Applying it on the canvas is the hardest part of this project. It's much easy if you have someone help you remove the contact paper backing and apply to canvas.

Now in order to prevent paint bleeding through to the ampersand you should go around the entire thing with a thin paint line to seal the contact paper.

Wait for the paint border to dry and then start painting away:

Let that dry and then go over it with a foam roller to smooth out brush strokes:

Let that dry and then remove contact paper:

Pretty good! We only had a couple of little bits of bleed thru.

I then used a wite out pen to fix the edges:

Then I went around with white paint and painted the ampersand. Just be careful if you are a lefty like me. I smeared some white paint while I was doing it.

Let dry and then you are all finished!

Copy of my ampersand template available here. *Please use for personal use only.

There is also a blog dedicated just to ampersands there may be a shape there that you prefer to the KS version.

Images of Kate Spade store via Delight by Design.

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Blogger The Consummate Hostess said...

I adore it and will have to give this fun project a try soon! Hope that you have a wonderful Monday!

October 18, 2010 at 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Kate Collins Interiors said...

This is awesome! Thanks for sharing yet a great DIY with easy to follow instructions.

October 18, 2010 at 11:11 AM  
Blogger Dumbwit Tellher said...

Who knew an 'ampersand' could look so fabulous. Great DIY & such thorough steps. Thank you. Great week to you ~

October 18, 2010 at 11:21 AM  
Blogger Becolorful said...

What is it about the ampersand that is so cool? But it is cool. What a fun post and great tutorial. I'd love it if you would link it up at Becolorful's Motivated Monday link party today.

October 18, 2010 at 11:42 AM  
Blogger caitlin wilson said...

So glad you did this! i made mine too! I am going to link a post to you on this today! xo

October 18, 2010 at 1:01 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

That looks awesome! And, is funny because I was completely inspired by that photo as well and took sometime this weekend to make an ampersand also! Mine is out of fabric. I'll have to post soon :)

October 18, 2010 at 1:29 PM  
Blogger Courtney {a thoughtful place} said...

That looks great. Well done. I used the contact paper on pillows i did and it can be tricky for sure. LOVE the pink! Happy Monday

October 18, 2010 at 1:53 PM  
Blogger Deliciously Organized said...

Such a lovely project! I adore how it turned out! brings a nice pop to a room!

October 18, 2010 at 2:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very creative! Kate Spade has one of the best interior design concepts in retail right now. I love the idea of the ampersand - could be fun to manifest this into some kind of monogram. Thanks for sharing.


October 18, 2010 at 2:38 PM  
Blogger Desert Domicile said...

What a great DIY project! Thanks for sharing :)

October 18, 2010 at 2:51 PM  
Blogger Capella Kincheloe Interior Design said...

Love the graphic and decorative nature of the ampersand. Amanda Nesbit Design (AND) also uses one on her logo.

October 18, 2010 at 3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG...the White Out pen is brilliant! Thank you for the tip!

October 18, 2010 at 3:48 PM  
Blogger Miss Rubio said...

WOW!!! It came out great!! So much work it seems, but your patience and determinaion paid off :-)

October 18, 2010 at 3:58 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Love this DIY and that it's PINK! BTW, everyday I am waiting for your new blog design and nothing... When oh when will the new look be revealed?????

October 18, 2010 at 6:06 PM  
Blogger Carmel @ our fifth house said...

Love that! Nice job!

October 18, 2010 at 6:21 PM  
Blogger Crissie @ bug and Bear said...

Brilliant!! You're amazing :)

October 18, 2010 at 10:33 PM  
Blogger Jackie said...

Awesome job on the DIY! I was thinking of trying it myself!

October 19, 2010 at 12:57 PM  
Blogger Royaltygirl said...

I was looking for one of these this weekend and am going to make one this week! Thanks for the tips! I am doing a kate spade inspired powder room and want to copy the style of the kate spade decor.

October 19, 2010 at 4:35 PM  
Blogger Sara Mueller said...

Hi Camila,

I love your template. I was ecstatic when I saw your post. I had been obessing over the ampersand myself. I made it last night, but I used mod podge instead since I am not great with stencils and paint. Do you mind if I share your template and share my mod podge method on my blog? I will of course link back to you.

Great job on doing the template.
Thank you!

October 19, 2010 at 5:12 PM  
Blogger LindsB said...

so cute- what a great diy project, I need to make one now :)

October 20, 2010 at 12:24 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

I was going to suggest artist transfer paper - I think you can buy it in rolls. If you do a lot of fun canvas prints like this, it's a good tool to have. Basically it works like a sheet of carbon paper, but it's graphite so you can erase. It will save you from having to cut stencils! I do love the shape of the ampersand. Super pretty.

October 20, 2010 at 1:49 PM  

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