Remember last week when Naomi shared her super cool cabinet makeover using adhesive vinyl? If anything, you probably remember how her really caring and devoted friend came over to help her with the project (and to photobomb her progress shots):
After all the hard work of cleaning and painting the cabinet, though, I didn’t get to stick around for the fun part of adding the vinyl decals because as you may (or may not) know, we don’t actually live together. It’s true!
Rather than sulk about how Naomi gets to have all the fun trying new DIY techniques, I decided to do my own project using adhesive vinyl. So there.
Like Naomi, I was drawn to the idea of using vinyl when I came up with a concept for some geometric patterns, but the idea of painting them using painter’s tape did not appeal to me in the least. The project in question: some artwork to fill the space behind Sam’s computer monitor in his study:
I built the shelves knowing that I would want to put something there to fill that space, but I wasn’t sure what would be right given that the whole room is fairly neutral and minimal. I also wanted something really inexpensive, and knew that I wanted it to be a specific size to perfectly fit the dimensions of the space.
After a lot of thinking and looking at inspiration images, I came up with the thought of decorating a piece of wood with a white geometric design — something fairly simple, but that would tie into the rug hanging on the other side of the room:
I was particularly struck by this amazing backdrop:
I want one in every room of the house….
However, I knew that I did NOT want to paint a detailed geometric pattern, and thought that adhesive vinyl could be perfect. I ordered a roll of adhesive vinyl in matte white from Amazon (affiliate link – read our policies), and impatiently waited the 48 hours for it to arrive.
Step 1 was preparing the wood. I happened to have a thin sheet of MDF on hand that was about the right size and had nice graining. I actually think it was scrap wood from when Naomi used my jig saw to cut some wood for the beam project in her garage, and she left the scraps with me.
I determined the correct dimensions to fit in the space above the desk, and then cut it down to size on my table saw.
Next I needed to add support pieces — the wood needed to sit above the metal rails that run down the wall, and so I knew I needed side pieces to elevate the front beyond these. The rails are a little less than 1″ thick, so I knew that thin 1″ thick pieces would work perfectly. I grabbed some scrap wood from my pile and cut the support pieces to the correct dimensions:
To adhere the supports to the front, I laid out the supports and put a thin line of wood glue down each piece:
Then I just lined up the front piece so that it was flush with the support pieces along both ends, with the third support piece in the middle. I used a clamp on each end plus weighed down the front piece with some heavy objects to get a good bond everywhere.
I let this dry overnight, and then it was time to make my pattern! Like Naomi, I used a cutting mat and x-acto knife to cut my shapes to size. (I failed to take pictures of that, but you can reference Naomi’s post.) I built the pattern organically, referencing my inspiration image and playing around with what felt right for the dimensions of my “canvas.”
Sometimes I would lay pieces down only to decide later that I didn’t like them, and it was easy to just peel them up and decide on something new. After a few hours of experimentation, I had a final pattern I felt good about:
To attach it to the wall, I knew I would need to drill into the face of the wood. However, I wanted to countersink my screws so that they would be flush (and in the cases where there was vinyl in the corner, so that I could lay the vinyl on top of the screws and hide them).
Countersinking was pretty easy. First I set up my drilling station, using an old issue of Martha Stewart Living to protect the floor:
Next I used a drill bit that was the same diameter as the head of the screws I would use to drill a shallow hole in each corner.
Finally I used a smaller drill bit to drill down the center of these shallow holes to make a pilot hole for the shaft of the screws, and then it was time to mount the piece on the wall!
The countersinking worked perfectly. Here’s a screw that remained exposed, but perfectly flush with the wood:
And here’s one that I screwed in and then re-covered with the vinyl piece that originally went in the corner:
Then I stepped back and admired my handiwork:
Not bad for a $9.99! Now I’m trying to figure out what other fun projects I can do with this newfound tool in my DIY arsenal!