Monday, March 10, 2008

The Jewelry Thing-gummy

I post this quasi-useful tutorial in response to a request on Flickr. I apologize in advance for the lack of step-by-step pictures- I barely remembered to take a picture of the final product!

As mentioned, my sister has been displaying her jewelry on a corkboard for some years, but the corkboard finally decided to give up the battle and its wooden frame started to separate from the board. We had been thinking of ways to improve upon the basic design of stock brown corkboard with bit of white material stapled on top, and so traveled to our friendly Ikea for ideas. My sister knew she wanted something bigger than her existing board, and I suggested it might be nice to rig a mirror in the center to make it easy to try different pieces when getting dressed.

We bought two silver Ribba frames: 27.5x39.5 for $39.99 and 9x9 for $7.99. I already had some Sorli mirrors in the house (almost 8x8 and only $4.99 for four). We picked up white self-adhesive foamboard at Michaels (under $10 for two pieces) and bought 1.5 yards of remnant fabric at G Street Fabrics for $4.50.

I took the old board apart because I was planning to reuse the cork. Turns out the board is actually a thin layer of cork glued onto what looks like the cardboard equivalent of MDF- ugly and surprisingly heavy. I had purchased the foamboard with adhesive thinking I would stick it on the back of the existing board to make a thicker bed for the pushpins. I decided to ditch the old board entirely and just to use the white foamboard. I then thought I would use the adhesive side to stick on the fabric, but decided against it because of the fear of making any wrinkles permanent. Finally I thought I would use the adhesive side to stick the white board to the back of the Ribba frame, but that didn't happen because I want to be able to disassemble this piece if necessary. Bottom line: save money and buy the regular foamboard without the adhesive layer!

I assembled the mirrored piece first. I took apart the square Ribba frame and ditched the passepartout. I covered the back of the frame with the fabric and popped it back in place behind the glass. I then used the adhesive squares that come with the mirrors to stick one onto the glass on the front of the frame. I used the glass because I was afraid that the stickies wouldn't hold on fabric, and because I knew cleaning a round mirror on white fabric was a recipe for disaster if the fabric wasn't protected. I used ball chain instead of picture wire because I found it more attractive.

Once the mirrored center was done, I turned my attention to the actual jewelry board. I used the hard back of the large Ribba frame as a template to cut the foamboard down to size. I laid the fabric out and wrapped it around the board, attaching it to the back of the foamboard using duct tape and stretching to pull taut as I went around the perimeter. I attached a screw-eye to the underside of the top of the frame (the Ribbas are deeply recessed in the back) and ran the ball chain through the eye, leaving it hanging out in front of the frame. (I'll try to post a picture of this tonight as I realize it sounds confusing) I carefully worked the fabric covered foamboard into place, making sure the chain was still hanging out on the front of the piece, then installed the back of the frame. The last step was to run the ball chain through the hangers on the back of the mirrored frame so it could hang. I stuck a white pushpin at the top of the chain to make it look like the mirror was just one more piece of jewelry hanging on the board (but that is less obvious absent other pushpins!

new jewelry display board

I am not certain if the foamboard will work out long term; if not, I'm going to replace it with thick cork tiles. I'll take another picture once my sister has it mounted on the wall with jewelry in place.


Alana in Canada said...

Thanks for the instructions. This is really pretty. Perhaps you ought to post it to Ikea Hacker, too.

Christine said...

Looks great! You could try homasote, too--I know about this b/c I've been researching how to absorb sound because of my LOUD neighbor (whose TV I'm listening to right now).