I came across this unique idea on a great blog called Make It A Wonderful Life. It was simply too cool not to try out, and the great directions ensured everything worked out well. The end result reminds me of the old tin ceiling tiles which were popular in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, during the Victorian era. While there aren’t so many vintage ones left, there are plenty of modern versions you can view on the internet.
- Aleen’s Tacky Glue
- glue stick
- aluminium foil
- cotton swab
- black shoe polish
- old rag or paper towels
1. Select a piece of cardboard to use as your base. I used foam core and mat board because I happened to have scrap pieces lying around, but any cardboard will do. Avoid using corrugated cardboard, as mentioned on the blog where I found this project, because the lines may show through. Although for some designs, this may add an interesting texture. To be explored…
2. Any subject will work for this project eg. animals, faces, words, abstract designs, etc. Have children make a few sketches to explore their ideas, making sure they keep it simple. Details will be added later on. Using a pencil, make the drawing on the cardboard.
3. Glue can now be added on top of the pencil lines. The purpose of the glue is to create raised sections which will show through the foil when added on top. Aleene’s Tacky Glue was recommended because it doesn’t spread out as much a regular white glue. Again, keep any details to a minimum or it will be difficult to work the foil around them. Allow to dry completely.
4. Once the tacky glue has dried, cut a piece of foil a few inches larger than the cardboard, so you have enough to fold towards the back. Take the glue stick and apply it either to the side of the foil you will be covering the drawing with, or directly on top of the drawing. Press the foil on top and fold all four sides to the back. Using your finger, gently press the foil down so it adheres to the cardboard. It’s very important to do this gently so you don’t break through the foil…like I did!
5. Now use a cotton swab to gently press the foil around the glue lines so the shapes become more visible.
6. Once finished, use a dull pencil (too sharp and it will break through the foil) to add any extra details by pressing gently onto the cardboard. A variety of shapes such as lines, swirls and circles will add wonderful texture to the piece.
7. Finally, cover the entire surface with black shoe polish, and wipe off any excess using an old rag or paper towels. It will settle in the grooves and highlight any details you have added. It will also darken the colour of the foil. I added a link in the materials section to show the type I used because it worked very well. The sponge applicator made it easy to apply.
We were truly impressed with the results and look forward to making more. Thank you to makeitawonderfullife for sharing such a great idea.