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brown paper packages: {wood photo displays}

Monday, November 1, 2010

{wood photo displays}

I don't know about you, but as soon as November 1st hits, it's full steam ahead for Christmas gifts and projects. So, I pulled out my trusty 2x4s and 4x4 posts, and went to work!

2x4 Photo Block

2x4's are great because they'll give you more surface space if you need it. I was able to use pictures that wouldn't have worked on the photo cube, and still have space for the paper and text. These are perfect for personalizing, which makes them such great gifts. Whether it's dates, places, names, monograms, quotes, or handwritten notes from kids, you can make it extra special for the person you're giving it to. The fact that they are SO easy and inexpensive is the icing on the cake!

I didn't paint these, and I still haven't mod podged the pictures on, but I will, as soon as I've pinned down exactly what I want to do. I'm in the trial phase right now, and I usually try a few things before I decide for sure. I also tried them with and without ribbon, and shock, I actually liked these better without it. A different layout might look better with it, so you'll just want to try it both ways.

*You'll follow the same directions as listed for the photo cubes below.


Photo Cubes

When I saw the photo cubes by Poppyseed Projects, I knew how perfect they would be for gifts, and for my own home. I decided I wanted to add an element, and printed off text that correlated with the pictures I chose. This adds so much to the project, because you can really personalize each cube for the person or holiday it's for.

When I went digging through my photos, I realized how long it's been since I've actually developed any pictures, other than the large ones that I've hung on the wall. I had a great time, as I re-discovered some of my favorite pictures. How fun would it be to decorate for Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, or other holidays with photo cubes of holidays past? I also love that they're stackable, and don't take up a lot of space.


1. Dad's office--make a new one each year

2. Baby--"b" is for baby, little hands or feet; or a "firsts" cube, showcasing through text and pictures their firsts--words, milestones, etc.

3. one for each child, with monogram instead of words, or "k" is for kate, etc.

4. holiday blocks--one for each year, set them out from year to year as decorations

5. grandparents, of course! What about including some favorite memories from your kids about them?

6. favorite vacation, including text of places and dates

  • 4x4 post, cut into squares
  • scrapbook paper
  • cardstock
  • mod podge
  • craft paint
  • foam brushes
  • distress ink

1. Paint your post desired color, and let dry completely. Sand it slightly, just to get the rougher edges off. Don't sand too much off or you won't be able to see the paint once your photos are on. Decide ahead of time the layout for your block--it's harder to think about it in the middle of using mod podge.

2. Cut photos just slightly smaller than block.

3. Print desired text on cardstock, then cut just slightly smaller than the block. Distress all edges.

4. Apply mod podge with the foam brush directly onto the wood first, then one by one, lay your photos and cardstock on to the sides of the wood. Add another thin layer to the top of your photos. You don't want too much, or it will cause bubbling. Let dry completely.



Blogger Kim's Treasures said...

Very sweet! I love making these!

November 2, 2010 at 11:52 AM  
Blogger Mel said...

The blocks are cute, and those babies are adorable...sigh, I miss babies :)

November 2, 2010 at 12:27 PM  
Blogger Dana said...

Will the photos discolor under the mod podge over time?

November 2, 2010 at 1:15 PM  
Blogger Kelly Tillotson said...

i love these! im actually teaching one of my wards super saturday projects--countdown calendar with the 4x4 posts. I was meaning to ask you this question--the only 4x4 posts we have at our local lowes is that dark greenish brown/chemically treated kind. know what i mean? for the sample I made I painted the blocks, cut out the scrap paper, modpodged it on, then rubbed vinyl numbers on the blocks. i topped with another coat of modpodge and they looked great....except now, a month later--there is some bubbling/strangeness. this has never happened to me before, but ive never painted and done a project over the chemically treated wood. Do you think thats the problem? one of my friends suggested spraying the block with a sealant before applying any paint etc.
what do you think? thought id ask your opinion since i know you work with a lot of wood pieces like this and make such cute stuff.
any advice would be wonderful! our SS is this saturday, so hopefully you'll read this comment over the next couple days...
thanks again!

November 2, 2010 at 1:35 PM  
Blogger Danielle said...

Yep, I've decided you are the Wood Queen! I LOVE it!!

November 2, 2010 at 3:09 PM  
Blogger The Rusty Ranch said...

I did something similar to the picture cubes years ago when my oldest was small. We call them the "Special People Cubes". I took small wooden cubes I got at the local craft shop and modpodged pictures of each member of my side of the family on one, my husband's side of the family on another, one for cousins, etc. I even added pets. That way my son could learn who belonged to what family. We would even play games rolling them and guessing who would land on top. They are wonderful keepsakes now since after 12 years we lost a few pets and my uncle and grandmother but they live on on the "special people cube".

November 2, 2010 at 3:58 PM  
Blogger Lei said...

wow, those are just darling kierste!

November 2, 2010 at 5:11 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

I love the blocks!

November 2, 2010 at 6:14 PM  
Blogger brown paper packages said...


That's all our Home Depot sells as well, so it's mostly what I've worked with. The bubbling I get is inconsistent, but always with the same wood, so for me, I think it's been more of an issue with the mod podge, rather than the wood. However, the wood still could be the problem, and certainly a sealant (I would stick with clear) couldn't hurt anything. It might be worth a try, to compare notes and see if there were any differences.

Good luck with your Super Saturday!

November 2, 2010 at 9:34 PM  
Blogger MaryBerry Boutique said...

im making these. i love that they are so simple but cute! you always inspire me. you are truly gifted

November 3, 2010 at 12:04 AM  
Blogger Great Stuff! by Sandi said...

Love these! Thanks for the gift ideas!!

November 3, 2010 at 11:14 PM  
Blogger Mary said...

Super cute. Off the the Home Depot tomorrow!

November 4, 2010 at 12:12 AM  
Blogger Susannah said...

That's so beautiful, and such a special thing for sisters. I think I'll make some for my nieces and nephews for christmas :) Maybe more a gift to their moms, though...

November 4, 2010 at 10:40 AM  
Blogger Kelden said...

I looove this! So cute!

November 5, 2010 at 12:53 PM  
Blogger mommy2luke2008 said...

Love these ideas! I'm thinking of making them for my mom for Christmas!!! I featured this on my friday favorites!

November 5, 2010 at 12:55 PM  
Blogger Amy S. said...

I have never used Distressed Ink before. How do you apply yours?

December 1, 2010 at 9:38 PM  
Blogger brown paper packages said...


It's really easy! It looks just like a regular ink pad, except that the pad is raised. Then you just rub the pad along the edges of your paper, or anywhere else that you would like to apply it. It's about $5, at a scrapbook or hobby store.

December 1, 2010 at 9:47 PM  
Blogger Speckled Kat said...

I LOVE this idea! I will be stealing this one ;)
What type of mod podge did you use?

December 24, 2010 at 6:36 PM  
Blogger MiMi said...

Nice craft. What do you think of a discounted photo paper for those photos?

March 28, 2011 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Miss Dot said...

I love this idea! I'm going to make them to give to both my mother and my husband's mother for Mother's Day since it's their first year celebrating as grandmothers! :D I do have a question, though: are the photos printed on cardstock or on photo paper? I assume cardstock since that's what you listed under your supplies but I wanted to make sure :) I didn't want to try it and find out the mod podge made it bleed or something!

April 14, 2011 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger kierste @ brown paper packages said...

Miss Dot! I'm happy to see you!

They are actual photos that I had developed, but you could certainly print them on cardstock. The cardstock I had listed is for the title, and for matting.

April 14, 2011 at 1:03 PM  

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