What I Made: {String States}

I have been inspired.

Pinterest inspires me.

I love finding crafts that a) I am capable of, b) Are cheap, c) I actually have space for in my home.

Now this craft didn't originally have a space, I had to move some things, but I just couldn't pass it up.

The reason this craft called to me was because, um, its completely adorable, and also because I had the genius idea that I should have one for each state in which we have lived in.

And I am obsessed.

Let me tell you though, it wasn't easy, getting all those nails evenly spaced and in a straight line. Then there was the string. What is the method? How do I know which nail to go to? How do I pull off this look of organized chaos!?

I am a directions kinda girl and because this idea was originally pulled off of Etsy, there wasn't much direction.

But I'm loving the outcome.

Utah. Oklahoma. And a third. Hmmm. Wonder what state that will be. I have my guesses. But I'm keeping it a secret!

So how did I do it?

First, I bought the wood. I just went to Lowe's and bought me the cheapest piece of flat wood that I could find, that would give me the size and shape that I wanted. This one was perfect and divided into thirds made it the perfect size....no wasted wood! {I also picked me up some small gold nails. Do not buy them at a craft store silly, that would just be a rip off.}

Then, I found the state outlines online. I made sure to pick them from the same website {a small dose of OCD coming out}. Then I printed. And printed. And resized and printed. I wanted the states to be slightly proportional to one another. And also to fit the piece of wood nicely.

Then I sanded. And stained. And waited.

Now the next part I must tell you to leave up to your imagination because I wouldn't say that my way of doing it was the best. I took the outlines and cut around about a 1/4" from the edge. Then I centered it on my wood and took a small piece of tape to hold it in place. Then I nailed. And nailed. I nailed through the paper directly on the line. Then when I got all the nails in, I ripped the paper out. And unfortunately, when I was nailing the nails in, it took the paper down in the wood with it, therefore leaving little bits of paper stuck in between most of the nails and the board. So I removed it as best as I could and then decided that it was a battle that just wasn't going to be won, so I had to set my OCD aside and move on.

Then came the string. This I did buy at the craft store. I just used Nylon thread, which I found near the yarn section. I tied a small knot on one of the nails and went for it. Again and again and again. Until it was about the thickness that I wanted. {Don't know if thickness is the right term, but you know, until the state was about the way I wanted it to look.} Then I tied another knot to another nail to finish it off.

Then. Just to secure things. I took me some Elmer's glue, and put a little dot of glue on both my knots, and then also on the string that was touching the outside of the nail. Didn't want anything moving out of place.


  1. I have been wanting to do one of these for a while - I just have to wait to go back home to do it!
    Yours turned out sooo good! I love it!

  2. This is so cute!! I want to make one! And I cannot get enough of pinterest. Love your blog! Newest reader :)

  3. Those were really popular in the 80's and 90's. My sister has one that's all colorful