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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Zentangle Display Boards

Maria writes:
Here's a fun project!

In preparing for our upcoming Certified Zentangle Teacher Seminar, I created some very cool display boards. We use these for students to display their Zentangle creations for all to enjoy.

Rick comments:
Here is an example of some of the A-frames table top displays that Maria made for seminar. They are half inch foam core covered in muslin. Each pair is fabric hinged at the top. The tie keeps them from flattening out spontaneously. Maria created a Zentangle border on each outer panel. But if you want it plain, you just undo that tie and flip them around so the tangled frame is inside and the plain fabric is outside.

Here's a face on view of the one above done in mooka.

Here's another one . . .

. . . and a close up shot.

For black, Maria used a Sakura® IDentiPen dual tip black marker. For shading, she used a Fabrico® dual tip light gray marker.

Maria continues:
Then I thought, WOW, we could all use a couple of these in our home, office or classroom to display a great collection or one very special Zentangle.

Step 1
Go shopping for a big frame (or a really neat small one!). I have a lot of luck at yard sales or antique shops. You do not need a glass or backing,  just a frame, and it could be in so-so shape, as long as it is not falling apart. You might even find one in your attic or cellar with an old print in it that has seen its day. It can be scratched or dinged . . . you are going to transform it into a work of art!

Try for something at least 6 inches or larger. I prefer the 18 x 24 size,  you can put a bunch of tiles on that!

I love the real ornate Victorian frames, (who'd have guessed that one?), with the 4 or 5 inch wide frames . . . mmmmm.

Step 2
Spray paint! Choose black, grey or even gold! depending on your decor.

If the frame is already in good shape, you can disregard this step.

Brush off the dust and go outside and give it a couple of coats.

You might decide to do a couple of these at once . . . just as easy to do two!

Step 3
You will need either 1/2" or 2 sheets of 3/16" thick  Foam Board, cut to 1/4 " smaller than the opening of the frame. For example, an 8 x 10" frame needs 7 3/4 x 9 3/4" foam.

You can get this at art supply or frame shops. They may even have scraps or be willing to cut it for you.

Step 4
You will need some light colored (I suggest white or ecru) fabric. You can use canvas, linen. or even an old pillow case or sheet that has seen better days. In some place (many actually) I'll use patterned fabric like ones in our office (pix below).

Cut your piece of fabric to have a 2" border larger than your frame opening. (example: frame opening 8 x 10, cut fabric 12 x 14"). Iron fabric to get rid of all creases.

You can use either strong double face tape, adhesive transfer tape, carpet tape or common pins to secure the fabric to the foam board.

See diagram to cut excess fabric from the corners to alleviate some of the bulk when folding over the fabric.

Step 5
1. Put tape on all 4 sides about 1 inch from the edge.

2. Fold one side of fabric onto the tape on the back of the foam.

3. Fold opposite side, stretching the fabric taut as you can, eliminating any folds or creases.

4. Repeat on remaining sides.

5. You can pull fabric away from tape and readjust if necessary to stretch as needed.

6. Neaten up the corners with common pins or stitch them to secure.

Step 6
On the front of your board, draw a light pencil border about 1 inch from the edges. It can be 1/2 inch to 1 inch depending on the size of the frame.

You can use a ruler to mark equal distances from the edges, and remember the pencil lines will disappear.....under the tangles.

You can use a Micron 01, 02, 05, 08 or Graphic 1, depending on the weave of your fabric (the coarser the weave, the fatter the pen)

Test a few tangles on a scrap before doing the board.

Step 7
Now have fun filling in the border lines with tangles.

I sometimes use just one tangle all around, then add an "aura" or "perfs" all around that tangle.

When using more than one tangle, try doing a bit of that tangle then skip 2 inches and do it all around the border. Then choose another tangle and do it right next to the first, then repeat that one all around until you have pretty much completed it, then you can fill in open spots with aura, or perfs or blackening in the background. See some of my examples for guidance, but I know you'll come up with more ideas than I did!

I also used a "Fabrico" dual tip fabric marker to shade the edges and add character.

Step 8
Put the covered foam board into the frame, and secure with a few small nails.

Put a wire hanger on the back if there isn't already one there. I use "Blue Tack" (actually I like the white stuff better) on the bottom corners of the frame to secure it on the wall so it doesn't tilt.

Secure your favourite Zentangles to the beautiful new display board with common pins, making SURE you do not put holes in the tiles!!! Slip the pins in at an angle so they just rest on the pins.

Rick adds:
Here are a couple pix from around our office. This one is painted to match the wall, but the fabric sings.

This one houses some mounted Zentomology™ specimens!

Have fun!

Click images for larger view.


McMGrad89 said...

A great idea. I will have to save it for a future date. Thanks for sharing.

Francie said...

I love this! The only part that is confusing me is the dimensions of the foam board. Since it is cut smaller than the frame opening, won't it "fall through?"

Zentangle said...

I am an old framer and maybe I just assumed everyone would know what I was talking about. Thank you for making me clarify this, Francie. A frame is measured by the size of the art that goes into it. Basically an 8 x 10 frame is one that fits an 8 x 10 picture, not the outer dimension or the image area. So measure the opening on the BACK of the frame where the picture sets in. (This would be the same size as the glass or the backing board.) If this is not clear enough, please tell me. Writing directions for anything is an art for in itself, anyone who does it for a living will tell you this!

Anonymous said...

You guys are so awesome ~ thank you so much for the detailed information to make these ~ love, love, love them!

Lois Heinani Stokes said...

Love the idea of your A Frame table top Displays. This would be a great display for Demos as well as classes. Could you share how you do the fabric hinge at the top?

Zentangle said...

I would love to. Watch for future blogs......m

Francie said...

Thanks for clarifying! Now I understand.

Tricia, CZT said...

Another fabulous idea.... and great tutorial. Thank you.

Amy in TN said...

These are great ideas and instructions! I will have to try both of these!
I just completed a display board to show off tiles completed by an entire elementary school class...I used mat board as a base, posterboard and homememade, oversized photo corners to make a mini-frame for each tile, and the tiles are inserted into the homemade photo corners.
I think I like your way a bit better than mine....
Thanks for sharing a simple yet professional approach to showing off our and our students' artwork!

Heather Victoria Held said...

these borders are pure magic!!!!!!

Zentangle said...

Thanks, you guys....this was a fun project. And useful, too! Now, where will we put them when we are not using them.........M

jayjolou said...

"Not using them"? Maria? Rick? Really? You two are so creative, I would imagine the boards would be used constantly to view works in progress, finished works, ideas-of-the-night-watches, and would be particularly intriguing with the tiny tiles of equally tiny "Bijou." That's what I want to make--a board for Bijou-size tiles (have to order them from you first, but many design ideas are waiting for them!!)

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