There were a couple of DIY ideas that became best sellers on Etsy, one of them being the state or country outline made with string and nails artwork. I thought this would make an awesome housewarming gift for my Puerto Rican or “Washiricans” friends but I couldn’t find one pre-made so I had to come up with a plan to make one. (During my search, I noticed many popular designs, some with a heart in the middle and some without, with states like Texas and Washington and countries like Mexico and USA prominently featured.)
Here’s what you need to make your own:
1. String or twine.
2. Wood backing.
3. Spray or craft paint.
5. Nails and sawtooth hanger. (I used the overage from dollar store picture hanging kits.)
These materials will need to be scaled for bigger projects. My creation was done on a pre-cut wood piece from Michael’s (<$4), 3 yds of string from Daiso (5 colors for $1.5), and hooks and nails from a picture hanging kit (<$2). I printed out the map of Puerto Rico on an 8.5 in x 11 in paper and it fit perfectly on the wood face. The heart was drawn on a very special location for my friends and I advice you to use a favorite city or landmark to place yours.
Start by painting the background with a color of your choice. (I used aqua/turquoise to simulate the ocean.) Then trace the outline of the state/country and heart on the painted surface, leaving room to add the hooks (at least half an inch from every corner).
Now, hammer the nails onto the surface. (Tip: Use a comb to hold nails in place and to level either wing it or create a tool cutting in half a pipe of 1″ PVC).
After you have leveled the nails, run the string through the nails, making sure you border the heart as you pass it. (In some models people made sure the heart has a quarter of the nails and they run the string four times through the same one.) Finally, drill pilot holes according to the hook screw size and install sawtooth hanging hooks. Voilà!
In my design the heart was painted but you can also use red string to fill it out. If you are recycling or reusing string you already have, consider doing just the outline if you don’t have enough material.
Hang on a wall and enjoy!