Project 21 Week 23 – Crayon Alphabet

I have been really excited about this project for a while, ever since I spotted it here.  I thought this was the cutest idea, and immediately rushed off to research where I could find nice cheap shadow boxes and crayons.  Flash forward a few weeks once I had assembled all my supplies, and this is what you get:

I chose the letter B to start in honor of my little guy Basel, my adorable long-haired dachshund puppy.  Not to mention, its just an interesting letter.  I was debating whether to do a B or to make a Z, which is my default letter of choice in honor of Zipper8Design.  But I decided to go with the B because I liked the curves.  Basically I used Photoshop to create a template with my letter in pale gray.  You can easily do this in Word also, but I love Photoshop and simply felt more comfortable using it.  I also found it helpful to be able to stretch the letter to make it taller and skinnier to better fit my frame.

Then once I had the letter sized appropriately I printed it out, cut the paper to size for my shadow box (purchased at Michaels, though I have my eye on some square frames at Ikea) and started cutting up my crayons.  I pretty much just cut and glued as I went, as opposed to laying out the full letter first like the original poster said to.  But then again I’m a pretty spontaneous person when it comes to crafting, and worse come to worse I could pull a crayon off if I had to.  (I did when the paper came unraveled on one small piece.)  I also chose to use my glue gun, because I use it whenever possible, but Elmer’s or Sobo glue would have also worked just fine.

The original poster had also broken her crayons into pieces, but I like clean straight lines and edges so I cut mine with my Olfa blade.  I simply marked the place, and then sort of cut as I spun the crayon around, and when it got close enough to the center the whole thing would cleanly break apart.  You can see the fun swirly pattern on the exposed crayon ends when you look closely, which I find kind of fun.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I grew up watching Sesame Street religiously and they did a segment about crayon production that still, to this day, is so vividly in my memory it is a bit scary.  (How do I know it is vividly in my memory?  Because I’ve watched it on youtube more recently and realized exactly how much I remembered.  And yes, I just watched it again right now and it really is awesome.  Is it me or do those crayons remind anyone of carrot sticks?  And why do all the factory workers look like grandparents?!)  Anyway, that video was all I kept thinking about as I made my letter B, (which is another adorable segment, but that’s for another time…)  There is just something so comforting and old school about a good Crayola crayon.

I think not only do these make cute teacher gifts as the original post suggests, but how adorable for a kids room?!  Or if you can find bigger longer shadow boxes you could do a whole monogram or a whole word!  Ok, maybe a short word.  But honestly, you can make anything you want out of crayons!!

I’ve also seen this project done with colored pencils, but those are a lot harder to cut plus they don’t have the visual interest along the length of the pencil like the crayon wrapper.  This could be fun with sharpened yellow pencils.  For some reason the simple look of those pencils doesn’t really bother me as much, maybe because there is already the assumption that it will be a simpler look given that its all one color.

Really there’s just a whole lot you can do with something as fun as crayons, especially if you still have a big box of them left over from when you were a kid.  (Mine melted together into one big glob about 10 years ago, hence the brand new crayons I used.)

So go out and have some multi-colored fun today!  Allison

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29 Responses to Project 21 Week 23 – Crayon Alphabet

  1. Serena says:

    What a great idea! I like the fact that you cut your crayons for a cleaner look. Thanks for sharing :0)

  2. Bryan says:

    This is a very interesting technique, thanks for sharing. :)

  3. Samantha says:

    That is so funny you mentioning Sesame Street and watching the crayon production. I can remember that like yesterday!

  4. Jenna Rogers says:

    Loved the post – featured this post in my Thrifty Thursdays blog today!

  5. Janet says:

    Love the idea! I remember the crayon factory, too. I saw it as a young mom.

  6. Sarah says:

    Love this! I did the same thing but instead of a letter in a shadowbox, I painted a canvas pink and made a whale out of the crayons. Thanks for the idea!

  7. makeitgiveit says:

    This is so cute. I LOVE all the great ideas on your blog I’ll be doing some similar ones for sure!

  8. rdem5 says:

    Wonderful idea! This would make a kid feel special with their initial in their room!

  9. Michelle says:

    Did you put the glass in the frame? It’s hard to tell in the pictures?

    • Yes, I kept the glass in the frame, I figured that way it wouldn’t collect dust! (Plus since the frame already came with the glass, why not…)

      You could certainly do a more irregular shape by making your own frame without glass (that’s always the most daunting part of trying to make your own frame) or just by using a solid back piece without a frame at all. For a child’s room it could be cute to cut a piece of sturdy foam core in the shape of a cloud or something and then spelling their whole name! Slightly more daunting, but would probably be pretty amazing in the end.

      Allison

  10. Kristine says:

    Allison- I just came across your AMAZING blog yesterday. I love crafty stuff, and as a recent unemployed grad I need stuff to keep me occupied. I too remember the crayon episode of Sesame Street, but Mr. Rogers also went to the Crayola factory- they made orange crayons. Although this seems like something perfect for a kid’s room, I’m making this for myself! Thanks for your wonderful ideas that use easy to gather and inexpensive items.

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  17. Mary VanAtta says:

    Awesome Idea can make an heirloom for the grandchildren

  18. Isabelle says:

    how would you do an I because my daughter’s name starts with an I

    • Well, it is all about the font that you use. If you use a Serif font (one with the little extra tabs on all the letters) an upper case I would have a top edge and a bottom edge. I would recommend opening up Microsoft Word, or some other word processing program, and type the letter “I” and make it really large, until it is roughly the size you would want in crayons. Then just play around with different fonts until you find one that makes an “I” with enough interest that it would look good in crayons. It is the same process for any letter, you will just have to be a bit pickier with a tricky letter like “I” and really choose your font carefully. But it is the same technique you would use for any other letter, by making a template in Word to print out and glue the crayons onto.
      -Allison

  19. cloey says:

    I love this idea! Is there any website i can download the letter? My kid’s teacher is Miss. M so I need something either Just letter M or Miss.M. Thanks!

  20. Debbie Jaques says:

    Where would I fibd picture’s of the whole alphabet done in crayons please

    • I only ever did the Letter B, but there are a lot of other people out there in the blog world who have made similar projects, you could probably search around online to find a bunch of other letters.

  21. Alean Gibbs says:

    Love it seen the nurse at the school I I sub teach it. She was making the letter (R). Thanks again for the art . I will do one for my great-granddaughter teacher.

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