DIY String Art

So this post is WAAAAAY overdue, but I guess better late than never right…Right!

For our second wedding anniversary (which was actually 5 months ago) we wanted to make something together rather than buy each other the traditional cotton gifts so I started scouring the internet for ideas, hello pinterest my old friend!

We decided it needed to be something decorative, since our apartment wasn’t feeling quite as homey as we’d have liked at that point. After lots of umming and aahing we settled on making a string art piece to hang above our bed. That decision was actually really easy when compared with having to decide what the art would be of! It literally took us weeks to decide on what we wanted, it had to be personal since it was an anniversary project.

We chose to make the sheet music of the chorus line of our first dance song! *Awwwwww* So cheesy but so cute!

The next big mission was finding the right supplies, we first tried making this with a cork board like all the other tutorials suggest but found that the cork doesn’t hold the nails well enough! Also it’s much harder than you think to find a wooden board and paint when all the shops in the UK are so shittyly named – there is no “Builder’s Warehouse” – NO! There is however B & Q – whatever the hell that stands for. And if you are walking down the street and you pass that shop for the first time you literally have no cooking clue what they sell. Thank you google for enlightening us about these things!

So once we had our supplies we could get down to fun part of actually making this thing!

I cant remember how much everything cost, but it was definitely less than £20 and it’s not too difficult, you could easily make it in an afternoon depending on how intricate your design is.


  • Wooden board cut to size – we used a precut oak shelf
  • Matt interior wood paint in your colour of choice
  • Small nails with a small head
  • Cotton string in your colour of choice
  • Your design (Riaan drew ours by hand)


  • Hammer
  • Paintbrush
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Scissors

DSC_0614We gave the board a thin coat of paint and left it to dry for a couple of hours followed by another two decent coats of paint to get a good even finish.

Once the paint had dried, using a ruler and pencil we plotted the dots for the first part of our design, the lines for the sheet music. We had to do this in two steps, but if your design is a picture you can just place it on the board and and plot all your dots in one go.

DSC_0782Next we knocked in the nails, one on each dot, and then starting at one point I attached the string to a nail making a small knot around the nail and strung the string along the design, pretty much like a connect the dots picture, looping it around each nail as I went along, to ensure the string stays nice and taut. When all the dots have been connected I would knot the string around the last nail and snip it as close as possible to the nail for a neat finish.

DSC_0786Then we plotted the dots for the actual sheet music and knocked in the nails. The more intricate the design, the more nails you need. The distance between the nails depends on the shape and curve of the design, round edges will need more nails spaced closer to one another as opposed to straight lines where the nails can be spaced far apart.

DSC_1045DSC_1046For each note I started at the top of the note, attaching the string to the first nail, again making a small knot around the nail and strung the string along the note, looping it around each nail as I went along. For the long neck parts of the notes I would double back with the string so that I had two strands running along the length of the note to make it look a little fuller. For the round parts of the music notes I made a design by first circling around the outside of the circle, then criss-crossing the string through the middle of the circle. I did the same pattern of criss-crossing on all of the circles so they all look the same.

Don’t worry if you make mistakes with the nails, you can just pull them out and flip the board over and start again on the other side, or if the mistake isn’t too bad you can just pull out the nails and paint over the holes, it’s barely recognisable!

DSC_1041DSC_1043I finished it off with a plain string border around the edge of the board and we hung it above the bed using nailless hanging strips. 

I’m so happy with how it turned out, a nice easy cotton anniversary art piece!

Thanks for stopping by, for more DIY projects click over here.

Until next time,


  1. Tyler Leigh

    This is just so clever! I love it!
    Such a beautiful piece of art too!

  2. Mariaan

    LOVE IT!

  3. debby mccoll

    Its so unique and awesome

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

en_GBEnglish (UK)
en_GBEnglish (UK)
%d bloggers like this: