Miss Mink’s Framed Table Numbers

Before we started wedding planning, I had two speeds when it came to DIY projects: full speed or full stop. I almost never chipped away at a project slowly. I did it all or I didn’t do it. When it came to making our table numbers, I went full speed and got them done…three different times.

I mentioned my first project when I talked about my table number inspiration pictures. I made clay plaques to use as numbers and I didn’t like them. The second round was with IKEA Tolsby frames, which seem to have become a staple of wedding DIYers. I liked the frames, but they didn’t really go with our wedding’s style. Finally, I decided to use this Style Me Pretty picture as inspiration for my third and final attempt at table numbers:

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From Style Me Pretty / Photo by Shannon Lee Images


I love fabric. I knew I could find a fabric that worked with our colors if I searched long enough. I looked locally, I looked while I was on a business trip, and I looked online. I found plenty of possibilities, but one fabric stood out among the thousands of swatches I saw. It was a Robert Allen for Dwell Studio fabric that I saw at Calico Corners. While the colors weren’t right, the feel of the fabric was.

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Vintage Plumes by Robert Allen in the Birch colorway / Photo by Miss Mink

After looking around, I realized that it came in a blue colorway, but Calico Corners didn’t have that in stock. I took the sample home with me and decided that it would be perfect for a few wedding projects. The $70 per yard price, on the other hand, was not perfect.

A quick check online showed that most online fabric stores were selling the fabric for around $56 per yard. While this is an okay price for upholstery fabric, it’s not great for something that’s going to be used in crafts. I debated for a few days while I looked for other options. Nothing compared. I ordered two precious yards. When it arrived, I unrolled the fabric and couldn’t help starting at it for a while. Isn’t it pretty?

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Vintage Plumes by Robert Allen in the Jade colorway / Photo by Miss Mink

My next task was to find some nice, but relatively inexpensive frames. I imagined wood frames with a weathered, silver finish looking great with my fabric. Stores like TJ Maxx and Marshall’s had plenty of frames, but couldn’t find too many multiples of the ones I liked. Michael’s and Hobby Lobby had a few possibilities, but nothing jumped off the shelf at me.

On a whim, I went into a craft store called Ben Franklin while in Richmond one evening a couple weeks ago. I remember there being a Ben Franklin in a neighboring town when I was growing up, but the store had closed long ago. A staff member told me that they originated in Richmond, VA and only operate seven stores now, all of which are in Virginia. As luck would have it, they had the perfect frames. The price on them was so low that I had to ask if it was correct.

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Photo by Miss Mink

I had thought I’d spend about $10 per frame originally and I wound up spending just over $12 for all ten frames!

Next I had to pick a paint color for the wooden numbers that would be mounted on my Robert Allen fabric and framed in my $1.20 frames. Mr. Mink was a champ as I debated colors in the paint aisle at the craft store. He didn’t see a difference between the two colors I decided to test. I thought there was a clear winner. I painted each number, then sprayed them all with a matte, acrylic top coat.

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The paint on the right won / Photo by Miss Mink

Assembling all the pieces was my favorite part. The weave of my fabric wasn’t tight, so I flipped the frame liner and glued it to the back of the frame so black wouldn’t show through in the end. I cut ten, 4×6 rectangles of my precious fabric and used a Mod Podge to mount them on the back of each picture frame. Mod Podge has a formula specifically for fabrics, but I used a jar of the basic kind that I had on hand and that worked just fine.

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Photos by Miss Mink

I let the glue and Mod Podge dry for a while, put the frames together, and then glued the painted numbers to the fabric with light, even strokes of hot glue. Start to finish, the assembly part of this project took about an hour and a half, not counting drying time.

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Photo by Miss Mink

I have to admit that I was almost giddy over how well this project turned out! This might be my favorite DIY so far!

What have been your favorite DIY projects?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Mink

Location:
Charlottesville, Virginia
Wedding Date:
June 2012
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  1. Member
    lmsumins 35 posts, Newbee @ 10:24 am

    I LOVE those!!!

  2. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:26 am

    @lmsumins: Thank you so much!

  3. Member
    candy apple 1877 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:37 am

    So pretty! That fabric is beautiful.

  4. Guest Icon Guest
    Msbryt, Guest @ 10:37 am

    These are gorgeous. We are planning a very similar project, except instead of fabric, we were going to use craft paper for the background. We may end up changing our minds after we do one, however it is something we have on hand and are hoping it works out well. :) I would love to know where you bought your numbers though. I love how simple but yet 3-d they are.

  5. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 10:43 am

    @Mrs. Candy Apple: Thanks! I kind of want to use the fabric in our home, too. I love it!

    @Msbryt: I got the numbers at Michael’s craft store. They were in the back of the woodworking aisle, in little cubbies.

  6. Member
    Coffee cup 2319 posts, Buzzing bee @ 11:17 am

    Those look really pretty I love the blue you used for the numbers.

  7. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 11:19 am

    @Coffee cup: Thanks! Mr. Mink wasn’t totally sure why I was giving so much time to the paint selection, but I think I made a good choice!

  8. Member
    hawk 1117 posts, Bumble bee @ 11:38 am

    These turned out really beautifully!

  9. Member
    daybyday 2637 posts, Sugar bee @ 12:09 pm

    Maybe this is just . . . me being obtuse but those two paint colors look IDENTICAL. And all of this for TABLE NUMBERS? They aren’t even the focal point! Some of this wedding stuff I just don’t understand. I guess that’s why I’m not a Bee.

  10. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 12:23 pm

    @daybyday:
    No one is saying you have to do these projects. Clearly, weddings are highly personal events and more and more couples are finding ways to infuse their style into aspects that were traditionally quite generic.

    This isn’t just a function of the Bee. Wedding blogs are full of great inspiration for how we can be creative with details with handmade items. It’s a nice alternative to the mass-produced items that are being sold by many companies that cater to people planning a wedding.

    As you can see, the project too less than two hours…not really a huge effort and the visual impact is quite nice, in my opinion.

  11. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 12:24 pm

    @daybyday: Regarding the paint colors, I’m a design blogger and am the first to admit that I’m particular about color. I am the first to poke fun at myself for it! Mr. Mink didn’t see a different, either.

  12. Member
    Coffee cup 2319 posts, Buzzing bee @ 12:26 pm

    @Miss Mink: Men uh? Lol. The overall looks great, I just wish you gave us a front picture.

  13. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 12:28 pm

    @coffeecup: I was letting everything dry yesterday and didn’t stand the frames up as a result. I’ll get an upright picture soon. :)

  14. Member
    TinyTina 3312 posts, Sugar bee @ 12:47 pm

    Wow those are beautiful!! Love the fabric.

  15. Member
    trailmix 6663 posts, Bee Keeper @ 12:58 pm

    I really love these!!

  16. Guest Icon Guest
    Stephanie Marie, Guest @ 1:23 pm

    YAY! These look amazing!! I’m so happy for how they turned out and I’m totally snagging this idea for my own wedding :)

  17. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:26 pm

    @TinyTina: Thanks! I’m loving the fabric, too. I used the edges for these frames, but I have some other projects in the works that will show off the main part of the design.

  18. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:28 pm

    @Mrs. Trail Mix: Thank you so much!

    @Stephanie Marie: Double yay! I hope you share some of your inspiration on your blog soon! I don’t even know what colors you’re into!

  19. Member
    sleepypanda 60 posts, Worker bee @ 2:01 pm

    I love your blog posts! Because I live in DC, I’ve already been inspired by you (thanks!) to drive all the way down to Richmond in January to seek out cheap bridesmaid dresses and now I know I’ll be heading to a Ben Franklin as well. Here’s hoping I have as much luck as you! PS I’m a little obsessed lately with trying to figure out cost-effective ways to make my wedding feel like my FI and I and not just mass-produced, cookie-cutter-ness, so I totally understand the time and effort that went into this. My biggest problem is that I get so caught up in inspiration images that I end up doing nothing, just being so overwhelmed by the crafty possibilities!

  20. Member
    PrincessPeeps 27 posts, Newbee @ 2:34 pm

    These look fantastic! What a steal of a deal on the frames. I’m doing table numbers that necessitate frames as well so I’ve been doing the thrift store and garage sale hunt for the last 6 months, then spray painting them. Awesome job. I think the splurge on the fabric was worth it.

  21. Member
    msdoe 639 posts, Busy bee @ 3:47 pm

    We have similar table numbers! I got my frames cheap cheap too :) Great job, they look beautiful!

  22. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 4:20 pm

    @sleepypanda: You’re probably headed to Lynchburg in January, but definitely get on the J. Crew headquarter’s mailing list so you hear about the next Richmond sale!

    Ben Franklin is small, but I was really happy with their selection!

    I can get paralyzed by inspiration pictures sometimes myself. Hence two failed attempts at making table numbers with clay and the Ikea frames. When I finally figured out what I wanted, it was easy to spring into action.

    @PrincessPeeps: I considered the same thing with some Hobby Lobby frames. I’m not crazy about that store, so I decided to sleep on the purchase…and wound up at Ben Franklin the same night!

    @Miss Doe: Thanks, Miss D!

  23. Member
    doily 1720 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:35 pm

    Those are adorable! I almost wish I was having a bigger wedding, just so I could do table numbers….almost! I love the colors!

  24. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 6:25 pm

    So pretty! The fabric really is beautiful.

  25. Member
    mink 2178 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:26 pm

    @Miss Doily: I’m thinking of picking up more frames and using some more fabric behind any little signs that need to be made (guestbook, bathroom baskets, etc.). Maybe you can do this even without table numbers? :)

    @Mrs. Pony: Thanks, Mrs. P!

  26. Member
    msbryt 331 posts, Helper bee @ 10:37 pm

    @Miss Mink: Thanks! I haven’t checked there, only Hobby Lobby. :) I can’t wait to start this project, despite having to make so many.

  27. Member
    mkim 611 posts, Busy bee @ 5:19 pm

    These are awsome! You have me now shopping for fabric.

  28. Guest Icon Guest
    FutureMrsKoop, Guest @ 7:18 am

    I have been trying to do something like this but michaels does not sell these small numbers anymore and I’ve looked everywhere!! Does anyone know of somewhere else that sells the thin numbers?

  29. Guest Icon Guest
    Caitlin, Guest @ 7:51 pm

    Thank you for the great idea! I did something similar and it did not take much time at all. They look like they would have taken much longer! It’s amazing how beautiful they have turned out. I was able to get my frames from local thrift stores. They are all different but still look great.

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