Sunday, March 20, 2011

Don't Shell Out Big Bucks for Shell Art!

I <3 Williams Sonoma. We registered here for our wedding, and the pots and pans we received are one of my favorite wedding gifts - I'm obsessed with them! We can justify expensive investments in high quality necessities such as pots and pans, especially since we both love to cook. However, I could not justify shell-ing out the big bucks for their new line of shell wall art:
Form & Pheromone, Achromic Starfish
Williams Sonoma
Form & Pheromone, Terebra Pinon
Williams Sonoma
Form & Pheromone, Cone Shells
Williams Sonoma

Form & Pheromone, Achromic Starfish
Williams Sonoma
Form & Pheromone, Spider Conch
Williams Sonoma

Form & Pheromone, Lilac Urchins
William Sonoma



 
Williams Sonoma

I find all of the art above to be beautiful. I love how this shell artwork is obviously coastal but is also very elegant and beautiful. There are so many substyles of coastal decor (nautical, cottage, tiki, etc.) and coastal decor is most commonly seen in those substyles. The above art by WS is so elegant and differs from how I usually see coastal decor portrayed. So now that I've shared the positives about the shell art above, it's time for the only drawback...which is a pretty big one, at that. The WS shell art above ranges in price from $355-475 a piece. The arrangement of artwork in the last picture above would cost well into the thousands. Um, that's crazy. I wouldn't even spend that on my beloved WS pots and pans.


So, feeling bolstered by last week's $20 success with recreating a $300 piece of Crate and Barrel artwork (post here), I felt confident I could create my own version of the WS shell artwork. I pulled out my glue gun decided to recreate the purple sea urchin artwork because our master bedroom is lacking artwork and also happens to be purple (for now). This project cost me $11.00 and here's the end result:






Here's the how to:


1) I ordered purple sea urchins off Ebay. I ordered in bulk (15 sea urchins) ranging in size from 1.5-2 inches. I knew I would only be using 9 sea urchins, but I wanted to have extras as I knew the sizes may fluctuate a bit. I planned to use the 9 urchins that were closest in size. In sum, the 15 urchins set me back $6.60 and an additional $4.26 for shipping. I was thrilled when they arrived, because they were all in excellent quality and were all basically the same size. As result, I was able to pick the urchins I found to be the most beautiful and/or unusual versus selecting the top 9 urchins by size. I will definitely find a home somewhere in our house for the leftover urchins, too.






2) I had a large white (glass-less) frame purchased last summer at Walmart. I was going to use the frame for a project but it unfortunately didn't make it past our basement before the glass was shattered. Rather than tossing it, I saved it in the basement (along with other unused frames) for the future perfect project.






3) I added a sheet of iridescent 8.5 x 11" paper I had leftover from our wedding. If I didn't have this paper, I probably would have used white cardstock, which I always have laying around. In this picture, you can kind of pick up on the iridescence:




4) I arranged the 6 sea urchins onto the paper. I was then going to measure off each location to ensure they were equally spaced...but I was feeling lazy (it was Sunday morning) and I also couldn't find a ruler in our house (crazy, since I'm an elementary teacher and have boxes upon boxes of school supplies) so I just eye-balled their placement.




5) I used a glue gun to adhere the urchins into place.




6) I hung my new $11 artwork upstairs in our bathroom:
















After hanging the artwork, the hubs and I went out and picked out a new farmhouse sink for our kitchen with the moolah I saved from this project. Well, that is sort of true. We knew that we wanted to get a farmhouse sink and we were going to do that regardless of this art ol' art project. I only bring this up because the farmhouse sink even costs less than the WS shell art!


I definitely plan to make some more of these...I have tons of leftover shells from our wedding and some random frames in our basement still. Anyone else out there recently recreate something for much less than the original sticker price??


I am linking up to the following link parties this week:

33 comments:

  1. Oh that is such a great idea!!!

    Ok, one question for you...how do you link up to so many linky parties? How many hours does it take you to link to all of them and then document all of them at the bottom of your post??

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  2. Very cute!! I think yours is so much prettier then the ones from Williams Sonoma. Very pretty bathroom!

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  3. Wow! I am completely impressed and completely inspired!

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  4. These are beautiful! Love how simple and pretty they are.. Hope you will share with my Pink Hippo Party @ http://pinkapotamus.blogspot.com/2011/03/pink-hippo-party-21.html

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  5. Love the art and love the title!

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  6. looks like I have to copy this idea for my guest bath!

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  7. I'm so glad everyone loves this product! AmieAnn, I would be happy to join your party! I'll be be over soon! xo

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  8. Hi Greenbrae,
    Good question & I have this down to my own little system! :-) Step 1) I have all of my links simply saved by party date (Mon, Tues, etc.) under my "Link Party" page (see top of my site). When I create a new post that I know I'll be sharing at parties, I simply copy and paste the contents of my "Link Party" page at the bottom of the post. That takes a few seconds total. Very easy. Step 2) When it's time for me to link up to parties for the day, I simply open the websites and add my posts to the parties. This takes a bit longer, usually around 15 minutes each day. I do this while I'm having my morning coffee and I also use the time to peruse all of the new projects floating around out there. Hope this helps!! xo, Erin

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  9. I love this. I know what you mean about it being different than typical coastal decor. It's more understated and sophisticated. I would love to do something like this soon.

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  10. This came out beautifully!!! Off to Ebay to get me some urchins!!!

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  11. Awesome! Love the purple shades, too. You are my kinda girl.

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  12. Beautiful--they look great in your bathroom!

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  13. I love this and the colors are perfect in your bathroom.
    Hugs,
    Sherry

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  14. I love it - beautiful art for the bathroom. I also recently made some seashell art and would love if you'd check it out:

    http://decoratingdiy.blogspot.com/2011/03/everybodys-gone-surfinsurfin-usa.html

    Kristen

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  15. Wow - so great!! I'd love for you to submit this to the M&T Spotlight at http://www.makeandtakes.com/spotlight

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  16. Love how this turned out. I could do this now that you have shown how easy it is! Thanks for joining JFF this week. hugs, Linda

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  17. This is so beautiful. I have got my eye on some shells on eBay right now...thank you for your post.

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  18. Those look beautiful. I've actually got some framed keys inspired by Restoration Hardware linked up to Finding Fabulous this week. How would we know how to decorate our homes without those stores? ;)

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  19. what a simple and elegant idea...no need to spend the big bucks when a little creativity will suffice...love how yours turned out...thanks for sharing at ff!

    blessings,

    alison
    stuff and nonsense

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  20. Love your style...I'm a new follower.

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  21. Absolutely GREAT! Do come link it up with us at our DIY CRAFT TUTORIAL LINKY PARTY,
    http://www.finecraftguild.com/diy-craft-tutorials-party-32/

    Love to feature you also, when you enter the party in the next week.

    Rose

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  22. What a great idea! I have a bunch of seashells that we brought back from our honeymoon that I have been trying to think of something to do with...great idea!

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  23. I am in the process of doing a similay project! So fun to see yours and it turned out beautiful!

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  24. That looks great! I did a similar thing last year for a master bedroom redo. I used colorful scallop shells on a burlap background. I'd love to use the urchins in my living room, and I have a local shell shop! Thank you for the inspiration. Who pays the WS prices???????

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  25. These are great and I want to make them for Mother's Day. And later, one for myself! Are those 11x12 frames?

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  26. Love your sea urchins! You inspired me to frame some shells too (HERE)!

    -caroline @ c.w.frosting

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  27. well done, your creative ideas make for a wonderful addition to the home décor

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