Sunday, September 27, 2009

Photo Blocks

One of my responsibilities for my son's wedding last month was to arrange the rehearsal dinner. So I decided to make my own table decorations for the dinner. I found this idea at the Alpha Mom Once Upon a Holiday blog. This particular blog entry was by Marie LeBaron THANK YOU, MARIE!!!. You can get the whole step-by-step tutorial at that location, so I'll just talk about how I made my version.

My son helped by supplying the blocks, and for sanding and rounding the corners on most of them for me. I primed and then painted them in a kind of wine color, as that was the bride's color choice for the wedding. The sizes of my blocks ranged from about 3" square to 6" square, and one oblong block that I used, too.

After the paint was dry I used very fine sandpaper to roughen up the edges and corners a tad bit, but I wanted the older, weathered look.

I used ModPodge to apply photocopies of my photos to five sides of the cubes. I have some old wooden thread spools that worked well to hold the cubes up off the newspaper while they dried. On my first, trial block, I used a couple actual photographs, but decided I wanted a thinner paper. Copying the photos on a copier worked, but
I used an ink jet printer. That meant the ink reacted with the water in the ModPodge, which made the photos appear a little "fuzzy." Might be an interesting look, but I decided I wanted the photos to be clearer. So I took them to a copy shop that used a laser jet printer.

I applied several coats of ModPodge, lightly sanding with fine sand paper between layers. I used some fine steel wool to smooth the last layer.

These blocks were a fun decoration at the rehearsal dinner, and a good conversation starter. They got passed from one table to the next during the evening. After the wedding, I cut felt squares the size of the various blocks, and glued them to the bottoms of the blocks. Now, if the bride and groom wish, they can set these on a book shelf or table for a decoration.


  1. What a perfect idea for a wedding. They turned out great! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thank YOU, Marie, for the idea. It was a lot of fun using these old photos.

  3. What a wonderful centerpiece! Thanks for sharing.