In 2010, using twine for crafty stuff was a big trend, and it 's still going strong. I don't imagine the use of this classic craft material going anywhere anytime soon. It brings nature in to the home with a rustic farmy feel - something like Pottery Barn and Anthropologie.
This twine inspiration is from my mom. One of my Christmas gifts from her this year was a family name sign with the lettering done in twine. I am so in love with it! Although an extremely cheap project (or gift for that matter) it is very time consuming. I guess that statement might be of opinion depending on the word and letters you have to deal with. My mom did two family names, "FORD" and "BERMEA" - lucky for her she got out of doing my sister's married family name, "SUTHERLAND". That might have pushed her over the brink of sanity, especially after already having made two others.
So on with the how-to. Neither my mom nor I have seen this done with lettering anywhere but on Sense and Simplicity by Gracie - Letters Made From Twine. This post is a great opener for this type of project, but doesn't exactly cover complications that come up with each letter in the alphabet. Boy, did she miss out on some headaches you run in to with some other letters.
The supplies are really low-maintenence: Heavy-Thick Cardboard, Knife to cut (the cardboard), Lot's of thick Jute Twine, Glue (hot glue or otherwise) and scissors. If you don't want to wing it on the lettering, you can find and print bubble letter stencils for your tracing to the cardboard.
Super Pointers (tips):
1. Any letter with an end (see the difference between the "O" and the "J" and "Y" in the above picture) will need holes punched-gouged through the center tip. Make the holes a decent size because it'll get crowded as you start re-using it to make the ends.
2. Wrap the ends of the lettering first in a seashell shape covering all tips.
3. You might come across areas's of the lettering where it might seem impossible to get coverage without making a huge lumpy thickness of twine over a spot - my mom came across this issue on a few letters. The solution: glue down fake-wrapped strips. Check out my example using the letter "B". With so many rounded area's and in-betweens it was easier to glue fake-wrap down.
I secured mine on the wall using jagged picture hanger teeth and, since they were so light, Push Pins instead of nails. I put this right in my foyer as you walk in the front door and it has become an inspiration piece to actually do something attractive with my foyer. And before anyone mentions it, we know, the "M" turned out smaller than the other letters - one we'll re-do.
Originally my mom was going to mount each letter on to fabric covered foam board (thick kind), but she didn't finish them as far as that part of the project went and I liked them so much as-is we kept them like this. You could easily make one single letter with the family name like "B" for "BERMEA" and mount it on a fabric or linen covered foam board and you have a very quick project.
Adding Colour. Jute Twine generally comes in two colours, Green and Brown. You can find it at most hardware and gardening stores. As before, I'd suggest buying there instead of the craft store as the price might be higher for less product (why do craft stores have to do that?). I came across these FANTASTIC colours in both striping and solids that would make a finished wrap look fabulous!! You could make a permanent "HAPPY BIRTHDAY" sign? (ok, granted a lot of work). This coloured twine is offered from Not On the High Street (notonthehighstreet.com). Unfortunately for me, it's UK based. Here are some comparable options, but I'm not finding colours like the UK ones. I'm sure they're out there, just keep google-ing.
Pack n Seal - www.packandseal.com
PaperMart - www.papermart.com
ArtFire - www.artfire.com
Etsy Search Result for "Colored Jute Twine" in Supplies