Paint Chip Mobile

I have been wanting to make this mobile for ages, and I finally got the right supplies. Paint chips are an obvious treasure for anyone who loves color as much as I do, and the interwebs are full of awesome projects people have done with them. Mine was designed to fill a very specific space: we have these little open windows between the kitchen and the living room and the kitchen and the dining room. The living room one is larger, and I filled it with jars of beans and grains. The window into the dining room is smaller, and it stumped me for a little while. But at last, inspiration dawned on me: I would make a colorful mobile, suspended on thin thread, to give the effect of bright colored circles floating in the space between the two rooms.

All I needed to get started was a circle punch and the paint chips. These are mostly in cool colors because I used the warm colors for another project, but I kind of like it that way. The punch cuts a circle about 1.5 inches in diameter, just what I had in mind, but they come in lots of different sizes.

I knew that I wanted each circle to have multiple colors, so I cut not only in the middle of the paint chip sheet, but along the edges. This way, I could get semi-circles in two colors to use as accents.

The next step was to glue the circles and semi-circles together. I found that a glue stick was the best tool for this. Nothing like feeling like a first-grader for the afternoon!

Then it was time for some math to calculate how many circles per strand and how far apart I should hang them. I show this mostly because I think it is hilarious, evidence of some tiny spark of engineering in me that was buried under thousands of tomes of Russian literature. Sometimes it cracks me up how my projects involve the kind of math problems I know I hated as a child. Good thing I learned how to do them anyway! Once I had properly reflected upon this, I got out my tape measure and my trusty silver thread and got to cutting and glueing.

For each circle, I glued the thread in between two circles, both facing out. This way, when the strands sway in the breeze, both sides will show bright color. I like it that there is no back side.

This only took about 15 minutes for four strands, and then I was ready to hang them. Because I wanted to create a floating effect, I simply taped the threads to the back of the opening of the window between the two rooms, though you could also attach them to a rod or stick for a more grounded look. I have to tell you, I amazed at how well this little project came out! It makes that awkward opening look kind of elegant, and it brightens up our drab kitchen. Huge thanks to my husband for taking this picture (and many others!)–making our kitchen  look this pretty is a work of art unto itself.

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