Friday, June 10, 2011

Retro Kitchen Art

What you'll need for this:
epoxy or other strong glue
empty can of tuna
8 wooden spoons
acrylic paint and paintbrush or sponge brush
picture hanger or other means of hanging on wall

I recently moved into an average apartment with average rooms and average walls.  This meant my kitchen was, of course, average. 

And very white. 

And very ugly.

I decided I needed something, big, bold and Free to put on the ugly wall.

As always when I need inspiration I took a trip down the aisles of Tarzhay. I drooled over the ironic, the kitschy, the ultra-modern-but-super-retro-at-the-same-time. I lamented my empty walls and emptier wallet. 

My eyes focused in on a print in a one-foot squared, silver frame. The print was of brightly colored and intersecting cutlery on a white background. I thought:

Wow, Targ├ęt has kitchen art of stuff you have in your kitchen! 

Then my head exploded.

After cleaning up the mess, I gathered 8 wooden spoons of various size and an empty can of tuna fish.  

After asking for the obligatory Fb opinions I decided the color of the spoons should be a smooth chocolately brown.

                  ---runs out to get some smooth chocolately chocolate---

I used Folk Art brand acrylic paint #462, Burnt Umber. I knew the wood would absorb a lot of the color so I choose something a little darker than chocolate.

This is what I came up with at first:

I guess I was thinking it was going to look something like a sunburst.

But then I decided I didn't like that idea.

So I turned the spoons around.

And went for something like this.  (<---click to see much cooler versions of this project I made)

I used epoxy to attach the spoons to the back of the tuna can. This was both efficient and made a more interesting piece by adding some depth with having the open part of the can facing out.

I did have a little trouble getting the spoons to attach. Because the outer ends were heavier than the ends glued to the can they kept being pulled down, thus releasing the adhesion. This was fixed by adding a piece of cardboard to the back so that the spoons were then sandwiched between it and the cardboard.

In order to hang it on the wall I put in a picture hanger, making sure to drive the small nails through the actual spoon of course.

And this is how she ended up:

2 sets of four wooden spoons, 88 cents each
Folk Art paint, 89 cents

*It has been brought to my attention that this piece would make a great clock. Personally I wanted the focus to be on the materials I used, not on its function as a clock but it could easily be modified to add a clock to the center piece.


  1. Love it! I might use some other wooden tools- like spatulas- along with the spoons. GETTING FUNKY!

  2. Good idea! That one could be "patio art" next to your bbq!