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DIY Ohio State String Art

I made this piece for a friend of mine, but these same techniques could be used to make any of the states or even countries you would like. 


  1. String of your choice of color.  You can choose more than one color if desired.  
  1. Wood for the backing to place the piece on.  My piece of wood is actually a drawl from a dresser that was broken and a friend was throwing away.   
  1. Nails  
  1. Hammer  
  1. If you want to hang your piece when you are finished, then you will also need a hanging bracket piece.   
  1. Picture of desired shape.   

To start, print off a picture of the piece you are wanting to make.  Make the picture to scale.  So, the picture should be the exact size you want your string art piece to be.  Note: this picture will get ruined, so do not use a picture you are not okay with it getting damaged.  Lay your picture on top of your piece of wood.  Next Place nails and hammer them into the wood and thus your picture around the entire outside of your design.  Make sure to place the nails fairly close together so there are no gaps when applying the string.  If you are doing a design inside the other design like I did (State of Ohio with heart inside), then you will need to also place nails around the outline of your second design as well.  Once you place all of your nails, remove your picture.  I did this by just tearing it out.  If you are going to hang this piece on the wall, then I would hammer the hanging bracket piece now.  The hammering latter on may disrupt the string later on.   

state string art

Pick a starting point and tie a knot with your string around one of the nails. I recommend doing a double knot to ensure it stays in place.  You may do whatever pattern you would like with your string, but if you like the design I have, then follow these next instructions.  Go directly across from your starting nail and wrap your string around this nail.  Now go directly across, but one nail over (I went to the right, but this does not matter) and wrap the string around this nail.  Continue doing this pattern all the way around your design, go directly across and one nail over, wrap, and repeat.  Note: since the outer design will have more nails than the inside design, you will need to use some of the inside nails multiple times when wrapping.  In my design there was one inside nail that actually needed to be wrapped/connected by four outside nails.  Once you finish your outside pattern, you should be back where you started, make a double knot with your string on this nail.   

state string art

You could be finished here, or you could also apply a string design to your inside pattern.  If you decide to cover the inside pattern with string, then I recommend choosing a different color of string than you chose for the outside design.  This will allow it to stand out more and not blend together.  For the inside tie your new string to one of the nails in a double knot.  Then, wrap the string around another inside nail of your choosing.  Continue to wrap the string around just the inside nails until all of them have been wrapped at least once.  You could also choose to do a pattern on this inside piece or just the random design I just described.  Make sure you end on the nail you started with (it looks nicer to have less knots all over your design) and make a double knot to end.  Cut off any extra string from the knotted ends.   

state string art

If you liked this post, then you may also find my string art paw print interesting. Click here to read my string art paw print post.

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