A DIY Christmas Gift

I’d like to apologize for my lack of post on Friday – I forgot to mention that it was King’s Day here in Spain. The day was filled with gifts, food, family and friends, and it marked the end of the Christmas season for us. With that in mind, I’d like to share the DIY gift my boyfriend gave me this Christmas: a skyline of Chicago! We haven’t hung it up on the wall yet, but here’s a picture of it leaning against the board and batten treatment.

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It’s made of MDF, measures about 5 feet long and is 3 “layers” deep (meaning that it’s sort of three-dimensional). He doesn’t have pictures of  the whole process, but he says it was fairly easy to do (albeit time consuming):

  1. He found an image of the Chicago skyline, blew it up and printed it in 8 A3 sized sheets of paper, then joined them together with tape (he had to fudge the location of the Hancock Tower a bit so it would fit).
  2. Since he wanted the skyline to be three layers deep, he repeated step 1 three times, one for each layer.
  3. Then, he traced on paper with a pen the buildings he would be cutting on each layer, taking into account the ones that seemed closer in the photo should be the first, and those farther away should be in the third, etc.
  4. He cut all three silhouettes with scissors. Apparently this step took a loooong time.
  5. He traced each silhouette onto a 1cm thick MDF.
  6. He cut each silhouette using a jigsaw (borrowed from a friend), with the blade that is used for curves. Each one took about one hour, so three hours total.
  7. Then he primed and painted each piece, which he tells me was the worst part because of all the nooks and crannies.
  8. Finally, he drilled holes for the antennas of some of the buildings and screwed the three pieces together.

Doesn’t it look awesome? I was completely surprised when I saw it! We had discussed doing something like this a few months ago but never really started it, so I had forgotten about it already. It was such a sweet and thoughtful gift! I can’t wait to hang it, although it’ll have to wait a while since we still have to shorten the living room cabinets so it fits above them.

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And what was his Christmas gift, you might be wondering? Well, I bought him a vintage camera from Etsy. It’s German, from the 1930s. It was something he wanted and I was finally able to find a cool-looking one for a not-so-expensive price. But, you know, this gift sort of pales in comparison next to the one he got me!

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What do you think? Share your opinion in the comments.

11 thoughts on “A DIY Christmas Gift

    1. Ainhoa Post author

      I know! I couldn’t believe he did all of it himself. While I was opening the gift I thought he had bought it somewhere and was telling him he shouldn’t have spent so much money, but then I realized it was handmade by him!

    1. Ainhoa Post author

      I was born there, actually! And although the typical thing would’ve been to do the NYC skyline, he’s only ever been to Chicago (it’s the only place in the US he’s visited) so it was more appropriate.

    1. Ainhoa Post author

      Haha, my mom said exactly the same thing when she saw it! He should sell those on Etsy!
      We actually talked about it and apparently there’s a tool to make it easier/faster so if I ever decide to open an Etsy store we could think about investing on one :)

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