Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Personalising a ukulele

How it arrived, I've already removed the strings and machine heads.
 J has decided that it is time to learn the banjo. He picked up one cheap with a dodgy repair... it promptly broke. He has since been keeping his eyes open for another that he could afford but in the meantime, in a moment of madness, he snapped up this little ukulele. As he doesn't appear to intend to learn to play it I am left confused as to why he bothered but, due to it's cheapness, I feel no guilt in giving it a makeover.
The whole body was decoupaged using an old atlas and PVA glue.
 The original faux wood finish was utterly knaff. The top photo was taken at night so doesn't show the true horror. My intention was to decoupage it in an old newspaper (I have an Edwardian one knocking about) but spotted the pages of an out of date atlas that was far more colourful. Using watered down PVA glue the paper was torn into odd shapes and stuck down.

Finished! We now have a unique musical instrument.
After several coats of varnish I have a finished refurbished ukulele. I replaced the strings which has given it a more mellow sound - if a ukulele can ever be described as mellow!

What I don't like about this is that the beautiful maps come off as quite garish on the finished instrument, I wish that I had stuck with the newspaper idea for some gentle sepia tones. But I'm not too bothered, we now have a playful looking instrument that can be knocked around without anybody worrying about it being too precious. I am surprised at how often I've picked it up for a play as I've not touched my guitar in a long time (it's tucked away as I don't want it to get bashed... I think that there's a message in here somewhere).

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