I’ve never been one to leave things as they come. For some reason, whenever I acquire an item, whether it’s a brand new dress or an antique dresser, I always get the urge to change something about it; to make it my own in some way. This past Christmas, I was so psyched to get this pretty little ukulele – thanks, Dad!
I’d been learning a few songs here and there on my dad’s uke, so I was so excited to get one of my very own! As soon as I laid eyes on it, I couldn’t wait to play it, and I think I was equally as excited to decorate it. I had visions of whitewashing the little guy and covering it with dreamy designs, but after doing a bit of research, I found that any major paintjob might affect the sound quality… So instead I took a paint pen to it.
I must make a little disclaimer: I am not knowledgeable in the area of instruments with regards to the materials they’re made of and what may or may not alter the sound. If you’re interested in decorating your instrument but are nervous that it may impact the sound quality, I think it’d be best to talk to a music expert. I just play my uke for fun and would not be too upset if it sounded a little different after this project – I probably wouldn’t even notice.
Here’s how I added a personal touch to my already adorable ukulele! All it took was a uke & a paint pen. Well, that and a pencil.
First I thought about what I wanted to add to it. I knew I wanted to decorate around the sound hole, so I thought long and hard about what it would look like. Lately, although it’s the dead of winter, I’ve been in a spring kind of mood. (Maybe it has something to do with our January catalog theme of girls on bikes. Yeah, that’s probably it.) I decided to draw some tiny flowers all around the sound hole. I did this first with a pencil, to make sure I liked how it looked.
Once I was satisfied, I got to work with my little white paint pen! It was a little tricky to get underneath the strings, but luckily my paint pen just so happened to be the same color as the strings… :)
“Do I like it? Yeah, I like it. Actually, it needs something.” …and then I added a little extra to the headstock.
(Side note: I absolutely just Googled “parts of a ukulele” – otherwise I can guarantee I would have said “hole” for “sound hole” and “top” for “headstock.”)
I’m so happy with how it turned out! I’m actually thinking I might want to continue the design all along the white border. What do you guys think? Have you ever decorated a string instrument? Do tell!