When I saw this Guinness ad campaign, I knew I had to try a D.I.Y. version because, well, look at it:
Cool, right? The campaign originally ran in Romania as a low-budget way to promote Guinness during Halloween. It was a success.
I decided to copy the ghost coaster (without fingers, as the material I used, cork roll, isn’t suited for detailed cuts), and then design one or two coasters of my own.
The New Designs
I drew the templates for each design on printer paper, building upon the outline of a wine glass base. I struggled with the bat coaster design, at first trying out a fat Batman logo-type bat. But a) it looked weird, and b) the wings were too separated from the coaster base. Then I found this bat placemat tutorial. It’s the perfect shape, and she even includes a template (which I didn’t use, but probably should have).
The other design, the hairy toad, came about because I wanted to use angry eyeballs on one of the coasters. I didn’t have a finished template, and made half my design decisions while cutting it out of the cork. I’m calling it a hairy toad coaster, but I also think it looks like a soot sprite.
Make Your Own
Materials & Steps
What I used:
- cork roll
- black & white acrylic paint
- a foam brush & a paint brush
- an X-Acto knife & a cutting pad
- printer or other firm paper for the coaster template
Cut the cork roll into tiles, and paint the tiles with black acrylic paint using the foam brush. Once dried, cut out coaster shapes from the cork using the printer paper templates, X-Acto knife, and cutting pad. Retouch coasters with black paint as needed; paint eyes onto the hairy toad coasters with a paint brush.
Make It Better
Because this was an experiment, I used materials I had on hand, i.e., cork roll. But the cork roll wasn’t great. One, I could not get the curl out of it, despite days of flattening the cork under heavy books. Two, cork roll isn’t suited for detailed cutting. It crumbles far too much. Finally, I didn’t love how the acrylic paint looked on the cork. The shiny-looking patches you see in the photos aren’t as noticeable in real life, but the whole thing looks unpolished.
If I were to do it again, here’s what I’d try:
- use black PVC instead of cork roll or
- use thicker cork tiles instead of cork roll
- create & use an eye stencil for the hairy toads
- create coasters using a laser cutter
Any or all of these tweaks could lead to cleaner cuts and sturdier & more professional-looking construction. At least I think so, what do you think?