You’ve probably seen rusty old skeleton keys turn up at quite a few vintage-themed weddings. Given their symbolism and their beautifully ornate look, with the tops, or bows, featuring Gothic trefoils, quatrefoils, and other intriguing shapes, they’re an unsurprisingly popular wedding décor item. Today, our crafty girl, Polly Conway, has given these antique icons a modern makeover using acrylic paint and washi tape for a fun, updated twist on the trend. Here’s Polly with all the colorful details.

Keys! They’re a classic, symbolic piece of wedding décor. I wanted to create a modern, versatile take on the skeleton key by combining two of my favorite trends: washi tape and neon. These bold keys can adorn favors, hang from floral arrangements, or be used as color-coded escort cards. Read on for this super-simple how-to!

Supplies needed:

1. Vintage-style keys (I used these inexpensive replicas meant for scrapbooking!)

2. Acrylic paint in chosen colors

3. Paintbrush

4. Washi tape

5. Scissors

6. Kraft paper tags

7. Baker’s twine

8. Optional: letter/number stamps

Step 1: Decide which parts of the keys you’d like to paint. Paint a thin layer on each and let dry for 10-15 minutes. Repeat until the color you want is achieved. One or two layers will create a distressed look, while three or four will give a more uniform color. (Waiting for the paint to dry is by far the hardest part of this project.)

Step 2: Wrap a length of washi tape around the body of the key, sticking it together to create a little flag. Tear ends of tape, or use scissors to snip simple designs.

Step 3: Almost done! The painted and taped keys already look great as is, but depending on your needs, you can add more detail by attaching them to kraft paper tags with baker’s twine or stamping words directly onto the washi tape tags.