I recently made a Christmas Trees For Sale Sign and I love the way it turned out. That got me thinking that I would like to make a new Bless the Food Before Us sign for my kitchen to take the place of my Piano Front. Earlier in the week I chatted with my friend Tanya of My Funky Farmhouse about designing me a large sign. Yeah, I could type something up and cut it on my Portrait, but Tanya’s designs are so pretty!
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Okay, now how I made my sign.
How to make reclaimed wood sign
I still have quite a bit of this free weathered fence stored in a wood shed, so I grabbed a few dog eared fence boards to cut for my new sign. The piano front is a whopping 58” long, so I asked Tanya to make the design 48 x 22. That would mean I could use four 4 ft boards as the sign.
Cut weathered fence boards 4 ft long
Attach small brace boards
I used these Simpson 1 1/4” wood screws to assemble my sign. I rarely use drywall screws anymore.
In this photo, you can see how I assembled my rustic sign using four 48” fence boards and two ripped pieces of fencing as brackets. Because my rustic fence has the original screw holes, I sort of worked it where they wouldn’t be “stacked” on top of one another when the boards were flipped over.
Frame Wooden Sign
Because I’ve made a lot of wedding signs for my Etsy Store, I had lots of stakes. I used two long ones and two short stakes to make a frame for my new rustic sign. Instead of doing butt cuts, I mitered the pieces on my compound miter saw.
Paint Bless The Food Before Us Sign
I did a quick coat of Beluga (Behr Satin) with a cheap chip brush. I LOVE using the brushes over and over again. The more they’re used, the better they are. Why do I love them so much? Because cleanup is a breeze and I don’t waste a lot of paint when I clean them.
Do you have any of these handy paint pyramids? They are really good for quick paint jobs. I always paint the back of my pieces first, that way if there is a mishap, it won’t be noticeable on the front.
Here is the sign and the pieces of the frame all dressed up in a fresh coat of black paint.
Dry Brush Red Over Black
Because the piano front was a glazed red, I really knew I wanted this sign to have red tones to take it’s place. I used Heirloom Traditions Peppery to dry brush over the black frame pieces.
uh oh! I forgot to take pictures while I was adding a coat of white to the boards.
Apply Contact Paper Stencils
I cut out a contact paper stencil with my Silhouette Portrait. After spending a couple of hours putting the stencil on and weeding out the letters, I wasn’t happy.
Working with a large stencil can be challenging. The stencil was not cooperating with me on the rustic sign. I was trying to be oh so careful, but it just wasn’t right.
I ripped it all off, so I could do a new stencil on my Silhouette CAMEO making it in two sections instead of the four I made on my Portrait. The problem I experienced on my pieces cut with the Portrait were definitely operator error. I always put “boxes” around my text, but didn’t put them close enough to the letters. I had to trim them to get them placed on the sign. Just talking about it stresses me out because I worked so hard on it. I could have left all of this information out (as though it never happened) but I want you to know that as much as I do this stuff, it’s still not perfect 100% of the time.
After downloading the design from Tanya, I did have to use the TRACE function in order to get the letters to cut. You can see in this snapshot that I have the box very close to the letters. DID YOU KNOW? That when you put such a long, long piece of vinyl or contact paper in your machine, it MUST be cut perfectly straight and fed in with extreme caution. A four foot piece of media can get very askew if it’s not fed in properly. (voice of experience, but this job was flawless)
So, here on the sign I have two pieces of contact paper stencil. I will tell you in all honesty I had a tough time getting this contact paper stencil onto the sign. I don’t use my CAMEO very often and I actually had the blade set a little too deep. When I do my Etsy signs on my Portrait, I literally pull the entire stencil off the backing and then weed it when it’s on the board. For this project I ended up using some transfer paper for the stencil. (not shown)
Stencil with foam pouncers
I used the Peppery and a foam pouncer to complete the stencil.
I think less is more when it comes to stenciling these rustic fence boards. Because I’m impatient I used the hairdryer with a diffuser to help speed up the drying process.
This is the plan—to apply Heirloom Traditions Black wax with a sponge right over the stenciled letters. Remember I like glazed red the best.
I dabbed on the wax, over all of the letters, then used the small sponge to sort of spread the wax around when I was done. The black wax definitely gave more definition to the red paint.
When I removed the stencil, I was in love with the way the letters looked! UNTIL, I realized that I should have left less space between line #2 and line #3.
It is what it is, and it was so late!
Here’s the sign before I added the frame. Maybe you like it like this?
Attach painted frame to reclaimed wood sign
I attached the frame pieces with my Ryobi Air Strike.
Install d’rings for hanging
I use these d rings for all of my hanging projects.
It’s difficult to tell, but the frame isn’t “dark” enough to suit me. It looks a little too Mauve for me.
Enhance color of frame with dark wax
I applied some black wax with the small sponge all around the frame to darken it, and I’m so glad I did. I love the new, darker look.
This sort of gives you a better idea of how large it is.
My new sign in the kitchen! It was a lot of work, but I love how it looks. It’s not perfect, but it’s handmade by little ole me!
Be sure to visit Tanya, and check out her Facebook Page.
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