While looking for a quick and easy Fall project, I decided to make a large rustic Thankful sign for the porch. It's a great way to remind us of the gratitude we should have all year long.
I had the perfect weathered (gray) lumber left over from cleaning up the woodshed. I’ve had several boards laying out in the sun in order to remove debris and filth. They’ve been out there all Summer, and now it was time to grab one for this awesome vertical Thankful sign.
Trim board to size
Because the board was very long, I enlisted the aid of my jaw stand while cutting the board on my miter saw. Although this 2x10 was cut to about 56 inches, it really is much lighter than I thought it would be. I suppose it’s because its so weathered.
Give reclaimed board a dash of color
Originally the rustic board had red undertones, but those disappeared over the hot summer months. I used a cheap chip brush and some red paint to give the sign a faint hint of red. Another way to do this is to dilute the latex paint with water. If you accidentally apply too much red paint, simply hose it off before it completely dries. You could even wet the board down before you paint it if you have the time to let it dry. I did not have the luxury of time.
Since it didn’t matter about the color, I used the same brush to apply some black paint throughout the red area. The long board is resting on my easy diy sawhorses.
Design Stencil for Thankful Sign
I used the font FontleroyBrown (539) for WE ARE, and Clarendon Blk BT (450) for the word THANKFUL. The design was 9x56. You can see that the material is set for Contact Paper. I always use contact paper for my single use stencils on my Silhouette Portrait. You could use a word program and print the letters on your home printer.
Using contact paper in a Silhouette Portrait
This project is great for beginners. But, it’s very important to make sure that when you feed such a long piece of contact paper (or vinyl) into your machine that you have a very straight edge. If the roll feeds in crooked, the contact paper stencil will continue to get more crooked as it continues to travel through the rollers.
NOTE: I have the Silhouette portrait resting on the floor to allow it to feed the entire 56” of material through the machine.
Weed contact paper stencil
This hook tool is so handy in weeding out the contact paper stencil. There were only a few oodles and boodles that were left behind after weeding out the positive part of the stencil.
Apply Contact paper stencil to reclaimed board
I started from the bottom and slid the contact paper backing upwards revealing each letter.
Continuing to weigh the stencil down, I keep pulling the backing paper away.
Paint letters using stencil
The backing paper is very useful as you continue to stencil down the board. I prefer to use Martha Stewart Foam Pouncers for my stenciling projects.
Smooth stencil on rough board
Laying the slick backing paper over the stencil, I use the paint lid to “burnish” the stencil onto the rough reclaimed lumber. This prevents the dreaded splinter incidents.
Foam pouncers-perfect for stenciling
The lumber is very rough. Use caution if you are doing a reclaimed lumber sign. The pouncer needs to be held at a slight angle around any part of the stencil that may have a tendency to lift away. If you hold the stencil flat down with too much paint applied, some areas may become attached to the pouncer.
By working my way down the rustic sign, I was able to make sure every couple of letters were securely adhered to the reclaimed board.
Remove stencil, oodles and boodles
Some of the contact paper broke as I was peeling the stencil away. I removed those pieces and the oodles and boodles in the A’s and E’s.
Fall decor with large Thankful sign
This large thankful sign was an awesome, fun and easy afternoon project. I love decorating for Fall! You can use it outside on your porch, or even in your entryway. It's a great way to use up a reclaimed board and paint for your fall home decor.
I think you'll also love this Always Something to be Thankful For sign made with reclaimed fence boards.
What are you Thankful for?