Thursday, September 23, 2010

DIY - Small wooden signs

Recently at the Plymouth Blueberry Festival, I found so many neat craft ideas. I really like small wooden signs with cute words or phrases. Because they are small pieces of wood with some paint on them, it seemed a little silly to pay $3-$7+ for them when I could make them myself for a fraction of the cost!
I found this piece of wood at Lowes for $1.80. It was 1" by 2" & 6' long.

After you have your wood and your hand saw, decide how long of a piece you will need for your word or phrase. To do this, it is best to print off similar sized words or phrases onto plain computer paper and use that to determine the length of wood you will need.  I used pieces that were 3.5-5 inches.

It doesn't matter if your cut is perfect. I had to cut slowly and only in one direction to keep it from splintering a lot on the ends.

Next, take a piece of fine sand paper and sand the small piece of wood, wiping the dust off with a slightly  damp microfiber cloth. Now you are ready to paint it.

I found my paints at Jo-Ann Fabrics for about .89 cents each. Any brand of craft paint (or even spray paint or a quart of paint) will work. Priming is optional, but probably not necessary. I did not prime my pieces before painting them. 

Next, paint your wooden blocks. I gave my blocks two to three coats. Use more or less as needed. I used small foam brushes and they worked very well for me.

I chose to use computer font on my blocks because I do not have a steady hand for painting tiny words. I found that I had a few pieces of color coordinating scrapbook card stock that would coordinate with the colors of paint I was using. I used a printer to print the word onto the card stock and cut it to fit the front of my blocks.

Using Mod Podge, cover the "front" of your block with a thin layer.

Carefully place the card stock on the front of your block, using the Mod Podge as glue.

Use a card to smooth the piece of card stock onto the wooden block.

Then paint Mod Podge over the front of the block. If you are using paper with computer ink on it, be careful to only brush over the ink a few times for your first coat of Mod Podge or the ink may smear. After your first coat is dry, the Mod Podge will project that from happening as you do additional coats on the front and all over the block. Painting and Mod Podging are the lengthiest part of this craft, so make sure you find something fun to do while they dry. I did 2-4 coats of Mod Podge. I used Matte finish Mod Podge but Satin or Gloss would work just as well.

I made a total of three Autumn word signs:
"Pumpkins - 5 Cents"

"Autumn Blessings"
And "Harvest Moon".

Time to have fun playing around with various tablescapes! :)

Total Project Cost:
Wood: $1.80
Paint: $2.70
Card Stock: $.60
= $5.10 for three signs.
Plus, I have another 5 feet of wood to make more!

 This is just me.... enjoying the simple things!


  1. Love, love, love them!!!! Very frugal too. Such cute little sayings. And I really like your mantel display. Did you put a glass plate on top of an upside down glass bowl for your pedestal tray? Love it!! They are so cute...I hope that next week I can work on my little wood projects. You are very clever!!

  2. i love them, lindsey! thanks for i want to make some, too! :)

  3. ooh.....i want to make a bunch too!!! can we have a wood block making party some day? then we can entertain ourselves whilst the modge podge drieth?!?

  4. These are cute and simple. And no vinyl required! yay! I'm your newest follower. I'd love for you to follow back!