Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Pallet Sign {DIY}

Another weekend, another project.

I have wanted to make a pallet sign for over a year now. In my head (and on Pinterest) I have countless sign ideas that I would love to make. The problem was, up until this weekend I have been to scared and intimidated to attempt trying to make one.

Finally I cast my fears aside and went for it.

The first and most difficult part of this process was disassembling the pallet. I pretty much beat and pried the tar out of it. During this process I was fortunate enough to only break one board which left plenty of boards for my sign.

Next I arranged the boards trying to make them nicely fit together. This took some playing around to figure out what pattern worked best. I cut a board in half, placed it across the back, drilled holes and screwed the boards together. I had a little help with the screws. I think he worries I may destroy the screwdriver bit, he is probably right in thinking that. 

I kind of wanted to leave the rough edges but they board was a bit larger than I wanted so we cut 4" from each side. 

With the board at the right size, I was ready to paint. I was going for an off white color but I didn't want it to look like wood that had been painted. I took some acrylic paint and mixed it with water probably at about a 10 to 1 ratio giving me some very watered down paint that was more like a wash. 

I ended up applying about 3 coats of the wash. A couple little girls offered to help with the process. They love to be a part of my projects. 

While the paint was drying I came inside to print out my lettering. I am sure there are SEVERAL different ways you could do this. I chose to go to Canva, type out my lettering, export it as a PDF file and then scale the image size up to what I desired before printing. I was actually surprised at how smoothly this process went. For the larger words I broke them up to about 4 letters for each page allowing me to scale them to the size I wanted.

Next up was the part I have always been nervous about. How in the world am I supposed to successfully paint this on my sign without it looking like a Kindergarten art project.

For years I have been afraid to try, if only I had learned the secret weapon sooner.

Carbon Paper

Simply line the paper up where you want it to go, put a sheet of carbon paper underneath and trace the letters. 

It only took me about 20 minutes to do this whole sign and this is what it looked like when I was done.

All I had to do now was stay inside the lines while painting. Easy enough, right?

Thankfully I had a tiny paint brush that made doing that very easy.

Painting the letters took about an hour. The girls were watching a movie so I stuck some earbuds in and got in "the zone". Not only was it easier than I ever imagined it could be, it was fun to. 

When I finished this was the result.

I decided to let it dry for a day then I lightly took some sandpaper to distress the lettering a bit.


Project cost
Paint $2.00
Carbon paper $1.93 with a 40% off coupon
Total $3.93

I wish I had tried to do this years ago. 

It is now displayed as a part of my gallery wall that is still a work in process.

Obviously it will need to be replaced in about 2 months with something more festive. So it looks like I will have plenty of opportunities to make several more signs over the next year.

Have you been crafty lately?

Are there any projects you want to try but have been afraid to attempt?


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  1. Seriously! I would have never guessed carbon paper!!!!! Such a fun project! Love the way it turned out! Etsy is calling your name girlfriend!!

  2. I love this! It turned out so cute!

  3. It looks awesome!! Genius idea with the carbon paper!

  4. You are seriously awesome at these projects and I love it! Carbon paper - that's awesome! Your sign turned out awesome! You're going to have so much awesome fall DIY decor!

  5. You blow me away, yet again. I don't have access to anything handy, tools and husband included so I'm going to keep this idea tucked away and have my Dad help me with it.

  6. Your crafts are so freaking amazing. I haven't the slightest clue where to find pallets, and even if I did, I have a strong feeling my projects wouldn't be nearly as awesome as yours!

  7. Love this so much!! Great font choices and colors. Where do you find carbon paper?

  8. What a great tutorial!! I have been wanting to try this out. This was so helpful! Stopping by from the linkup:)

  9. Carbon paper - you genius you! Shoot I need lots of that now. My handwriting is terrible. Awful. I love this so hard! Again go ahead and send one my way =) Where the heck do you get pallets from and why do you have 1000 in the yard? Are you a pallet hoarder?

  10. Wow, this is so cute! I love it! I have so many pallet projects I'd like to do, this is definitely going on the list. If you don't have carbon paper, you can use a pencil and go over the backside of the letters then trace them like you normally would. Total saver in a pinch! Can't wait to see what sign you make next!

  11. Look at how crafty you are!!!! This is an awesome sign. Love it.
    Thanks for sharing with What You Wish Wednesday. Please link-up again tomorrow!