January 4, 2015

Easy DIY inspirational sign

"She believed she could so she did"

I came up with this idea while walking through Dollar Tree one day.  I found these, oh so cute wall stickers, grabbed a couple and got to thinking.  It would be super easy to make one of those adorable inspirational signs you see everywhere. You know, the ones that are going for $10-$20.  Well, I'm going to show you how you can make one for less than $5, no artistic skills required.  Both the stickers and the sponge brushes can be found at Dollar Tree, Mod Podge at any craft store and the scrap piece of wood, any man's garage ;)

So, let's get started!

I love going to Home Depot or Lowes and screening the "oops" paint section.  There are always sample size containers of a mix of colors.  They best part, they're usually only $1.  See pretty blue color above, Lowes special.  I have a bunch of these little guys lying around and they last me quite a while.  The scrap piece of wood was a remnant from one of my grandfathers endless projects.  And the package of different size sponge brushes can be found at the Dollar Tree, along with the sticker of your choice.  

Use the sponge brush to paint a thin layer of paint on all sides of the sign.  Remember, you are going for a distressed look, so don't be too perfect.  This is also one of the reasons I love using a sponge brush.  It leaves a nice amount of paint and naturally goes on un even.  Bonus, the brushes are easier to get paint in the little nooks and crannies of any project your working on.  You want to make sure you are leaving clean strokes.  Starting at one side, and ending at the other, following the grain of wood.  This will leave a nice smooth surface.    

Once the paint has dried (I usually leave it for 24 hours) use your sandpaper to distress the wood.  I choose to go heavier on the corners and the edges of the wood (see above) Make sure to round off the corners and smoothing out any potential splinters.  Then lightly sand the top of the sign, leaving a smooth surface for the sticker to adhere to.  

Apply sticker and use the Mod Podge to seal it.  I use a sponge brush for this too.  I usually cover the whole top surface of the sign with the Mod Podge to make sure it stays.  Make sure not to apply it too heavy and apply evenly, or you won't be able to see what's underneath it.  Once that has dried, I used a stain and lightly apply it to the exposed areas of the wood around the sign.  Then I wiped it off leaving behind a nice distressed look.  Once all of that has dried (another 24 hours) I spray on a clear acrylic sealer.  You can use a gloss or matte finish sealer, depending on the look you are going for.  I personally like the matte finish.  I used twine and upholstery tacks to hang the sign. (sorry, forgot to take a picture)
And, that's it, easy peasy!

It's ok to step back and admire your work, go ahead, no one's judging. ;)

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Happy Creating!!! ~Amanda  

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