Friday, February 26, 2010

Vintage Sign

I love so many of the wooden vintage-inspired signs I've seen on blogs and in stores lately. Susie Harris is an incredibly talented artist and I have fell in love with her creations over and over:

And so as we settled in for yet another night of snow here in PA, I decided to give my own vintage-inspired sign a try. 


Left over white paint from painting trim in the house.
Brown and black acrylic craft paint.

We received this sign a few years ago. It was perfect in a little bar area in the basement, but now that the bar is defunct I decided to repurpose it. I flipped it over and had an unpainted, rough surface.

I sanded and sanded, and then painted 2-3 layers of white paint. Then I mixed the brown acrylic paint with some water and using a foam brush "stained" the sign a bit so that it wasn't such a bright white. I let it dry for about an hour and then began the lettering process.

I printed the lettering in a font I liked and printed it out. Then I traced the letters on the front and back of blank printer paper. Then I traced the letters onto the wood. The lead from the tracings on the back transferred the letters onto the wood.

Then I began painting the letters using a fine point brush and the black acrylic paint. I did 2 layers. Then I went over the letters with the brown acrylic paint. I did one layer of brown to soften the black.

Then once dry I began to age the sign. I wish I could give details on how I did that, but I sort of just made it up as I went. I think my old scrapbooking skills came out. I was very into distressing paper crafts back in the day. I just used the brown paint and a napkin to distress the edges and some of the surface. I even scratched off some of the paint and let the wood show through in some places.

And here is what I ended up with!

I chose "La Vita e Bella" (Life is Beautiful in Italian) because it was the first movie date my hubby and I had so many years ago. And because my husband's family is Italian. It's just a special phrase for us. A nice reminder that life is precious and indeed quite beautiful.

Now I just have to figure out where to put my vintage sign! I keep moving it around the house trying to find it's spot.

What would you want on a sign in your home? Your last name? A special phrase?

This post is part of the Before and After Party at Thrifty Decor Chick, Make Your Monday at Twice Remembered and Transformation Thursday at Shabby Chic Cottage.


The Cozy Chateau said...

Great job on the sign. I've been wanting to make one as well (I've also been inspired by all the signs I've been seeing on blogs, etc) - and I love that you did it without a cricut.

Anonymous said...

I love that!

Victoria said...

Wowsers, you did awesome! As for what I like on a sign, anything written in French!!!

jennifer a said...

I love how your sign turned out! And the saying is so sweet. I love that it has sentimental value. Looks great!

AM from White House, Black Shutters said...

Great job on your sign, I love the sentimental value of it as well! But HOW ON EARTH DID YOU SIT THROUGH THAT MOVIE ON YOUR FIRST MOVIE DATE?!?! Oh my gosh, love that movie, but every time I watch it I bawl like a baby. Kudos to you for being such a strong woman! ;)

Anywho, commenting on your blog because I wanted to let you know that I finally found the glass canisters from my distressed hutch that you commented on way back when. I just made a post about it (with the link) here:

-Ann Marie

EnchantedBella said...

I love your signs. I will have to try to make one myself. Thanks


Ginger@cottageonrosewood said...

Great job on the sign. Yours is definitely better now. Stopping by from The Shabby Chic Cottage.

French Country Furniture said...

That is just awesome! I am going to make a vintage sign for my laundry and bathroom doors...can't wait to start now I have seen yours!

Room to Inspire said...

I am with you, I really enjoy the look of "vintage" signs. I am thinking I would like to create one for the laundry room. Thanks for the nudge to create one!