You may have seen a similar DIY outdoor Christmas sign recently on Pinterest. I did. But after clicking myself into oblivion and landing 10 websites removed in the middle of advertising pop-up land, I still was not able to find the original source or any information on how this project was made. So I improvised and here’s my method. I hope you can re-create your own unique DIY outdoor Christmas sign using some of this information.
This project started with a visit to the old barn to tear another piece of barn wood off the wall. It needed some trimming on one end but other than that, I pretty much left the wood as is – worm holes and all. This project is great for any scrap wood you might have lying around because the wood doesn’t need to be pretty. I didn’t have any white paint on hand but I had some old white Kilz primer and decided to use that. I brushed it on very haphazardly to get somewhat of a sloppy, weather-beaten look. I used Krylon Color Master afterwards to seal the letters so they wouldn’t smear or fade.
I was curious to try a method I found using Acetone to apply the letters. You print the letters on regular paper but reverse them and then lay the paper on the board face down where you want the letters to go. Pour acetone on the paper and rub the back of the paper with a spoon, knife, or any tool that will put enough pressure on the paper so that the letters rub off onto the wood. It works ok but the print comes out very faded. This would be good if you wanted a very light image or were just trying to get a basic outline of your image but most likely you would have to go over the image with some other medium to darken it. Here was my attempt using acetone. I didn’t make the letters large enough and needed to space them farther apart so I started over.
I covered up the letters with more primer and began again. This time I printed the letters and just cut them out. They were large letters and I could reuse the “E” so it wasn’t a lot of work. Then I traced around the letters. You can lay them out and eye ball where you want to place them. I did no measuring whatsoever. This was quick, easy and no mess!
I used this paint marker I got at Walmart. I bought two but only used one of them for this sign. It goes a long way.
Then I colored in the letters with the paint marker. Because the wood was so rough I filled in what I could and didn’t worry about distressing the letters for a weathered look since the rough wood already lent itself to that.
I’m not sure how the paint marker wears so as I mentioned, I gave it a couple of sprays with the Krylon spray which is an acrylic top coating. Here’s a close-up after the Krylon was applied.
The font I used was CENTURY but obviously you can choose any font you like. Because I had the wood and primer, the total cost of the project for me was about $5 for the paint marker and Krylone spray. Here’s a couple pictures of the finished sign on display on the front porch. This is an easy DIY project for some quick outdoor Christmas decor!