Wednesday, June 5, 2013

DIY July 4th decorations: Personalized wood sign

NEW: Now on sale and fully customizable! Scroll down for details. 

I don't usually decorate for July 4th, but this summer I want to put some USA pride on my mantel.  I thought and thought and came up with this cute DIY wood sign that I think will be the perfect start to my July 4th decorations.

So here's what you'll need
  • Piece of wood (mine is about 13.5" x 3") but you can make it any size you wish
  • Primer 
  • White and blue (or red) acrylic paint
  • Sand paper and/or sander
  • Painters tape
  • Wax Paper
  • Card Stock
  • Spray adhesive
  • Computer/Printer
  • Credit Card
Get a piece of wood -- could be a plank from a pallet, could be a 2 x 4 could be a piece you find in the back of your basement (this would be the case at my house!)

Sand it down and prime it.

Use white paint (I had white acrylic paint on hand, so I used that) to paint the front and all the edges.

When the paint is dry, use painters tape to tape off the entire front except a small border around the edge.

Paint the border blue or red or whatever color strikes your fancy.

Ignore that print out in the top right corner, that's me experimenting on paper first...
Sand the entire board to distress it (optional). 

Now, get on your computer and create your text. I turned to my trusty PowerPoint (I warned you I use the program for the weirdest stuff).  My text fits the entire slide edge to edge.


Save the slide as a jpg picture.

Use an online program such as ConvertHub to flip your image. Save the image to your computer and load it back into Powerpoint (just create a new slide and add the reverse image as a picture).



Spray an 8x11 piece of cardstock with spray adhesive and lay a piece of wax paper, cut to size, on top.  Make sure to get out all the creases and bubbles.  Work on a protected surface to protect against overspray.

Put the cardstock/wax paper sheet into your printer.  Be sure that you have the paper oriented so the image will print on the wax paper.

Print the reversed image onto the wax paper.

Cut off the excess paper so you're only working with the text.

Use a damp rag to lightly wet your board where you will put the text.

Flip over your wax paper image directly onto the board.  Try not to move it around.

Use a credit card to press the image down making sure to go over the entire area.

Carefully lift the cardstock/wax paper sheet up and your image is transferred.

If you want, you can seal it with polyurethane to protect your work. This will also slightly darken the transfer. 

This wax paper transfer method also works for transferring ink to fabric - I did this same method here and the results were awesome!

If you'd rather have the traditional "Land of the Free, Home of the Brave" I have created a free July 4th printable for you to use for your wood sign.  You can download and print it out here.
As always, thanks for stopping by 2IY.  If you like what you see we'd love you to share it with the world through a pin, a "like" or a big shout out!

The July 4th Wood Signs are now on sale through my Etsy Shop.  They are fully customizable.  All 2IY readers are eligible for a special promotional price $10 off when using the coupon code 2IY2OF.  Orders must be submitted by July 4, 2013 to be eligible for the discount.  Order here.

Posted by: Melissa