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Wood Stain Stencil Sign

21 May 2013

When I finally got around to decorating a lonely empty wall in our living room, I knew I wanted a big wood-tone statement piece to balance out the printer’s tray I wanted to use.

Living Room Wall

I decided on a twist on this common sign seen on pinterest. I love the double statement about believing there is good in the world and being that good. I definitely tend to want things to happen without actually doing anything about it, so this is a great reminder for me too :)

Believe there is good wood stain plywood sign

To make the sign, I got the following supplies from home depot (and I have most of each of the wood stain/paint supplies left over for future projects, yay!):

  • 4×8 sheet of 1/4″ birch plywood: $
  • wood conditioner:
  • dark stain (color): $
  • light stain (golden walnut): $
  • test pot of white paint: $

I started by having Eddie help me cut the board down to 3′ x4′, and used the wood stain conditioner on the entire front of the plywood piece. I then stained the entire piece with the light stain. I cut out the letters I wanted to be the light wood color with my cricut, and made a grid using a ruler and masking tape for aligning the stenciled letters.

Wood Stain Stencil

Once the letter stencils were applied (and the masking tape removed), I stained over the entire board with the dark stain, being careful to not let the stain get too thick around the edges of the letters. I had tried several techniques on my scrap piece of plywood for staining around the vinyl letter stencils: with/without conditioner (conditioner definitely helped), mod podge or wood glue to reduce bleeding (affected the stain in a not-good way), and more, but always got minor bleeding. The stenciled letters weren’t perfect, but they turned out pretty well (small imperfections add character and a hand-made touch, right?).

Wood Stain Stencil

I then cut the rest of the letters out with my cricut on normal computer paper, and traced their outlines with a pencil. I painted them in with the white paint, but thought it was a bit too crisp. I ended up going over that area with the dark stain again. If I did this project again, I’d paint the white letters before doing the dark stain.

Believe there is good wood stain plywood sign

To finish it off, I painted the edges of the plywood with some black acrylic paint. I couldn’t nail any picture hangers to the back because it was only 1/4″ thick, so I used gorilla super glue (it says it bonds to wood and metal) to attach some saw-tooth picture hangers to the back (its been on the wall for about a month now with no problems!).

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. 10 September 2013 2:34 PM

    I love the two-tone effect of this. I’m working on something similar and wondered how you ended up sticking the stencils to the board. I’m considering using contact paper or spray adhesive. Did you then wipe the stain over the board with a rag or use a brush? Thanks for any tips!!

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