I had the wonderful opportunity to try out the new Americana Decor Chalky Finish paint, available online at Home Depot. You can have it shipped to your home, or to your local Home Depot for free pick-up! This product is perfect for creating distressed signs, which is what I am sharing with you today. I am most impressed by the huge color palette, the high quality of the paint, the ease of distressing and the variety of mediums and finishing options. There are so many things I plan to do with this stuff, but for now…
The technique is the same as this rustic sign DIY from guest artist Pam of The Little Red Porch, using the chalky finish paint. I also added a video illustrating how to use Photoshop to print sections of your sign for taping together and transferring onto the wood. We had several questions on that part in the first post, so hopefully things will be clearer, at least for those of you who use Photoshop.
Begin with a piece of scrap wood in the size you want your sign. I have tons of the stuff lying around here. The 2 signs I am using for this tutorial are on very different wood. The Proverbs verse is on rough MDF, and the other is on smooth ply wood. Both have their place, depending on the look you are trying to achieve. I prefer the smoother, I discovered.
My cheap foam brush worked great for the background. I used the chalky finish paint in “Primitive” for my background. Great coverage, especially on this chippy, rough surface! While that is drying…
Create your text using your favorite software. Print your artwork in sections if your sign is larger than your printer will print. Here is how to do that with Photoshop:
Tape image sections together. You may need to cut off any border your printer added where the sections meet.
Place transfer paper between text and wood and trace letters with stylus or pen.
Once your text is transferred, fill it in with your color of choice. I used Carbon for the black, Everlasting for the white, and a mixture of Romance and Innocence for the pink color.
Just use a small round paintbrush. I like to use watercolor brushes for hand lettering with paint. I wet them first and it seems to help the flow. Play around until you figure out what works best for you.
Once you are happy with your lettering, you may want to sand distress the piece, and frame your sign like we showed you in Pam’s DIY sign tutorial previously.
I applied clear wax and let that dry for about one hour.
I applied the dark brown creme wax over the top of the clear creme wax, with a lint free cloth. Wipe back to remove excess, working in a few inch sections at a time. If you find you have overdone it with the dark and can’t wipe away enough, you can use the clear wax to pull it up. Just dip a clean cloth in the clear and wipe the area that is too dark.
For the “Awesome” sign, I cut the text out and made a stencil with my Cricut. Also, I painted it on smooth ply sheets. I used the soft varnish finish instead of wax, and it is velvety fabulousness.
I heart it so much I want to make a thousand more.