Handmade Gifts: Barn Wood Sign

I have a thing for big love letters. In one previous home, I even painted the “I love you” to my Beloved right on the wall in our dining room. We enjoyed the larger-than-life art/note (although the realtor wisely told us to repaint before selling the house!).

This year we have been gradually fixing up our current home, and our bedroom was needing some wall art. As soon as I saw this photo on Pinterest, I knew what my next project would be.

Since we added another doorway in our room (along with the already existing doorway and two large windows) the available wall space was actually limited. But we wanted something pretty, but slightly rustic. (We already have the pallet shelves in there.)

So, I knew a large repurposed pallet or multiple boards would be too large for the space. Instead, I chose one old piece of weathered wood to make the sign.

If you don’t have an old barn out behind your house like we do, look around town for old fencing, or keep an eye out at garage sales and Craigslist for old barn/fence wood.

Make sure your wood is clean and dry before painting, so that the paint will adhere cleanly. I used the “sample-sized” paints from the department store paint section. You don’t need much!

Using some large foam letter stamps (I used scrapbooking ones from a thrift store), or freehand, paint your quote on the sign and let dry.

Depending on your wall surface, use appropriate screws or hanging brackets (just ask at your local hardware store).

It was a much-appreciated, two-in-one gift: a little love note, and a fixed-up bedroom!

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8 comments to Handmade Gifts: Barn Wood Sign

  • Joy

    That is AWESOME! I just bought a wood square thing at ac Moore to make my husband a sign for Christmas it’s going to have his logo and welcome on it so we can put it in the garden in front of our home


  • What a neat idea for some rustic charm.


  • Love how it turned out! I’m doing a similar project but my barn wood has chipping white paint. It’s a great look but I’m not sure how to paint over it. Do you think we should cover it in some kind of lacquer to protect the chipping paint? Thanks!


    Michele Reply:

    You may want to put some kind of sealant over it if the paint is flaking off; especially if it is really old paint.


  • Hi Irene!When you seal your wood canvas with Gesso you have to allow it to dry cellpotemy. I usually do multiple ones that way they are ready to go when I’m ready to paint on them.I usually do at least 2 layers of Gesso on all sides including the back (3 layers is ideal) for longevity.Once the Gesso is dry, then you can sketch on on it.I sketch on Vellum or Tracing paper first so all the erasing and corrections are done on that and not on the wood. Once I’m happy with the drawing then I transfer it using another piece of Velum that I have rubbed cellpotemy with a 4B pencil, you can purchase transfer paper, but I just make it my self.By transferring the drawing, you keep the Gesso clean and then begin to paint.If you do not want to deal with transferring, you can always add a layer of clear coat to the pencil sketch that is on the wood, let it dry and then start painting. The lead will be sealed and will not mix with your colors.I hope that helps.You’ve given me a nice idea for a blog post and I’ll be explaining it using pictures.Take careMaggie


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