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DIY Holiday Sign~Reindeer List

I have been seeing these adorable signs on pinterest the last couple of years and finally made it a priority to make one of my own.  

This Hand Painted Home available on Etsy was inspiration for a DIY version with CeCe's  Reindeer sign for Christmas by Heather Paper Crafts on Etsy was inspiration for a DIY  Reindeer sign found on city farmhouse blog and was inspiration for Vintage Bette's DIY

The one on the left is my favorite and is available from This Hand Painted Home on Etsy.  The middle one is super cute and can be found at Heather Paper Crafts on Etsy.  I always, always love chalkboard so I had to include the one on the right which I found on City Farmhouse Holiday Home Tour.  

I had a piece of backing board from a mirror or some kind of wall hanging.  When I am about to throw something like that away I often pull it apart and keep the parts for future projects.  It is great because I always have it around when inspiration strikes and if it is fantastic and worth spending more $$ and time on it I just go get something better and make it again.  The first try is always the worst one anyway!

I gave it a coat of CeCe Caldwell's Chalk + Clay Paint in Vintage White then topped it with a coat of Dover White Wash to make it look a little more rustic.  

vintage white and dover white wash by cece's paints make a great background for signs

I wanted to try one of the methods I have recently found on Pinterest for transferring letters to various surfaces for making signs so for this project I tried the simple pencil lead transfer method--yes that is totally a technical name for it--at least here at Vintage Bette it is!

So I used Pages to print out the words I wanted in the font I wanted.  I then shaded in over the words on the back of the paper with a pencil so it looked like this photo.  

pencil lead transfer method for making hand painted signs with cece's paints from vintage bette          pencil lead transfer method for making hand painted signs by vintage bette

 

After ensuring the words were all 'covered' from the back I then placed the words 'right side up' onto my painted board and taped them down where I wanted them.  I used a T-square and measured a lot to ensure I had them evenly spaced and straight.  I then simply traced over the outside of the words on the print out.  I used the same pencil (after sharpening it again) I used for shading the back.  When I pulled off the print outs this is what was on my painted board!
pencil lead transfer method for making hand painted signs with vintage bette and ceces
Next I gathered my paint and some very small artist's brushes from the craft store.  I used Vermont Slate and Jersey Tomato for the reindeer names but if you purchase one of these awesome Holiday Sampler collections of CeCe Caldwell's Paints Samples by Vintage Bette you could use the Beckley Coal and Jersey Tomato.  
I then painted over the letters until it looked like this...
rudolph and reindeer name list from vintage bette
Reindeer list with cece caldwells chalk + Clay paints from vintage bette
After allowing it to dry overnight I took some 220 grit sandpaper and sanded over the whole surface lightly to get any globs of paint off and to make it nice and smooth.  
Then I hit it with some clear, matte spray finish from the hardwares store to protect my painting.
To make the frame I cut some 1 x 1 wood and stained it with Beech Nut Gray Stain & Finish by CeCe's Paints and attached it to the front of the board.  Then I decided I didn't like the gray stain as much as I would Vermont Slate and I painted over it Vermont Slate.
 
**This is NOT the 'proper' way to make a frame but I wanted simple and rustic and I really really didn't feel like mitering the corners and making pocket holes.  I wanted just about anyone to feel like they could make this project.  You could even make this project without making your own frame by buying a pre-made background from a craft store or buying a pre-made wooden frame and adding just the backing.  I like this project because you can honestly make it whatever level of DIY you are comfortable with!

 

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