Merry Little Christmas Sign

I love making crafts that are simple and can be done fairly quickly.

I came across a sign i loved on Pinterest, but my relationship with Pinterest is not always a good one. I’ve tried numerous things that just wind up overwhelming because either something was left out of the steps, or it looked a lot easier then it actually was.

I figured I’d give it a try and with imperfections and all, i really love the outcome!

These steps can be done for any sign you’d like to create from scratch. Here are are steps;

I was able to get a thin piece of plywood from a box at work. It is about 2′ x 3′ which was just the right size I wanted. I lightly sanded the sides of the plywood because it was splintering all over.

Next, I took some white acrylic paint I had on hand and just lightly coated the board.

Then I added some text from my “Phonto” app on my phone, and then sent them to my computer to print and printed and taped them where I wanted then on the board.20151214_104411

After that, since I didn’t have any carbon paper, I added led to the back of the printouts, and then traced over then to transfer the lettering onto my board how I wanted it.

 

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The tracing takes a little bit of time, bit it’s worth it to get the font you want looking nice and neat.

My issue is, with the next step, which was using the black & red acrylic paint, I didn’t have a small square tip paint brush on hand, so I used a small rounded make-up brush I had laying around (yes I did). It worked great except it was hard to square my letters like I wanted and they came out a bit rounded and no longer perfect. I figured it was OK because I’d be sanding it next to give it a vintage/rustic look.20151215_112402

 

^ This was before sanding and you can see how my painting didn’t go so well.

To sand this, you can do it by hand with sandpaper but I had a small orbital sander on hand and used a 60 grit paper on it. I did a little deeper sanding in some areas and lighter in others to give it the look I wanted. You can see where it’s just about down to the plywood. It also allowed me to make my letters look a little better and the imperfections to almost disappear.

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The last step I did was add a light gray stain. I used “classic gray” from Minwax, it’s only $4.50 for a tiny jar that’ll last forever for craft projects.

I almost want to say I could’ve done without this step. I feel like I looked the white a bit brighter and I might sand it down a little to take some of the stain off, but I’m torn. I do like the way it turned it more rustic looking and I don’t have to work about it getting dirty since I’m using it as a holiday decoration on my front porch.

Let me know what you think and if you wind up trying this project!

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3D Valentine Tutorial – ONLY $7 for 30!

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This adorable 3D Valentines card that I made for my sons 1st grade class this year is super easy and best of all, CHEAP!

Here is a quick step by step;

I took a few pictures with my son holding his hand out as if he were holding something invisible and selected the one I felt best fit his personality. I didn’t want him to just be smiling, I wanted it to be as he would if he were handing someone a lollipop in real life to get the real 3D effect. This is the one I chose;

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I don’t have an Iphone with the fancy text app’s, and I didn’t have any special apps on my android, so I decided the easiest way for me to edit and add fun text to the picture is to use the Paint program on windows. I had to download the fonts that I wanted onto my computer via dafont.com and there were so many cute ones to choose from. I selected some of the Valentines ones and also used one called “Kindergarten” for his name. I then opened my Adobe Photoshop light app that came with my Windows 8, and I edited the colors to my liking. Here is how it came out;

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Lastly, I had to get the photo’s printed, and due to it being right up the street, I chose Walgreens. Unfortunately, even with my attention to detail when cropping according to their ‘4×6’ picture specs, they still winded up printing it to less then expected standards in color, including chopping the bottom portion of his name off… In the sheet that shows how it should look from their printing sheet, it shows correct. Not sure what happened, but I am not too thrilled with this so I need to go back and have them fix this.  All in all, through Retailmenot.com , I was able to get 40% off picture orders and I got 30 of them for just $5.22 with tax and in-store pick up!

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All that’s left to do is add the lolipops (I used tootsie pops due to the size of the stick and pop giving the effect I wanted, but you can buy a while back of cheap ones at the dollar store to save even more money!). I had a box cutter that made it easy for me to get precise cuts.

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Then just add the lollipop and that’s it! You’re done!

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I plan on adding a sheet of card stock behind these so they aren’t as flimsy since the lollipops are a little heavy, but it isn’t needed.

Did I mention I made all 30 of these for just $7??!!!