With more people working from home and taking “staycations” our homes our are receiving a little extra TLC! A fresh coat of paint, new throw pillows, updated patio furniture.
Our family is treating our porch like an bonus “room”. We spend hours playing games, reading or simply just connecting with neighbors and passers by from a safe distance! Want to see how I refreshed up our family porch this past spring? Please visit my blog post Porch Refresh.
With increased time spent on the porch, it seems only right we want to make it as inviting as possible. Why not create a stunning porch sign or porch leaner as they are also called to welcome guests. By creating a personalized sign you will add a little of your own personality and style to your outdoor décor. Keep reading to learn how to make the perfect porch sign with Chalk Couture.
Not as hard as you may think!
You may be a little intimidated by a porch sign project, maybe because it’s a large project. Not one you can easily work on at your desk or your lap while watching TV! Or possible because of the materials and tools required, wood, saws, stain, paint etc. I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be scary. Follow my easy steps and you will soon discover making your own porch sign is fun!
Selecting the right wood
There are no hard and fast rules of which wood you “should” use. Keep in mind that your sign will be outside. You want to make sure it’s not too flimsy that it will blow away or start to warp the first winter you use it. Typically I use 1/2″ plywood which is sanded one side. A sheet of plywood is typically 8’x4′. You can get 5+ signs from one sheet depending on your desired sign size. You can also use 1×8 or a 1×10 pine boards which usually come in 10 or 12 foot lengths. Live edge wood makes for a beautiful sign but a little more costly.
NOTE: Make sure you choose untreated wood as you don’t need or want chemically treated wood.
Check out this board my friend Megan made recently. Such a great addition to her home!
Cutting your wood to size
Hardware stores will cut wood for you and some will give you one or two cuts for free. I suggest calling around to see which locations provide this service. We typically get the store to cut the large board down by about half so we can fit in our truck, then do the additional cuts at home. Additional cuts are inexpensive and most hardware stores can provide this service so if you don’t have the tools at home don’t worry.
Sizing your sign
As with type of wood there are no set dimensions for signs. Take note of how much space you have to display it and what else do you have on your porch? Will a 5′ sign block your door bell? Do you want your sign to be the focal point or an accent? Typically I make my signs 9″ x 5′ but other common sizes are 8″w x 4′ high or 10″ wide x 6′ high. Like I said there are no rules. I also make mini porch signs that are 3′ high. This size is super cute as an accent used along side a couple of lanterns, planter boxes etc. or as a sign at a cabin or trailer.
It’s also a great idea to size your board based on the size of the letters you will be using, height and width. You want to be sure that the message you will display will fit comfortably and not look too crowded. You also don’t want the letters to look lost on an oversized board. I speak more about the Chalk Couture letter options later in this post.
Your sign will be exposed to the elements so you want to make it stays looking amazing for years to come. After a good sand I either paint with an outdoor paint or use an out door stain. Make sure to treat both sides and the edges of the board. Here are some of the paints and stains I have used successfully.
Note: the RUST-OLEUM Chalked paint is not an outdoor paint. The entire board will need a clear coat to protect before outdoor use.
- Cut board to size and sand
- Prepare surface with stain or paint. One coat is typically adequate but depending on paint/stain being used you may need two. Before applying a second coat make sure first is fully dry and give a lite sand first.
- Wax surface. This is not critical, however recommended as it will ensure your transfers will adhere and peel off from the surface better and chalk pastes will apply smoother. Check out my video on how to wax your surface. Waxing also helps prevent your transfer being damaged.
- Choose Chalk Couture transfers and paste colours to fit your personal design style
- After sign has dried layout design. For those of you that know me I generally just eyeball where I position my transfers. If you prefer to be more precise a tape and a set square will help make sure your letters are spaced evenly and are square.
- Fuzz, chalk, peal…..yes it’s that easy! To make sure my chalk paste doesn’t dry too fast I work on one letter at a time and wash each transfer in between.
- Once all of your letters have been chalked you can also add embellishments such as flowers, leaves, boarders. With Chalk Couture the possibilities are endless and there is something for everyone’s design style.
- When your project is complete you will want to seal it. Even though the board itself is weather proof the chalk paste design is not. There are lots of spray and liquid sealants on the market. Make sure the sealant says for outdoor use and confirm that it will not yellow your design.
Chalk Couture lettering options
Chalk Couture has a few options when it comes to your personalized porch sign. Here are the current options for lettering however the options are endless when it comes to addon images, boarders, flowers and other embellishments. Looking for ideas? Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, I’m happy to help!
Individual letters – These monogram letters are available in all letters of the alphabet which is incredible. Think of the options you can spell out on your sign! HO HO HO, BELIEVE, HELLO, OUR HOME……the list goes on and on!!
Welcome transfer set with add ons – I LOVE these transfers! The Welcome signpost letters are so simple and clean they will go with any décor style. The Welcome add on images can be used in place of the “O” so you can change up your sign seasonally. Check out the video from Chalk Couture to see how easy it is to create a seasonal porch sign.
Seasonal sign transfers – Last fall we had AUTUMN, Christmas Be Merry and currently HARVEST! I just love how Chalk Couture continues to provide their designers and customers with new and exciting options every season!
So what are you waiting for? Go grab a few friends and have a porch sign party or gather your supplies and start making Christmas gifts!
Come back soon to discover the benefits of using reusable silk screen Chalk Couture transfers over stencils cut with a Cricut (or other cutting machine).
Until next time,