Tuesday, April 02, 2013


I wanted to show you what has been occupying my time for a last little bit.  I've been in the mood to make signs, mostly for babies, but also for "love".  I did each one a little differently and thought I'd show the pros and cons of each mistake method.

#1  Let's start with my "love" sign...

This was a simple concept, but a difficult execution...I bled all over this one!  I first painted the canvas and wiped a glaze on it.  Next, I  cut a piece of form-core board to fit inside the back of the frame (sorry for the lack of pictures) thinking this would be thick enough to stop the tacks before they entered my fingers!  Wrong!    The next step was to simply trace the letters on the canvas.  I  printed them off and used graphite paper between the print and the canvas and traced them.   I then began pushing upohstery tacks into the canvas and formcore and my fingers.  It was a little tricky to get even placement of the tacks.

#2  This is my God sign...

This one is a bit more complicated to execute, but I've done several of these as gifts, and, unlike the previous sign, this one was bloodless!  The first step was selecting all of the fonts I wanted to use and the placement of them.  The next step was painting the canvas background color.  When the canvas was dry, I used the tracing method to transfer the "background" words and paint them.  (I've tried paint pens with limited success but prefer my favorite 28 year-old paint brush because I know how it responds and I feel it gives a better final result.)  I then add the "top" words.  At this point, it is sometimes hard to quit because I could always add "just one more".

Here is a picture of the process I used on this sign...

This next sign was a first for me and was harder yet because all of the information had to "square up" on the final version.  I used a Silhouette program to get the spacing and made a cardstock stencil to trace the information on the primed canvas, but it could be done with the print/tracing method too.  This was just fun to paint and the mother of this baby was thrilled I would do this for her.  I was more than happy to do this one and it lead to two more baby signs...

Here is the stencil I cut...

Because I have an old Silhouette, it does not cut 12x12 paper, so I had to do this in two cuts.  If you are lost at this point because you do not understand what a Silhouette machine does, don't worry.  This is still an option from a standard computer with a word program and tracing paper.

Here's the canvas with the penciled outlines, ready for painting.  Just paint the blanks...

I have to say that sometimes I think this is the best version of the project because it is so perfect.  It might be cool sometime to just pencil it in and fill it in with graphite and spray a sealer over it!  Another idea.

#3  Here's the final version...

#4  Here is the second baby sign I did...

I shadowed the baby's name on this one a little bit because it wasn't popping out the way it should when it was viewed at a distance.  This little one's nursery was in camouflage so I mottled  the paints a little to reflect that.  I did try to just stencil the baby's name on this one using the cardstock stencil and I don't recommend that method--lots of bleeding that I had to correct.

#5  Second Addison sign

Yes, two Addison signs, but different babies.  Might be the next popular name for girls.  This one was blah until I added the pink, then POP!  It brought it to life.

Wow, this is one long post and if you've stayed with it till now, THANKS A BUNCH!  I hope the methods were clear enough, but if not, please comment or email me and I will expand my explanation for you.  Thanks for reading.

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  1. awesome job love your signs
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  2. How fun! I was just thinking that I should create signs like these for my two children. Thanks for sharing!


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