The V Spot

Rants, observations and home decorating from a woman with no time for a blog.

How to make a Vintage Lake Sign

Our friends, Jeff & Tanya,  invited us to share a lake house with them last month.   We had an absolute blast!
lake mosaic, lake tulloch, tubing, fishing

I wanted to do a bit more than just write a thank you note.  Jeff & Tanya have a beautiful back yard BBQ area and they have lots of vintage signs out there too.

I decided to try to make a sign to add to their collection to serve as our “thank you.”
Lake Tulloch, sign, boat rides, blue, turquoise

I have done previous posts on how to do this distressed art technique.  Click to see the Family Rules, the Spring Art work and the Wine Cork Art work.

For this I will show you how I did the “layered look” for the letters on Lake Tulloch.
sign mosaic, layered, vintage, distressed

Step 1: Cut out your letters (or use store bought if you don’t have a Cricut or Silhouette) and arrange them on your primed board.  I wanted my lettering to be white.  (If I had wanted different color lettering, I would have used that as my base coat.)  Make sure the letters are pressed down firmly.
Step 2: Paint the background color over the tops of the letters.  In this case I wanted an aqua blue on top and a bright blue in “Waves” on the bottom.
Step 3: Once the paint is dry, take the outer part from your cut letters and lay them just a bit to the left of the letter stuck to the board.  You will be over-lapping the original letter just a bit.
Step 4: Lightly dab on your second paint color.
Step 5:  When you peel away the 2 layers of stencil, it should look like this.
Step 6: Peel away the other letters.  This was a rough piece of plywood, so the paint bled under the letters.  since I’m going to distress it anyway, it doesn’t matter.  (Behold the beauty of distressed artwork!)
Step 7:  (Not shown) When the paint dried, I used the orbital sander to further distress the piece, then put a nice layer of Mid Podge all over it for a little sheen and to seal it.
Lake tulloch, sign mosaic, distressed

I hope they like it.
If they don’t it’s OK.  Distressed signs aren’t everyone’s cup of tea… the purpose of this was to serve as a thank you card, and as long as they know how appreciative we are, then the sign did its job.

If they don’t like it for a wall, they do have a fabulous outdoor fireplace… Paint and Mod Podge would serve as a fabulous accelerant if they decide to burn it instead of hang it.  (However, my fingers are crossed that they like it.)

Linking to:
Home Stories A 2 Z  Savvy Southern Style



Esther is not-quite-perfect said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:07 pm
They would have to be crazy to not like it!!!! It's perfect!! You can send me a thank you card like this anytime!!! ;)

Ann Marie | white house, black shutters said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:08 pm
LOL! You are hilarious. I'm SURE they'll like it and won't add it to their burn pile. Great project, love the font and shadowing especially on the top one, it really looks like an old sign. Reason number 523 that I need a Silhoutte... I need signs!

Beverly @ said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:14 pm
What a great thank you note Viv!! I love that idea and the sign turned out really cute! I'm sure they'll love it. :)

MiMi said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:35 pm
I'm sure they will LOVE it!!! That is really awesome, I love the layered look!
I also want that big floaty thing the kids were on. :)

Maddie Kertay- The Domestic Anarchist said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:40 pm
I think not!.. they will cherish it forever... and who in their right mind does not like vintage signs?...


Nicole@Thrifty Decorating said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:53 pm
What a great idea for a thank you!

Debbie@ said...

July 11, 2011 at 5:59 pm
Can you come to my lake? I love the sign!!! I need one!

Pam said...

July 11, 2011 at 6:02 pm
That is a GREAT sign! But I do love your sense of humor that it would burn well. I'm sure they won't be burning that!

Have a great day.

LeAnne said...

July 11, 2011 at 6:37 pm
Totally awesome. If they don't like it, send it my way....I'll pay for the shipping!

The Answer Is Chocolate said...

July 11, 2011 at 6:39 pm
Oh I am so sure they will NOT be adding this to their burn pile! It's perfect and what a wonderful way to show your thanks. Just awesome!

Johanson Family said...

July 11, 2011 at 7:06 pm
I just want to be a fly on the wall in your house or even peek in your brain b/c you must be in constant idea mode.. you have amazing ideas/crafts and you always make awesome stuff that people will actually use and love!!

Connie Weiss said...

July 11, 2011 at 7:41 pm
How fun!!

I love it!

drollgirl said...

July 11, 2011 at 10:17 pm
i bet they will LOVE it! if not, they will think of you when it burns on a chilly night! lol. no way -- they would never do that. they will love it!

and i need friends like these! i have a verrrrrrrrry distant relative with a great beach house in santa cruz, and i am hoping hoping HOPING to get to visit soon.

The Old Block House said...

July 12, 2011 at 12:23 am
This is absolutely wonderful! I'd love sign like that.

Going to follow and explore your blog.

gertie @

My Cottage Charm said...

July 12, 2011 at 12:30 am
Thanks Vivienne...I'm SO glad you liked my laundry room reveal!
Your sign is adorable!...You're a talented gal!

Elz said...

July 12, 2011 at 2:59 am
So cute. You're welcome to come to our ranch property anytime-that thank you would be perfect! ;)

Kelli said...

July 12, 2011 at 2:11 pm
What a wonderful thank you...that's perfect! You're such a good friend.

Tina said...

July 12, 2011 at 3:51 pm
Found you from the Tip Junkie party! This sign is too cute! We have a house on a river that I would love to do! Maybe tubing instead of boats. Unless we still are in a drought in Texas, there may be no more water for tubing! :)

Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

July 13, 2011 at 12:21 am
This a wonderful thank you! Beautiful!

Amy {The Idea Room} said...

July 13, 2011 at 4:02 am
What a great gift! Love it! I am sure they loved it as well! Thanks for sharing it with us!

Handy Man, Crafty Woman said...

July 13, 2011 at 3:16 pm
Anyone receiving this will love it! Thank you for linking to Handy Man, Crafty Woman Wicked Awesome Wednesday!

Jenn Erickson said...

July 13, 2011 at 5:26 pm
Your lake trip looks like it was an incredible time, and what a thoughtful, creative and generous way to thank you friends. The sign is fabulous, Viv!

Michelle said...

July 13, 2011 at 8:16 pm
Love the "shading" on the words. We just stayed at a friends lake house too, i bet they would love something like this. Thanks for linking up with DIY under $5!

Johnnie said...

July 13, 2011 at 10:22 pm
That is an adorable sign, Viv. Great job.

Amy Gilman and Emily Lee (Sisters of the Wild West) said...

July 14, 2011 at 4:19 am
love your sign!! It turned out AWESOME! love the colors too! please link it up at our link party this week!

Holly Lefevre said...

July 14, 2011 at 6:01 am
This is fabulous. I have been thinking about making my parents one since last year when my family took a trip to Bass Lake - that is where mom, dad and my brother and myself used to go when I was a kid...brought back so many memories...This is a great tutorial.

Kimberly said...

July 14, 2011 at 2:54 pm
That is such a cool sign! I just wish I had a wonderful lakeside cabin to hang it in, awww dreaming. :)

Jennifer said...

July 16, 2011 at 1:01 am
I am sure they will LOVE it!! If not - I'll take it, LOL!! I would love if you would link this up to Saturday Social!

- Jenn @ Social Salutations

Laura at Ms. Smartie Pants said...

July 16, 2011 at 3:20 am
I have a question. I have noticed when I do lettering with my silhouette that I have trouble getting the lines to thick enough. I can enlarge the lettering but the thickness never get thicker. Can you give me any tips?

Jennifer said...

July 18, 2011 at 2:36 am
Hi Vivienne! Just wanted to let you know you were featured at Saturday Social! Thanks again for linking up - I hope you come back again next week!!



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