FULL DISCLAIMER: I first tried to write this post as I was making this sign back in JUNE!! Larkin was just 2 months old, and she did actually sleep on occasion and I could do certain things. Then she stopped sleeping. Seriously, she often napped a TOTAL of 20 minutes a day and was screaming and crying another 6-7 hours. I almost lost my mind. I still don’t know how I made it out alive. Months later (as you will see in the photos, lol) I finally had some more time to photograph my summer project… in the fall. And here I am, at the end of January, finishing this post. And darn it, I sort of liked reflecting on the details of my life that I’d included — I’m enjoying thinking about the heat of summer and how I love fall– so I left it. For the life of me I do not know how mom bloggers with young children get anything accomplished. I realize I do have an extremely difficult baby right now, but my lack of any time for myself is ridiculous. Ah, the season of motherhood! And if you are still reading and interested in this cute little pallet sign:
I’m slightly obsessed with the Fixer-Upper style.
It is hot down here in the south. Summer only officially began on Monday, but it is 97 degrees and HUMID today. I think I may be melting. Thank goodness baby Larkin was an April baby. I would die being preggo in this heat– how do people do it?!
And the heat has me daydreaming of quintessential summer: sunshine and lemonade. I have a pile of pallets by the driveway that have been beckoning me to make something out of them. I asked the hubs to bring them home two years ago so I could dismantle them and make this typography sign of one of my favorite quotes. It now hangs in what should be our dining room (and is currently full of kid clutter and a changing table. Sigh, someday…). Obsessed with rustic pallet goodness.
Then I read about pallet gardening on Mavis’s Garden Blog. I had leftovers and gave it a try. It worked really well for our strawberries, but alas this mama did not get netting up in time and the squirrels had a blast eating our crop. Then we had a copperhead decide he liked living in the little gaps under the wood. Nooooooo thank you! I love me some snakes, but not copperheads and not where my kiddos play.
So these bad boys were decaying nicely beside our driveway for over a year when I hit Pinterest for some inspiration. After finding a lemonade sign I loved (made by @thecreativepallet but there’s no longer a picture available. Sorry!!), I sketched my own. Want instructions to DIY? Here ya go 🙂
- Decide how big your sign will be. Mine is going above my fireplace, so I wanted it to be approximately
- Find some pallets and dismantle them. It should be ugly if you’re going for the rustic
look. Expose the rusted nail holes. leave rips in the ends of the wood planks. If you can’t get enough ugly pallet wood, you may have to purchase thin boards from your local home improvement store to reach the size you want. As long as you’re going to paint the sign, you’ll never notice the difference.
3. Cut at least two (maybe three depending on your sign’s size) cross pieces for stability. I had some leftover wood from our playground and cut it to size. You want these to be thin pieces of wood too. Keep in mind that once the sign is complete, all the wood together makes it rather heavy.
4. Screw the support pieces to each horizontal piece. This isn’t supposed to be precise. I used one 3/4″ screw per piece.
5. Paint it. I used an exterior white paint I had sitting around. Again it should be ugly painting. Leave dark edges unfinished. Don’t even try to paint the rusty nail holes.
6. Sketch your letters first. In pencil. I’ve been obsessed with lettering and hand-lettered wall prints for years, and every time I’ve created a sign like this I’ve relied on fonts found on my computer. If there is not one I’m looking for, I download a free one (just google “free fonts). Type the word(s) in a word document and copy them (for those who are comfortable free handing) OR print out the letters in the size you need, cut them out, then trace them onto the sign. To get the curved look of my Lemonade sign below, you can either use a photo editing software like photoshop to curve the letters or draw a bottom line curve on which to place/trace the letters.
Remember: it’s supposed to look like a vintage hand painted sign. Don’t sweat the pencil lines, they give it character.
7. Paint away. One thing I love about beat up old pallet wood projects is that if there is still pencil showing, it’s ok! If you can’t quite stay in all the lines, that’s ok too. It’s supposed to look beat up.