Wednesday, December 15, 2010

DIY Week: DIY Signs

At the end of your wedding, you will look around and say, "huh. Did we really need to do that?"  That's how I felt about our awesome wooden signs.  I mean, yeah, they were awesome.
(photo by the best man)
But truthfully, they were not awesome enough to be worth it.  I don't think they actually proved to be helpful to anyone, and they were a LOT of work.  
We went to NJ for my triathlon and bought the pole and wood for the signs.  Mark cut them into arrows and then used a router to create holes in the wood for them.  We painted everything brown using espresso spray paint from home depot.  

Then we found a font and downloaded it and printed the words.  Then we spent a good two hours or so cutting out the words.  Then Mark tried to spray paint the words on.  It didn't work.  So we had to re-spray paint them, and then tried using a stencil brush.  That worked better, but not great.  What ultimately worked was to just use a regular paintbrush and trace around the stencils.*

We attached them to the pole using nails and woodglue.  It seemed like this would hold.  It didn't.  The guys added the ribbon you see in the above photos because apparently it started falling out.  The only thing that seemingly worked really well was using an umbrella stand to hold it upright, rather than trying to fill a bucket with cement or something.  I highly recommend this method.  

In retrospect, this is a project I would have either skipped, or cared less about.  Originally the plan was to make them look like NPS signs - we even had little graphics printed out to put on the signs, but we couldn't figure out how to stencil them on and then we ran out of time.  Since we didn't use the graphics, we didn't need to be so careful about the fonts and could have just hand-painted the words on in the first place.  Oh well, live and learn.  Plus the signs will be charming hanging around our apartment.  

*When you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras.  The solution to your wedding DIY problems is not going to be something exotic that nobody has ever thought of. It will be something a fourth grader would do.  


  1. Good to know. I really want to make signs like this, but recently I've been thinking of skipping them. I'm not sure I'm going to have the time to do them at this point and I have zero patience right now for complicated projects.