Patriotic Door Hanger

Is it just me or is the summer flying by waaaaaay too fast?! I think I just barely realized that the 4th of July is this weekend! That means parades and barbecues and fireworks --- and people coming over --- and I haven't put up one single red, white and blue decoration yet! What the heck's wrong with me?

If you're thinking the same thing ---- calm down --- it's not too late to put together something fabulous for your front door, where everyone is sure to see it.

This door sign is cute, simple and best of all ***thrifty*** (what's more American than thrifty?!) I had quite a few of the supplies already, but I did buy 3 cans of spray paint, hinges and transfer paper. I spent about $15, with the transfer paper being the most expensive item ($7.50), but it can be used over and over, and I only used a little of the spray paint --- so really it probably cost less than $10 --- wooot wooot!!

I put it together in only a couple of hours (that includes time out to pour a couple of bowls of cereal and change a stinky diaper :)

Here's how to make it:

First, unless you are very good at painting words freehand, you'll want to print out the words you're going to use. I used a different font style for each word and I made the fonts as big as I possibly could. I was using "Paint", which allows a maximum sized font of 288.

I didn't actually end up using the top and bottom fonts pictured, but you get the idea.

The wood I used is just a sheet of MDF (aka plywood). You'll want to measure your wood according to how big your words are going to be. I had my handy hubby cut them 21 inches wide, then the middle piece is 7 inches high and the top and bottom pieces are each 6 inches high.

I gave the wood a really quick sanding just to get rid of any potential slivers, (I've learned from experience, *ouch*!)

Next comes the spray paint. This is a small enough project that you could use a brush if you really wanted to, but why would you? Only kidding, you do whatever makes you smile :)

I for one though, have been converted. I now worship spray paint --- okay, maybe worship is too strong of a word, but I. do. love. the stuff!

Here's the paint I used for this project:
These can all be purchased at Walmart for $2.67, which is by far the cheapest price I've seen anywhere.

First, prime each board. This type of wood really, really soaks up the paint, so you MUST prime first unless you want to be putting a dozen coats of paint on.

For this project I used the Krylon primer because it was cheaper and I figured I didn't need the Kilz brand for this small of a project. The Krylon worked okay, but I definitely could tell a difference in the coverage, Kilz just works better.

When you're spraying make sure that you've got your wood pieces spaced far enough apart that you won't be getting any over-spray.

Once the paint is dry enough to touch it's time to sand the edges. I like to sand before the paint is completely dried and hard because it comes off much easier --- so don't wait too long.

The next step is to glaze the pieces. Using a paintbrush, apply a thin coat of glaze to the entire board including the edges. I used a chocolate brown-tinted glaze for this project.

You don't need to wait long before you start removing the glaze. Lighter colors will show the glaze better than dark colors, so you'll vary the time you leave it on depending on the color you're glazing over.

In this case, I only waited a few seconds before I began wiping it off. I used a clean, damp paper towel and just gently wiped off the excess. Repeat the process until you get the look you're going for.

Here are the three boards after they've been glazed.

This next part is definitely the most time consuming of the whole project. It's not hard, it just takes a little bit of time.

Wondering how you're going to get your cute little words onto the wood?

Here's how: You'll need some wax-free graphite or transfer paper. The best place to find this is at an arts store like Michaels or Hobby Lobby. No, Walmart doesn't carry it, I looked. *sigh*

This is really simple to do--- put the transfer paper (transfer side down) on your wood. Place your printed words on top in the exact spot where you want it to be on your board and tape it down in a couple of places. Then trace the outline of your word and whalaa! --- your word is written.

You're going to paint the letters on and then distress them. I found that it works best to do one letter at a time so that you have time to wipe off some of the paint before it dries --- this is an easier method than trying to sand some off after it's already dried.

You can do this part pretty quickly and carelessly --- you want the letters to look distressed and rustic, not smooth and perfect. Paint it on, and rub some off --- pretty simple.

After painting the words, I brushed over them with glaze to distress them even more.

I thought it would be fun to connect the boards together using hinges. I bought these at Walmart for about $3 (for all of them).

(Be sure that the screws aren't too long for the depth of your boards. I had to buy different screws than the ones that came with my hinges because the others would have gone right through the back of the boards, and scratched up my already banged-up front door).

I didn't want silver hinges, so once again I used some handy dandy spray paint to make them beautiful! I sprayed them with a dark brown, and then a little black. Be sure to spray the top part of the screws too.

When your hardware has dried you can get to work putting it all together. Just figure out the spacing that you want for your boards, and screw those puppies on.

The last step is to attach something to hang it with. I used some dark brown ribbon that I fastened with a staple gun. (Do you think I used enough staples? That ribbon ain't goin' nowhere!)

Now hang your lovely creation on your front door for all of your neighbors to envy enjoy.

You'll be feeling so patriotic, you'll want to deck everyone and everything out in red, white and blue. Well go for it --- be proud to be an American!!!

So do you like this project? Is there something you would've done differently? Have you made something similar? Are you going to make this?

Post your comments --- I'd love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading and have a fabulous Independence Day!!!

I'm linking up:  The Inspired Room


Jamila McFarland said...

You're not alone, I don't have a thing of red, white, or blue up yet either! But I love this door hanging. The only thing I was going to ask is if you could use regular spray paint for the hinges or do you need a special kind for the metal they are made out of?

Jamila McFarland said...
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Jamila McFarland said...
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Janeal @ decorative deals said...

Jamila, You can use almost any type of spray paint --- I think spray paint loves metal best --- it works great on it. I just used the cheapo brand, and it worked fine. Thanks for the comment. *hugs*