I don’t know why, but lately I’ve been on a painted sign fixation. I showed you my Raven sign that I made with a genuine piece of old wood, but there really aren’t many of those around. So, if you still want to make a sign, the next best thing is free wood. Of course I’m talking about pallet wood. It has that aged, rough, beat up quality already built in.
The best thing about my signs, is that you don’t need any special tools to make one yourself. Well, you do need a computer and printer, but other than that…oh, and paint, a paint brush and a pencil…but hopefully you have all that just sitting around the house.
What you may not know about me is that I minored in art in college. I always thought the hardest part with any of my assigned projects was coming up with an idea. This, of course, was before the internet. Yes, I did live in the dark ages…don’t judge me, I’m that old.
But now, when I know I want to do a fish sign, I just Google fish sign. Kind of easy right? That’s where I came up with the above two fish bait signs. Love them!
Instead of just copying either of the pictures above, this time, I decided to put my own spin on the bait sign.
I found this great picture of a fish over at The Graphics Fairy. He started out facing the other way and for some reason (I don’t particularly know why) I wanted him to face right. In Picasa, you can easily do this by pressing ctrl/shift/h.
Over top of the fish I added my “BAIT” text. This font was Algerian. While I liked the slight shadow the font included, I did not like the style of the A. That was easy to change when I started painting.
The fish bait sign was saved and imported over to Publisher where I could enlarge and print out the sign in any size I liked. This sign was 24″ x 11″.
The final picture shows a print preview, the fish will print on 6 sheets of paper. If you need a little more detail, I’m pointing you once again over to my Raven sign.
Once the fish was printed out, the pages were trimmed of any border and taped together.
On the back of the fish picture, I once again used my homemade carbon paper….pencil scribbled on the back of the print out.
Now to prepare the pallet wood…only needed 3 pieces of pallet wood for this sign, each about 4 inches wide and 2 feet long. Each piece of pallet wood was sanded down with a handheld orbital sander, getting rid of all the fuzzy bits and pieces of the rough pallet wood.
Glued the pallet wood together with wood glue and held all the pieces with a couple of cross braces nailed into the back of the pallet wood.
Back on the front of the sign, a coat of dark stain was wiped on with a rag.
Over top of the stain, a coat of gray paint was added. This is actually the same paint I used for my crate makeover earlier in the week. Might as well use up some of that extra wall paint if you have it.
Once dry, the entire sign was sanded once again. You can see the stained wood shining through.
Transfer the fish outline to the pallet wood. Tape the fish pattern to the wood and trace the outline with a pen. The pencil scribbled on the back will transfer to the sign.
This guy was painted with just 6 colors. White, black, rusty brown, bright green, light blue and a medium blue.
Had to transfer the BAIT sign twice. Once I had painted in the fish, the transfer lines had filled in.
To make more of that “vintage” feel, the entire fish was once again sanded.
I added a coat of wax to seal off the fish. I actually have another sign in mind, so I’m not finished yet.
Don’t let the painting intimidate you, it’s kind of hard to mess up, especially when you sand half of the paint back off. But you could also choose a less multicolored fish…I still love the red fish in my googled picture.
And I was featured at