DIY Faux Metal Letters for an Autumn-Inspired Mantle

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Faux metal letters

Although I keep most of the same seasonal decorations, year after year, I try to add something new each season. This year, I saw some really cute metal letters at the craft store and thought that they would be perfect for on my mantle. But there were a couple of problems with that idea. First, they didn’t have all of the letters I needed to spell autumn. Second, they were $8.00 each which would’ve cost me over $50.00. So, I decided to go the DIY route instead. I saved a lot of money and I love how they turned out.

Wood letters

Things you’ll need:

  • Wood letters (in whichever size you prefer)
  • Silver “hammered” spray paint
  • Craft paints in various colors
  • Paint brush
  • Newspaper

Start by covering your work space with newspaper to protect it.  Spray paint the letters with the silver “hammered” metal effect spray paint, following the directions on the can of paint.

Painted metal letters

Apply a second coat, if necessary. The brand of spray paint I purchased said that it needed to be applied within 1 hour or after 48 hours. Then, allow the paint to dry completely. I love the effect!

Add red paint to letter

Next, use a paint brush with a minimal amount of paint on it to add some color to the letters. Brush it along the edges and randomly on the letters. Dab with a rag to spread out the color and removed any excess paint. You want the added color to look random. It should be light in some places and darker in others. I used orange paint on the “A” and “M”, green paint on each “U” and red paint on the “T” and “N”.

Painted letter A

Place the letters on your mantel or on a shelf with some acorns and fall leaves. Depending on the thickness of your letters, you might need to use some mounting putty to help them stand up. You can see the little bits of blue underneath the letter “U”. Another fun idea for these letters, would be to hang them on your front door. Glue the letters to a piece of heavy duty twine or a yardstick in a vertical line. Then, hang the twine or yardstick on your door.

Photo Credits: Tonia Larson

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