Making a series of signs can be challenging enough on its own, but if you're trying to save some time and make a set of nearly identical banners and signs, you'll need some kind of a template. The simplest way to accomplish this is with a stencil or a set of stencils for your sign.
Things You'll Need
- Card stock (2 or 3 pieces more than needed for your signs)
- Black marker
- Utility knife
- Masking tape
- Paint or markers
- Construction paper (optional)
Design Your Sign
Draw a rough version of your sign on a sheet of card stock in pencil. You should make the lettering large and boxy, so it's visible from far away. Bear in mind that passers-by will only see the sign quickly, so you need to get the message across in only a few seconds' reading time. You can also use images from the web or magazines (See Resources).
Add bridges. On some letters, such as A, R and B, there are "islands" of white-space inside the actual letter. Without bridges, the letter O would just look like a circle, so on letters or images with floating pieces, draw at least two 1/2- to 3/4-inch "bridges" connecting the outside of the letter to the inside. Repeat this for every letter or image with islands.
Trace the final sign image with your marker. Trace all of the letters and bridges, and any images you're using. Draw Xs on the spaces you will cut out.
Look over the drawing and make any final changes you feel you need to.
Cut the X-marked pieces out of the stencil with your utility knife. The neater the cuts, the neater your final signs will be. Make sure none of the bridged pieces fall out. The stencil is now complete.
Using the Stencil
Align your stencil over a fresh piece of card stock. Make sure all of the corners line up evenly.
Tape the stencil to the card stock. Use at least two pieces of tape per side, in the corners.
Draw or paint your image through the stencil onto the card stock. If you want to add black outlines to the images, use a black permanent marker after the paint or ink has dried.
Repeat Steps 1 through 3 for any other signs you need to make.
Tips & Warnings
- If you want to remove the bridges from your final product, you can put masking tape around the bridge and fill it in. If you have a lot of bridges and signs to make, it may be worth copying the original stencil and making a second one with the bridges in different locations.
- When finished, depending on how clean your stencil(s) are, you can tape colored construction paper to the back-side over the spaces and use it as another sign.
- Letters you need Bridges on: A, a, B, b, D, d, e, O, o, P, p, Q, q and R.
Sign Maker Job Description
Sign makers design, create and install all types of signs, including those with lights and motion. These signage systems also are called...
How to Create a Printable Door Sign Online for Free
The Internet is filled with useful, innovative websites that allow you to create your own art and home accessories and print them...
How to Make a Stop Sign with Printable Traffic Signs
Printable traffic sign templates make it easy to create props, decorations and craft projects. Stop signs can be created with the printable...
How to Make a Stencil Template for Signs
Stencil templates are reusable plastic sheets in which a design has been cut. The stencil is used to paint the design onto...
How to Create Templates
Creating a template either in Microsoft Word or OpenOffice is not hard. You can choose from a variety of templates such as...
Wood Sign Routing Techniques
Wood routing is an enjoyable hobby. You can create art, or functional wooden signs. You can use standard fonts for your sign,...
How to Make Router Templates
Router templates can be very simple to make, and a quarter-inch hardboard can be used and sanded to make a crisp, clean...
How to Make Letters With a Router
When making letters with a router, it's best to use a commercial version of a router template. Learn about everything needed to...