A decorative welcome sign hung on the front door puts a smile on the face of your visitors as they arrive. A handmade welcome sign can show off your creativity, allow you to express your individuality and complement your home perfectly. Regardless of your skill level, you can make a decorative welcome sign that will let your friends know that they should feel comfortable in your home.
Prepare the Wood Plaque
If you are inexperienced at woodworking, you can buy an unfinished wood plaque at the craft store as the base of your homemade welcome sign. They are available in a variety of shapes. However, if you have the skills, you can cut and sand a piece of wood for your welcome sign. Keep the size of your door in mind when deciding how big to make your welcome sign. You do not want it to take up the entire width of your door or block any glass windows in your door. Aim for one-third to one-half the width of your door. If you are not going to display your decorative welcome sign on your front door, you have more leeway when deciding on the size.
Add Decorative Wood Pieces
An easy way to make a welcome sign is to glue wooden letters and shapes on to your unfinished wood plaque. Your local craft store sells letters and shapes in different styles. You just need to arrange them to your liking and then affix everything to your base with wood glue. Paint or stain the plaque first, if you'd like.
Craft paint gives you a lot of room for creativity when making your decorative welcome sign. Begin by painting the background in one or more colors. Your background can be as busy or simple as you would like. Consider adding stripes or painting the edges a different color than the rest of the sign. Once the background paint is dry, you can paint the word "Welcome" either in freehand or by using a stencil.
Decoupage can give your homemade welcome sign a shabby chic look. Leave the background unfinished or paint or stain it. You can also cover the entire plaque in decoupaged paper, such as newspaper or wrapping paper, for a different look. Cut out the word "welcome" or the individual letters from a newspaper or magazine. Consider including a photo of your family or pet. Arrange the letters to your satisfaction and then attach them to the background with outdoor decoupage glue.
With a woodburning tool, you can burn your design into your homemade welcome sign. Woodburning tools are shaped like a pen. The tip heats up and burns the wood, changing the color. There are many different woodburning techniques to add depth to a woodburned design, but a beginner can still use a woodburning tool to write the word "Welcome" and add a few decorative elements.
Protect Your Decorative Welcome Sign
If your homemade welcome sign will be displayed in a sheltered area, you can seal it with outdoor decoupage glue, which is water resistant. If your sign will be exposed to the elements, then protect it with clear spray paint. Remember to coat all sides of your welcome sign to protect it fully.
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