Hello! Dania here. If you’re a new Designing Dawn reader, allow me to introduce myself. I’m Dawn’s twin sister, and I occasionally pop in with random posts here on her blog. (You can see all my Twin Tuesday posts by clicking here, in case you’re curious.)
Today, I have a tutorial for you on a really fun project I spent some time on this past summer. I’m a teacher, and home during the warm months, so I have some free time to get extra crafty. A few months ago, I spied this giant pallet in a dumpster at a new home construction site near my house. I kept my eye on it for a few days (to make sure it really was being thrown out) before I made my husband help me drag it out of the dumpster and into our garage. Living in a new construction neighborhood has its advantages.
When I say this was a huge pallet, I mean super huge. It weighed easily 100 lbs, so my hubby cut it into smaller, manageable sections for me. Then I removed the large back bracing boards and re-positioned the main pallet boards closer together, using 2×4’s in place of the giant heavy posts that were previously on the back. This made the whole thing quite a bit lighter, and less bulky to hang.
I only used one section of this giant thing for the pallet sign in this tutorial, so I have a few more projects to go, and a couple fun ones in mind! The possibilities are endless. :D
Back to the tutorial! Once I had the pallet all cleaned and prepped for my project, I sanded it down and painted it with chalk paint. The next step was to decide what I wanted it to say. I typed out my text on the computer, and printed it out at the size I needed. To do this, I had to tile my image onto several pieces of paper and tape them together (you could also have a large black and white print — or engineering blueprint — made at an office supply store). Once I knew my lettering was the right size, I taped it to the front of my board.
With the paper template taped down, I traced around the outside of all the text with a ball point pen, making sure to press the pen down enough that it would leave an indent on the painted wood underneath. (I forgot to take a photo of this step, so just use your imagination here, ok?) This was by far the most tedious part, but it’s worth it, I promise. Once the font was all outlined, I removed the paper and use a paint pen to paint the words on, using the letter outlines I had created as a guide and filling in each letter as I went.
Pro tip: A paint pen is WAY easier for this type of detail work than a standard paintbrush. I actually started out with a paintbrush, and Dawn suggested that I try a paint pen (affiliate link) after I lamented to her about how much work the brush was. I was able to get much cleaner and more precise results with the pen, and it just felt much more natural to me.
Filling in all the letters is my favorite part! You can really see the sign coming together, and once it’s all finished it looks amazing!
Ta-da! A finished DIY pallet sign that was super inexpensive. I hung this giant using a French cleat to evenly support the weight and make sure it was nice and stable. It has been such a fun addition to our outdoor patio space. I’ve gotten lots of compliments on it, and a couple requests to make more!
I hope you like my little DIY project today. Look for more of me here in the future, and if you’d like, come follow me on Instagram!