A Sign: Finishing the kitchen Post 2

This morning I was lamenting the fact that something I ordered had not been shipped yet and I would be stalled in my list of projects AND wouldn’t have anything to post until it made it here.  Then I had a moment of brilliance where I realized that I could switch the order of the projects. My brilliance may be blinding you about now, so feel free to put on a pair of shades so you don’t get squint lines.

So then I was lamenting having to put on my shoes and get into the cold van to drive to Lowes and get a board for a sign I had been thinking about putting over the sink in the kitchen:

Remember how I said I had done a lot of sewing for my home over the years? This roman shade was a project several summers ago...

After perusing a few blogs to get sign ideas, I had decided I wanted to score the board so that it looked like a few boards stuck together.  I had seen a blog where someone had done that to their kitchen table so that it looked like a farmhouse table.  Then (grab your shades) another flash of brilliance–I could actually use some of the 1×3 furring strips I already had here.  They were slightly warped and rough looking which made them perfect for an old looking sign.  Woohoo, no cold van!

These furring strips were already sanded prior to this project (see the how-to button in the blog header). If you want to use furring strips and have them look like these, you'll have to sand them first.

I cut the boards on the miter saw to 4′ and then cut some boards for the back to screw into to hold the sign together.  I used a countersink bit to make sure the screws didn’t scratch the wall once it is hung.

You can see my color tool there in the corner of that last picture.  I’m a “play it really safe” girl with my wardrobe and my house so the path of least stress for me would have been white or brown letters on the weathered board.  But I love this piece above my cabinets and wanted to bring more of that color into the room.  According to my color tool, it should work.  This was my inspiration:

Not a great photo of the Sago tin, but I took this photo at night with the flash. In natural light I love it.

The base coat of the sign was a mixture of white, a drop of black, and a couple of teaspoons of brown thrown in.  The white came out of a gallon I had in the basement and the rest are craft bottles of acrylic paint.  I mixed that with water so it didn’t go on evenly or too thick.  I also dipped my brush in some walnut acrylic after loading it with the “white” so that I got streaks and areas of brown.  This is how it ended up–I think it looks pretty close to a weathered board:

Once I had picked out what I wanted the sign to say (I like my decorating to mean something to me and my family, if I can.  I happen to want some chickens, so this sign may portend the future–fingers and toes crossed).  Next I used the Aharoni font in my Print Shop software to print out large letters (Word will work, but you will have to enlarge the font quite a bit) in the outline option on cardstock.  I cut those out and put painters tape on the back to hold them in place:

Then I did a test on my scrap wood.  I usually do each step on a scrap piece of wood so I can try it out.  Up until this point I was testing on the back of the sign.  But now I started a test scrap to see if dabbing paint on the outside of the letters was going to get the look I was going for.  It did not.  Hmmm…what to do, what to do…

New plan.  Roughly paint the entire piece with the teal paint (leftover from our basement walls), trace the letters, and paint them in roughly with the white:

Using a large brush, get some paint on the end and then remove most of it on a paper towel so you get uneven coverage. If you look closely you'll see the letters stenciled in also.

For the next part I used a small square paint brush and one of my daughters skinny paintbrushes to get crisper corners:

Get some paint on the brush and then remove most of it so you get uneven coverage again.  On the edges where I had more paint on the brush so I would get a crisper edge, I then made sure to feather out the paint so it wasn’t too built up.

I used the paint can opener to make some distress marks in the wood.

I like the sign how it looks now, but in my head I imagined it more distressed up on the wall.  On my test piece the very watery walnut mix I painted over it all partially washed off the very fresh white letter.  I repainted the white letter, will let it dry overnight and try it again tomorrow to see if it works once the white has a chance to get really dry.

Ok–that was all yesterday.  Today I’ve got it up on the wall:



My Man thought he was hi-larious last night when he said that my eggs aren’t really fresh anymore.  Since I’m done hatching chicks and I’m feeling pretty good about myself (and because it was a little funny), I let him live.

What do you think–was I ok stepping out of my comfort zone with the color?  Should I dirty it up a little with some brown stain/paint?


Linking up to:

Weekend Wrap Up Party at Tatertots and Jello

Saturday Night Special at Funky Junk Interiors

Frugal Fridays at The Shabby Nest

VIP Party at Designer Garden

Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch

Get Your Craft On at Today’s Creative Blog

All Thingz Related

Whatever Goes Wednesday at Someday Crafts

Show and Tell at Blue Cricket Design

Transformation Thursdays at The Shabby Chic Cottage

Strut Your Stuff at Somewhat Simple




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About Pink Toes and Power Tools

I'm a DIY girl with a blog. Trying to complete one project before I jump into the next one!

24 responses to “A Sign: Finishing the kitchen Post 2”

  1. Jan Grose says :

    Love the sign. It really complements the vintage objects on top of the cabinets.

    Should it be darker? It depends on how true the photos area. Of the photos you posted, I like the darkest one best. If that one is truest, then it’s good as is.


  2. Emily P. says :

    Love the simplicity! I would leave the sign as is. I like how it’s a nice contrast to your dark walls and cabinets.


  3. Mel says :

    I like it as is. Thanks for taking us through your trials and tribulations :)

    I’m also glad that you let your hubby live for another day


  4. Pink Toes and Power Tools says :

    Thanks everyone! Now that I’ve lived with it for a few days, I’m liking it as is so I’m glad others think the same thing!

    It’s really hard to get a good shot of the kitchen with all the snow outside glaring into the window. The darker shots are without the flash and are a truer representation of the actual colors–wall and otherwise. The last shot was with the flash.

    It was a close one for the husband. He needs to watch it now that I’m armed with power tools :)


  5. rhiannon says :

    it looks great! i love the hint of green


  6. Shannon @ Cozy HomeScenes says :

    I love the color. The brown would have been too blah and blended in with the walls. The teal made the sign pop out. I love the look of your sign and how you displayed it.


  7. Lisa Serendipity Chic Design says :

    What a great pop! Those boards look better than anything you would have gotten at HD….I have some plank boards ready to piece together too for some signs….so much better than spending money! Love the saying you used too…

    Take care,


  8. Heather @ The Black's Best says :

    I like the teal and agree with the color opinions above. I wouldn’t add the stain. There is just enough pop to make your sign stand out! Very cute, BTW, I would have smacked my husband (good naturedly, of course…haha!). It is kind of funny.


  9. Sommer says :

    I love this sign! You did a fantastic job! I would be delighted to have you share this at my VIP party today =) http://designergarden.blogspot.com/2011/01/vip-party-2.html


  10. Elaine says :

    That’s looks great! I just put a bunch of rustic old wood in the garbage cuz I just couldn’t think of what to use it for. I’ll have to dig it out now, I’m inspired. It’s the perfect touch for over your sink. Thanks for the idea!


  11. Jennifer @ Social Salutations says :

    Love this sign – great job!!


  12. Heather says :

    Love the scale. It fits the space well!


  13. Lacie says :

    I love this! I am planning to make a distressed wood sign in the near future and will definitely be referring back to this for pointers. Thanks for sharing!


  14. Jaclyn McCord says :

    Love it, love it, love it. I just happen to have a space like that above my sink window… I’m thinking “fresh coffee” or “bon Appetit.” Leave the color- you’re lucky that the daring color worked- 9 times out of 10, my daring ventures end up as failures that go undisplayed. I also have similar decor above my cupboards… mine manifested out of fond memories of helping someone decorate theirs.


  15. Pink Toes and Power Tools says :

    Thanks for all of the help with deciding on whether or not to “dirty it up” and color choice. I’ll go with popular opinion (and I am liking it as-is too!).

    Drop me a line if you end up making a sign (Contact Me is up on the menu). I’d love to check it out!


  16. Robin says :

    I LOVE your egg sign. I totally want to make something like this for my kids new play room…but instead it will say something like dream or imagine or something. Anyway, just wanted to let you know that I loved it so much that I featured it on my blog today. {I hope you don’t mind!} I do a post every weekend feauturing budget-friendly inspring ideas. You can find the post here:

    Have a great weekend!


  17. kelly@imperfecthomemaking says :

    This is so lovely and cute. Great Job! I found your site through Keep Home Simple.


  18. Tracy says :

    This is so cute. I love how you distressed it. It looks great in your kitchen.

    If uou want to link it up to my prim link party, you’re more than welcome to. It runs from Sundays to Wednesdays.



  19. Elisabeth says :

    You did an awesome job. Thanks for the tutorial. I’ve been wanting to make one with Eggs written on it but wasn’t sure how to make it look distressed.

    I think the color looks very nice in your kitchen.


  20. Deborah Carlson says :

    Love it so much and love the colour !! Its perfect!
    My hubby and have been trying our hand at making some signs for us and family and I love it!
    I love the teal colour you chose..so natural and pretty!
    Im following you (purehunnybee)
    Looking forward to getting to know you better!

    Deborah :)


  21. Beth says :

    I love your sign. I’m raising 10 chicks and building my own coop. You have inspired me to make a sign like this and I think I will wrap the entire sign in rusty chicken wire to give it an additional old feel.


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