Art of a Sign
I’m sure this isn’t the first place you’ve seen a piece of wood, stained that deep, rich espresso color with that flowy white modern day calligraphy, right? So what’s so special? First off, the project gives me time in the wood shop with my unbelievably talented dad, and affords me the opportunity to switch things up a bit …
What’s the process? Well, I leave the heavy duty machinery-operating to him, e.g. planing or cutting down the wood, and I pitch in with the hand sanders and the staining. Each sign starts as a piece of 1″ x 6″ x 24″ poplar wood that he cuts down to my standard, or not so standard sizes, depending on the project specifications. This is usually pretty simple, but, the perfectionists in both of us sometimes leads to planing of the wood to rid any imperfections. Then we sand, with THREE different grits of sand paper to make sure they’re smooth. Next comes the stain. We’re torn here … sometimes we love the richness of a deep espresso color die we mix with denatured alcohol, while other times we’re happy with our MINWAX espresso stain. Regardless, our standard signs are a deep color so that the white paint stand outs.
From there, I use a white chalk pencil to draw out the last name, word or saying on the board and will tweak it until it’s just right. My favorite paint is the white Elmer’s Paint Pen with a medium tip. Once the paint has dried, I go in with an eraser to make sure all of the chalk is cleaned up, and they’re ready to go.