There’s no getting around it – wedding costs add up. All of the little things – votives, menus, signage, candles – build into a crazy decor monster that you’ll never be able to use again.
Even on the resale sites, wedding signs cost about $15-$50 each. To use one time! I absolutely refused to spend that amount of money on anything so small for my wedding, which is where my DIY day came in. I decided to shop around and buy blank wood surfaces on which I could stencil my custom signage instead.
For a wedding of our size (way bigger than we expected) at a venue like ours (essentially, a gigantic field), it’s definitely necessary to have signage to show people where to go. Plus, cute rustic signs are so trendy right now, and so easy to make! I did my buying before I did my planning, so it took me a bit to go through and decide what wording I wanted to include where.
– Craft Wood Signs (I got mine at Michael’s)
– Small letter stencils (I used Martha Stewart’s Typewriter Font)
– Large Letter Stencils (got mine at Lowe’s)
– Stencil Dauber Set (Also Martha’s)
– Craft Paint
If you’ve never stenciled before – never fear. I’ve made a lot of stenciling mistakes in my life, so trust me when I say that masking tape and dauber pens are your best friends.
It’s a pain, and sometimes I skip this step if I’m feeling confident, but I cut out and tape each stencil, one by one as I go along. I usually get a tiny dollop of paint on my dauber pen, wipe off the excess, and dab at the stencil (quick up and down motions) to fill in the stencil. That way, the stencil doesn’t move while you’re working and excess paint doesn’t slip underneath creating a smudge!
See the “e” above, in games? Didn’t wipe excess paint off my dauber. Its not a huge deal, but I’ll always notice it now. LESS IS MORE!
I started with the smaller signs to get myself warmed up – and because, in case I messed up, some of these weren’t totally necessary.
The big ones, however, required a litttttle more work and concentration.
For our guestbook, we’re putting out a galvanized metal bucket, manila tags, and flare pens, and inviting our guests to add items to our “bucket list.” Naturally, I wanted my sign to include a bucket! Have you ever drawn a bucket? In all likelihood, no. I ran a quick google search and then got to work on blank computer paper copying the bucket picture I liked to the best of my ability.
Since computer paper isn’t transparent and I’m a millennial so I wouldn’t even know where to begin with carbon paper, I got resourceful to copy the bucket shape onto the wood. Using my trusty masking tape, I attached the bucket photo where I wanted it onto the wood plaque and used a cardboard cutter to carve a tiny outline through the paper into the wood.
I then traced over it with the paint using a small paintbrush and a foam wedge. Voila!
4 hours later, and I’ve got all of the signs I need for my wedding, at 1/3 of the price!
Moral of the story – don’t be intimidated by tiny stencils and large quantity work! Just pop on some music, grab some tape and a dauber, and get to work. Your wedding will be all the cheaper for it!