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Honour the Child

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BTRT Patterns (on Etsy)

Sunday, 2 February 2014
I promised a tutorial on the painted signs I posted a little while ago.
I have been busy getting ready to launch our KICKSTARTER campaign... more on that soon!
But on this snowy, cold afternoon I am sitting down with a hot coffee, and getting this done!

Setting out to make a sign for our school room, it seemed appropriate to learn some new skills.
And with the help of Pinterest that is just what happened!

It started with a little dump diving (you can read about that here).
{{Funny story~ we are cleaning our house to move, and with great regret I sent 2 boxes of musty old books to the dump on Saturday.  Not 30 minutes later, Michelle, my dump diving buddy, texts me about the great box of books her husband snagged at the dump!}}
But in fact, the 'Learn Something New Every Day' and the 'Have Big Dreams' signs were made from a pine shelf I snagged at the hardware store for under $10.

Looking back, I realize that almost everything that was done on the 'Learn Something New' sign came directly from this blog: Inspired by Charm. So I am not going to re-invent the wheel, but rather give credit where it is due!

To distress the wood I used a hammer, a fork (great for little wormholes), a screwdriver and the very best tool was a spline I had on hand from a recent screen installation.  Rowan joined in and we beat the board up real good. We followed the beating with the application of balsamic vinegar with steel wool, working the vinegar into the fresh marks we made in the wood.  I set it in the sun to dry out between vinegar applications.  The balsamic vinegar is a little sticky and will leave a sticky residue, even when dry. I lightly sanded this away before beginning to paint.
The instructions for doing the letters included in the blog post linked above are brilliant!
Worked like a charm and I have used the technique several more times since.

Our "Learn Something New" sign has pride of place in our school room and keeps us inspired when the going gets tough!

I have also have a few pictures from our dump run...
We scored some really interesting old wooden cupboard doors.
 Using a wire brush and then some sandpaper, we were able to remove much of the old chipped paint from the doors. 
Using a Dremel, we shined up the rusty hardware a little bit.
And we even braved the circular saw (in flip flops and sunglasses... thank goodness our children were not around to see our lack of safety precautions!) to even out one of the doors.
Can you spot the piece of wood above that became this finished painting?
 So if you have a hankering to go to the dump and find some old wood ~ let it inspire your creativity!
You will want to round up:
~ balsamic vinegar, rag and steel wool
~ chain, fork, hammer and other implements to distress your wood (if using new wood or adding more character)
~sandpaper, wire brush, Dremel for cleaning metal bits
~acrylic paints and water to make washes
~brushes and sponges
~ruler, pencil, paper, tape
~ print out your words in the desired size and font.
~ a good friend to make you look like you know what you are doing AND you are supposed to be there when you go to the dump (also good for watching for bears!)

We chose not to use any old pallet wood~ be careful when doing so. Often pallets are on ships, sprayed with chemicals (ie pesticides if they are holding fruit) and otherwise treated with nasty stuff that the wood absorbs and you don't want in your home!

So, this wasn't much of a tutorial, but at least I hooked you up with some great instructions!♥♥


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