I fell asleep while Lisa was decorating the Christmas tree and woke up in a Christmas collar!
She's bonkers about decorating for the holidays.
In the décor world, an odd number of decorations is usually more visually pleasing than even numbers which is why my two little Christmas dogs looked a little sad and lonely. I wanted to make a DIY vertical Christmas sign to fill that visual void but I don’t have big stencils to paint it or fancy die cutting machine to use vinyl letters. Instead I used my crafty BFF Mod Podge to make a weather resistant outdoor decoration.
Yes! You can use Mod Podge on outdoor decorating projects and it will brave the elements – as long as you use the right formula. Keep reading and I’ll tell you how!
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You will need:
Plywood (13 1/2 inches wide by 35 1/2 inches tall) – I recommend using a thicker piece of wood than what I used in this tutorial, especially if you are going to cut it with a hole saw. The only reason I used the piece of thin wood shown in this tutorial is it was leftover from making wood wire shelf liners.
1 inch Hole Saw like this one
Lime green spray paint – this is the exact bright green color spray paint plus primer I used
White card stock
Mod Podge Outdoor
Scrap printer paper – I keep botched print jobs, that stupid extra sheet of blank paper, or tiny printed bit on a new sheet with useless info, etc. in a basket by my printer to use for low waste test prints.
Computer and a word processing program – This is the word processing program I use and recommend
Color laser printer - Mod Podge will smear ink jet printed images although some people say they get around that by putting the printed image in the freezer first. I personally haven’t tried it and recommend doing a test first.
1. Clamp the plywood to a sturdy workbench and use the hole saw and drill to cut a half circle in each corner of the plywood board.
Caution: Please use caution when cutting wood with the hole saw. Go slow and let the saw do the work otherwise the saw has tendency to catch and jump from the area you are cutting. You can use a jigsaw to make the detailed cuts if you are more comfortable using a jigsaw than a hole saw. Safety first!
2. Sand the top and edges of the plywood with the sandpaper until it is smooth.
3. Use the spray paint plus primer to paint the sanded plywood bright green. I used two coats of spray paint. I let the paint dry overnight in between coats.
4. Use the computer, word processing program, and color lase printer, to print the word NOEL (or the phrase you prefer.) Here’s how I did it:
- I chose a font that was wide, pretty, and fairly easy to cut out by hand with scissors. Bodoni MT Black fit the bill nicely.
- I used Word to change the font color to white and outline the letters in a 6 point red outline.
- I loaded scrap paper into my printer and started experimenting with font sizes and test prints to make the largest size letters that will fit on my sign.
- I printed the word NOEL using 600 point Bodoni MT Black on white card stock with a red outline.
6. Use the paintbrush to apply Mod Podge Outdoor to the back of each printed letter and glue them to the plywood sign. Use the brayer to smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles in the paper letters as needed. Allow the Mod Podge to dry. I let mine dry overnight.
7. Use the paintbrush to apply a coat of Mod Podge Outdoor to seal the paper letters on your sign and allow the Mod Podge to completely dry before displaying.
8. Decorate and celebrate!
If you'd rather buy than DIY, check out the following decoration ideas - and more! below!
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