What are possibly the five best words a crafty gal can hear from her husband?? If you answered “Do you want any pallets?” then you are correct! While I didn’t actually hear my husband utter that lovely phrase, he did text it to me one day at lunch, and like a white-collared knight riding in a silver Nissan Titan pickup, he lovingly hauled not one but FOUR pallets home from work…and I fell in love with him all over again.
Who needs diamond or flower surprises when you can have free PALLETS?!? Ahhh, the simple joys of being married to a crafty DIYer….
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Ever since that day a few months ago, I’ve been gradually thinking of ideas to use up that precious (and free!) material. Some are in progress, others still reside only in this little brain of mine, but THIS project is now complete!
I turned a board into a decorative piece of home decor that will soon make a nice addition to a gallery wall. It’s a sign that displays our wedding anniversary in Roman numerals….a little different, but still classy and cool (I like to think I could be described in the same manner *wink*).
Oh, it’s also Silhouette Challenge time again! Wahoo! This month’s theme is Typography/Word Art, so keep reading to see 21 other awesome projects as well!
Pallet Wood Roman Numeral Anniversary Sign
- Pallet wood board
- Reciprocating saw & 12-inch blade
- Orbital hand sander & sanding disc
- Work gloves
- Stain, disposable gloves, & rag
- 2 foam brushes (one for stain; one for paint)
- Silhouette Cameo & 12″ x 24″ cutting mat
- Stencil film & transfer tape
- Metallic gold paint
- Spray sealer
Deconstructing the Pallet
Last weekend, we decided to give our very first pallet project a go since the weather had finally started to warm up….horray for springtime!
We selected the pallet out of the four that was the least beat up and then got to work deconstructing it. This pallet is actually being used for two separate projects at the moment: this anniversary sign as well as a pair of hanging book shelves for my son’s room (look for that post very soon!).
For this crafty adventure, I needed just over half of one of the narrow boards.
This was our first time ever working with pallets, and it was quite the learning experience, let me tell ya! We first cut off both ends (for our soon-to-be-installed bookshelves) with a reciprocating saw, which I definitely recommend for any pallet project! Get a longer blade too (we bought one that was specifically designed for nail-embedded wood)…..it’s worth the few extra bucks, for sure.
We then thought it would be pretty easy to pop the other boards off….wrong! Our hammering, crow-barring, and rubber-malleting did nothing but crack boards and cause us great frustration and some spousal bickering.
We ended up just using our saw again and cut straight through the pesky nails instead of trying to pry the boards off. SO. MUCH. EASIER.
Sanding the Wood
Once the pallet was fully deconstructed thanks to The Hubs’ manual labor, I got to work sanding all the pieces. I first used an orbital hand sander on all the flat parts I could reach with it, then smoothed up all the edges and inside areas by hand.
Oh, make sure you wear work gloves while working with pallets! If not, it will be Splinter City for sure!
Staining the Wood
The pallet wood is very dry and it soaked up the stain like crazy….this sign and both bookshelves ended up using this entire 8 oz. can! I then let it dry overnight.
Creating My Mockup
Now that my board was ready, I created my mockup in Silhouette Studio in order to cut my stencil out with my Silhouette Cameo.
Our wedding anniversary is August 8, 2008 (or 08.08.08 to make it easy to remember!), so in Roman numerals, that’s VIII.VIII.MMVIII….I definitely had to double check myself to make sure my memory from middle school was correct!
I decided to just stick with the classic Times New Roman font for this too….and how appropriate for Roman numerals, amiright?
Cutting the Stencil
I first thought about using some gold vinyl and applying the Roman numerals that way. However, I wanted the sign to look more rustic and weathered, so I ended up creating a stencil and painting the numerals on instead.
I’ve used vinyl as a stencil many, many times before (like here, here, here, and here) and it works great. For Christmas, however, I received some Oramask 813 stencil film which is specifically designed for projects like this, so I decided to test it out here….it’s more cost-effective than vinyl, too!
Oramask 813 Stencil Film Silhouette Cut Settings- A test cut revealed that the following settings were perfect for this material:
- Blade: 1
- Speed: 5
- Thickness: 10
- Cutting Mat: Checked
Applying the Stencil
Once my design was cut, I then weeded (or removed) the excess film, slapped some transfer tape over top, then applied the stencil to my board using the hinge method (you can read more about this method here).
The 813 film is much thinner than vinyl (helloooo, that’s why it’s a film!), and it took a little patience in order to get it to release from the transfer tape and stick to the wood. Also, since this is a piece of pallet wood and not fresh-from-Home-Depot lumber, it wasn’t totally smooth and of course had some ridges, and the film didn’t stick perfectly in all places.
However, once again, that was okay for this project since I was going for a weathered, aged look, so if some of the paint bled under the stencil, that was fine by me…..just more character!
Applying the Paint
I then used a foam brush and lightly dabbed on some metallic gold craft paint over the stencil. I made sure to only use a straight-up-and-down motion to avoid pulling the stencil off the wood and/or smearing the paint.
Since the film is thinner and less sticky than vinyl, it removed super easily from the wood. I’ll definitely be using this for future stenciling projects, especially those with painted wood and the PVPP method!
Roughing It Up a Bit
To add a little more weatheredness to the sign, I grabbed some sand paper again and lightly roughed up the numerals just a tad. I then wiped off the dust and gave the board a quick coating of some spray sealer.
My Completed Pallet Wood Roman Numeral Anniversary Sign!
And here it is! I love how this sign commemorates our wedding anniversary in a unique and non-traditional way. You kinda have to spend a little time looking at it to decipher the meaning, and then most people will still be unsure what the numbers signify. I like quirky.
Also, my husband really likes this sign too because it “looks like wood from a pirate ship!” Yeah, I guess that’s pretty cool too. ;)
For now, the sign rests on our fireplace mantel, but we’re looking to move sometime this year, so this will make the perfect addition to a future gallery wall. I can’t wait to display it alongside lots of our wedding photos and other pics from our life together…. Ahhh, I just love personalized decor!
Silhouette Challenge Time!
Like I mentioned, it’s Silhouette Challenge time again! Wahoo! Be sure and check out these 21 other amazing projects for some great inspiration on how to incorporate typography/word art into your next Silhouette project!
1. My Paper Craze // 2. The Stamp Doc // 3. Peanut Life Adventures // 4. Creative Ramblings // 5. Pitter and Glink // 6. The Thinking Closet // 7. Single Yet Married Mom // 8. unOriginalMom // 9. Sisters, What! // 10. Where The Smiles Have Been // 11. From Whine to Whine // 12. Adventures in All Things Food // 13. Practically Functional // 14. Patina Paradise // 15. Please Excuse My Craftermath… // 16. Weekend Craft // 17. Two Purple Couches // 18. Ribbons & Glue // 19. TitiCrafty // 20. Simply Kelly Designs // 21. Confessions of an Overworked Mom // 22. Get Silvered
Thanks so much for stopping by!