Here's the behind the scenes on how I put it together -
I had my husband build the base out of 3 pieces of old fence wood slats we had in the garage. He screwed two pieces of wood across the top and bottom of the back of the slats to hold everything together. The base measures 21″ long by 17″ wide. Don’t mind the paint on the back, I was testing 2 different techniques before I started painting :)
If you don’t have old fence slats laying around, you could change the design a bit and use pine boards (I believe Home Depot will even cut them for you!). You wouldn’t get the same rough effect, but it would work just as well.
Cut the saying first on card stock, then cut a 2nd saying on vinyl to create a stencil. Mine was 11.13″ tall and 8.75″ wide. Incidentally, I bought the vinyl from Hobby Lobby – it’s their Paper Studio brand. Worked like a charm in my Silhouette! Since I hadn’t used vinyl before, I did a quick Google search for ‘how to cut vinyl on the Silhouette’; I watched a quick video and it was super easy to do.
Use the cardstock negative as a template for placing the vinyl stencil on the wood surface. Since most of the stencil is in a single piece, I found this was a much easier process when I had a helper to help keep the stencil from curling and to help place it without it tearing. Using the cardstock negative template makes it very easy to get the correct placement of letters.
Use a bone folder to smooth out any bubbles in the vinyl so paint doesn’t bleed underneath the stencil. Meet my helper – my 13 year old son, Sam :)
Dry brush over the vinyl stencil lightly with a foam paintbrush and cream acrylic paint (brushing with the grain of the wood); work quickly. If necessary, use a corner of the foam brush to apply paint in small cracks and crevices.
Remove the vinyl stencil immediately after painting, this will prevent a seal from developing when the paint dries and should eliminate and peeling of paint when you remove. In a few cases, I gently tore the vinyl stencil into smaller sections in order to make it easier to remove. I even used an Xacto knife in a few places to help lift the stencil from the wood.
No matter how careful I was when I painting, I had a few areas where the paint bled under the stencil. In these areas, I used a paper piercer to lightly scratch away/’clean up’ paint from where it shouldn’t be.
I used burlap and twine to create the banner – all materials were purchased from Hobby Lobby.
I started by folding a piece of burlap in half, then cut three half circles (about 5″ wide at the top) with pinking shears. I then folded each circle over a long piece of twine and adhered it with Tiny Attacher staples along the top of the half circle. I tied 4 brushed gold jingle bells (bells are about 1″ wide” – the container says 25mm) to 4 silver snowflakes, then tied each bell/snowflake to the banner.
Next I cut thin strips of red and cream chevron fabric with pinking shears and tied to the banner.
When the banner was done, I laid it on top of the wood base, figured out where I wanted the banner to hang and then hammered a nail in each corner. I left about 1/3″ of the nail sticking out and then wrapped the twine end around the nail a few times and tied a knot. I left the long ‘tail’ of the twine attached.
For the last step, I wrapped the outside edges of the wood base with red and white chevron Washi tape to add a bit more color. NOTE: after a few hours, the washi tape peeled away from the wood. I solved that by using a staple gun to staple the washi tape & voila - fixed!
I loved putting this project together, it was so much fun! Happy to say it's already up on the wall, ready for the holidays. And yes, I'll admit - the rest of our Christmas decorations are out as well. Since last weekend...