The Smooch Sign

(I get no revenue from any products I mention. I simply mention products and stores to let you know where I got something and what it is.)

I love making a sign. And I seem to love making them the old fashioned way–painting them! Last year I painted this Christmas tree farm sign, and I just love it so much! It was a lot of work, but so worth it. The month before that, I did this sign, which goes above the window at my kitchen sink each holiday season. This year, after sighing and drooling all over Pinterest’s selection of yuletide bedroom decor, I decided to paint a sign for my bedroom.

First, I sketched out the word “mistletoe” in a fancy style. I just used pencil and sketchbook paper. I had to tape pieces of paper together to get the length of the lettering I needed for my canvas. I believe my canvas was 12″ by 36″.

Next, I used an Xacto knife to cut out the lettering, being careful not to completely detach the counter forms of letters.

Next, I prepared my blank canvas by mixing up some paint to give me a beautiful red finish. I didn’t purchase any paint for this project, but rather used what I had on hand, which is why I ended up using some fabric paint.

Now I was ready to paint the entire canvas red. After a good coat of paint, I used some white to blend in to give this base a more textured or rendered look.

I had to let the canvas dry overnight before using my paper stencil to paint the “mistletoe” lettering on. This was not as smooth as it could have been because my stencil was just sketchbook paper, not stencil plastic. I did spray a very light coating of adhesive onto the back of my paper stencil, to help keep it in place. Then I used a little sponge pouncer-type applicator to apply the white paint through the stencil. I knew the stenciling wouldn’t be perfect but that was okay because I do like to clean up the lettering with a paintbrush, which is what I definitely had to do until I was satisfied with the look of the sign.

Next up, I needed to get the words “MEET ME UNDER THE” very small at the top of the sign. I could have painted this on, but I realized I had purchased a used Sizzix die cut alphabet from a seller on eBay and I checked right away to see if the letters were the appropriate size, and they were! Woo hoo!

And ta-daah! Here is the finished sign, which I planned on hanging above my bed.

There are four square windows above my bed and I knew the sign would go in the center of this configuration but not cover any windows completely. My plan was to make little mistletoe wreaths (of course I saw some on Pinterest) to go in each of the end windows. I happened to have two small grapevine wreaths on hand, and plenty of kelly green felt. What I didn’t have was a lot of other shades of green and this was vital to give my little wreaths a more natural look. What I ended up doing was using my Sizzix die cutting machine to cut out lemon/lime shapes, which I then painted and trimmed to look like leaves. Sure, this was more labor-intensive than just heading to the store to get other shades of green felt, but I wasn’t sure if I’d even find the shades I needed. So I started mixing up some paint, and fabric paint was a good choice, as it remains flexible once dry. These painted felt shapes needed more dry time than I wanted (I can be impatient at times) but it was vital that I work with dry shapes to avoid getting my scissors and fingers coated in green paint.

To form the leaves, I simply pinched one end of the leaf then used a bit of hot glue to hold that in place. At first, I tried using floral stem wire to attach each leaf to the wreaths but realized it was going to take too much wire and too much time. So I simply attached the leaves onto the grapevine wreaths using more hot glue. I then added little white pom poms I had on hand.

When it came time to put the wreaths in the windows on either side of the mistletoe sign, I realized the scale was off. In other words, the little wreaths were too little. I needed to do something to remedy this and of course, I was unwilling to go buy bigger grapevine wreaths and go through the whole paint felt/dry felt/cut felt process again. So I had a little brainstorming session.

I decided to use more felt, in a flatter fashion to make the wreaths look bigger. It’s not a perfect solution but I think it works for my taste and my windows. I laid out a wreath on a green piece of felt and drew with a pencil some leaf shapes that basically outline the wreath but add a couple inches. I had one piece of a nice green felt that I wanted to use and it was not enough for both wreaths, so I cut it in half, and used half of it along with some kelly green felt for the base piece. Then I used scraps to cut more leaves and then placed them around in a way that I felt looked pleasing. I used my sewing machine and green thread to quickly attach the loose leaves to the leafy base. I then used thread to tack the new base to the grapevine leaves, as well as some hot glue. Here is the result.

I used 3M command hooks to attach the mistletoe sign to the woodwork in the very center of the windows, and used small command hooks to attach the wreaths right to the glass. And here is the finished look!

I am so pleased with how the mistletoe sign and the wreaths turned out! I do spend a lot of time looking at the pins I saved on Pinterest with these totally decked out holiday bedrooms. But I have to keep in mind how staged those rooms are, and I’m asking for trouble if I put an old fashioned sled at the foot of my bed along with steaming mugs of hot chocolate. My husband would break a leg and my white bedding would be destroyed! Instead, I had a little pencil-style Christmas tree near the large window (not shown) with just white lights. The cats would have treated ornaments on this tree as cat toys and I don’t want to get upset with them for being cats. I also put the three cone trees I made on one of my dressers atop a plain red dresser scarf, and a real planted pine tree plant. Oh and the two knit pillows that were super quick to knit up in bulky yarn. It was all just the right amount of Christmas cheer I needed in my room.

For next Christmas, I would like to make a simple quilt in traditional colors for my room. Stay tuned!

Thanks for stopping by to check out my projects! I hope you get some inspiration here!

Jenny

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