Wednesday, April 27, 2011

DIY Vintage Sign Restoration ~

I felt so lucky to spy this old business sign at Flea Market Wednesday.. The wood has a absolutely gorgeous grey patina from years and years of being exposed to the outdoor elements...... Only a few speckles of black paint remained on it's surface... A faint outline of the original letters lightly graced the weathered wood...


A full 8 feet long, I wasn't sure it would fit it in my SUV... 
so I walked away...

A few minutes later, 
my heart fell into my stomach and I panicked...

I thought...

"Why didn't I buy that sign???"

"Hurry go back" 
I told myself!!

Since I was an early shopper this past week,
(the kids were on spring break)

my sign was still there!!

The seller refused to negotiate with me (grrrr...)
but I bought the sign anyway...


Love the soft driftwood color!!!


You can see a very faint outline of the original letters 
which had virtually no paint remaining....

It 's ghost appearance spelled out:

KINGS COUNTY ABSTRACT CO


A slight indent revealed that the letters were once pressed into the wood...

I knew I would want to paint the letters back onto the sign...


So I traced each letter's outline back onto the wood
with a regular lead pencil...

This gave me a foundation outline to repaint each letter...


I bought acrylic paint from Joann's Fabrics. 
It was called "stencil paint" and was about $2.00 for the bottle.





I painted the letters in pure black 
knowing that I would be sanding and distressing them back off...


Here's the sign 
before I distressed the paint...



I bought some sandpaper specifically made for paint removal... 



It was very coarse and did a great job at removing just the paint 
without scratching the wood all up!





I went over the letters till I removed just the right amount of paint. I could have gone a bit heavier and taken more off, but since I was going to hang the sign very high, I stopped while the letters were still somewhat dark.


The black edge shown above is the original paint....


I have high ceilings in my kitchen 
with some niche areas that were empty and undecorated. 

At 8 feet long, 
this sign was a "statement piece" 
big enough to fill the empty space...




I added my vintage tea tin 
which I purchased a while ago 
at Flea Market Wednesday....

and dropped in a (fake) ivy...



I also added 2 glass bottles to balance out the other corner...




For two years, I never knew what to put up there. I bought this sign because I loved it.  I never guessed this is where it would end up.... It just seemed to work out!  I love when that happens!

So glad to finally have that space decorated!

It was such an easy project,
I want to make another sign!


I hope you will consider following my blog 
with Google Friend Connect 
located at the top of the blog ~

Thanks for stopping by!!

Linking to the following parties:

61 comments:

Stephanie ~ Angelic Accents said...

How awesome that sign turned out! Hmmm, guess it's too big for me to slip into a suitcase if I ever came to visit.....

Big TX Hugs,
Stephanie
Angelic Accents

Patti said...

That turned out awesome. I just love it!

Prim Blessings,
Patti

Amy at WhisperWood Cottage said...

Fabulous!!

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Love it and you did a great job fixing it up!

Alison @ The Polohouse said...

Hi Marcy!
Just how much did you love making the sign?
You said you can't wait to make another?
OKay... I think you are going to need an order form on your blog.
Can I be your first order?!!
LOVE it. Turned out fantastic.
Perfect for your long niche up there.
Thanks for sharing your technique.
xx
Alison

Our really empty nest said...

ABsolutely LOVe it, perfect!!

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

Love it! And what a perfect place for it, I love the whole look! Martina

High Street Cottage said...

Marcy you did a great job, it looks wonderful! Are you sure it didn't have vinyl letters? It looks like it had vinyl letters that were removed, it's a very popular process been around since the early 80's. tami

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

Hi Marcy, The sign is fabulous! You did a great job bringing it back to life and it looks wonderful over your cabinets.
Thanks for joining my party.
Hugs,
Sherry

Terry said...

Perfect signage.

Angela said...

Really great!

Sarah said...

Awesome find, and your restoration of the lettering is equally awesome. Love its new home. Seems like the perfect spot! ~ Sarah

The Auction Queen said...

I think you sanded the paint down just right!! And it looks great above your cabinets... It is perfect there!!!

FRENCH LAUNDRY said...

Love love love it! Well done!

Judy

TheCrankyCrow said...

Oh!! I LOVE it!! I'm a huge fan of old signs - and I wouldn't have believed something like that could have been restored so wonderfully! And - wow! It looks PERFECT above your cabinets. It was meant to be there! Robin

Lori said...

Perfect place for the sign. Love how you faded it out.

awal.ny said...

How funny you had the walk away moment. I have learned to have that chat with myself as I am standing in front of the piece I am after, it has saved me a lot of wishing I had. I love the sign and how you brought it back to life, just perfect.

Stephanie said...

LOVE your sign Marcy! It looks perfect in that spot and the tin is awesome too!

Junker Newbie Stephanie said...

Love this! Just shared it on Twitter (even though you are never on there!) :-)

Lolo @ The Adventures of Stig and Lolo said...

That is so MarLo ;)
Love the way it turned out....good thing you are an early shopper!
:)
Hope you all had a great spring break. I am sooo ready for some hot weather. Hello, hot weather....where are you?!

Lolo OUT!

Hehehe.....

XOX

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

It was meant to be :)
I love it, so pretty and looks so well in that spot! Never heard of that sandpaper before, think I'll give it a try!
XO
Kristin

Robin said...

I just love old signs. So glad you were able to give it new life - it now looks amazing.

Debra@Common Ground said...

Just perfect for that spot. wow, you have a lot of space to fill!! Love that you repainted it and sanded it down. It looks original, thanks for linking up with VIF!!!
xoxo Debra

Olive Cooper said...

It's large and in charge and fits up there as if that's where it belonged the entire time! Love it.

A Cottage Muse said...

No buyers regret for you!
It looks awesome!

Kim Strother said...

No, there is no such thing as too much glitter in my book! But for a 16 yo, not so sure! Thanks for the sweet comment. So I've seen you talk about the wednesday flea market before, where is it! I'd love to go some time!
You did a great job with this sign and It is perfect in that spot. I love it when it's meant to be!

Little Leslie said...

What a great project. I love old signs. and, the sanding was perfect.

Junky Vagabond said...

My to-do list just got longer - need to make some signs!! You did a fabulous job on this :)

Found you through Stephanie at JunkerNewbie on her twitter page!

Jill @ JunkyVagabond

Suzanne@Meridian Road said...

That is a purely awesome sign! You did such a great job on the letters. They look like the original paint!

Babs said...

Marcy, You did a great job restoring the sign. It looks great in your vignette above the cabinets. I know about walking away from something at an antique/flea market.. been there.
Have a good weekend,
Babs

Sue said...

Way to fill that ledge, Marcy! I love how you painted out the original signage then sanded it out to look vintage. :-)

Auntie Bliss said...

It looks wonderful Marcy! You saved that spot for a reason after all :)

Diann said...

Great find in that sign! And your redo is wonderful. It looks great up on the ledge. Thanks for joining TTF. Have a geat weekend1

Susan @ homeroad.net said...

Awesome sign! You made a great choice going back for it. I would have also thought about it until I went back.
Susan

Meg said...

Oooh, that IS the perfect patina! So great! I love how your brought the words back to life! Great job!

Kathryn Michelle Jenkins said...

I LOVE these signs.so pretty and the colors are really great too.

I'm a new follower!
kathryn
www.thedragonsfairytail.blogspot.com

Butterscotch Caramel said...

I'm glad you bought the sign and re-did it. Great job. And it looks great where you put it in your home.
I am a new follower. Love your blog.

Laurie

Susan in SC said...

Love your sign. You did a great job!

Cheryl said...

Marcy,
I love what you did with this sign and how great it looks in your kitchen...so glad you went back for it. I just love signs...any shape, size, or message, as long as they are old and chippy. Just perfect!
Cheryl

Denise at PinkPostcard. said...

that is such a great piece! love the old vintage signs- and you did a great job with the paint. It fits perfectly in the spot you found for it. Thanks for sharing this at Transformations and Treasures!

oh yvonne said...

You kill me, Marcy! This sign restoration is just amazing! I love the spot you put it in, too.

You are just a born decorator girl,

Michelle said...

SO pretty! Love the way it came out! I am visiting from TT&J and new follower!!!
Michelle
www.delicateconstruction.blogspot.com
p.s. I am having a giveaway this weekend, you should come check it out!

~ ~ Ahrisha ~ ~ said...

The sign looks great. Aren't you glad that you went back and that it was still there? Of course I will follow you.

SweetSugarBelle said...

This is GREAT! What a find! So glad you got back in time!

Lauren said...

The sign looks great!

joetterer said...

great buy, no regrets! you restored it beautifully!

www.minnesotajunker.blogspot.com

Mary Ellen said...

Love this old sign!! It looks perfect up on your shelf too. Oh I am wishing I lived where we had more yard sales. WEnt to the only 2 our little town had today. Did find a fan Red Wing Vase for next to nothing. Had a chip under base but no one will see it and it is that great ironstone look!

Simply Bungalow said...

Love the sign. What a wonderful piece and the space looks great. It all goes together so perfectly.
~Heidi

angie @ the cellar door stories said...

cute ~ i like it!!

Heaven's Walk said...

Amazing how those vintage treasures call out to us when we turn away from them, huh? lol! That sign is sooo neat! And you did a great job with the stenciling and distressing. Thanks for the tip on the 3M special sandpaper. I'll definitely look for it the next time I'm out! :)

xoxo laurie

Lea the Lion said...

What a great sign!! And thanks for the sand paper tip! I had no idea they sold sand paper specifically for paint removal!!

Courtney ~ French Country Cottage said...

Love this- your sign is such a treasure and it is perfect for your spot!! Thanks for sharing at FNF :)

Ironstone and Pine said...

Just found your blog, love it! looking forward to following.......devon :)

LLH Designs said...

Geat job! And it's perfect up there! Meant to be!

xo,
Linsey

Lou Cinda @ Tattered Hydrangeas said...

Marcy, this looks fabulous! And the perfect spot for it! It looks perfectly aged....

Love it...

Lou Cinda

Kim @ Too Much Time said...

That sign is fabulous and I must find that sandpaper you used!

Maddie Kertay- The Domestic Anarchist said...

A divine sign to be sure!!! Makes me think of some aged fence wood we have that might have a little life left in it yet!

maddie

SJ @ Homemaker On A Dime said...

Hi, friend! I'm admiring all your creative posts here so can you please share them with us at the Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop? Hope to see you there at the party :)

Serendipity Chic Design said...

So glad you went back for it. The is one great piece of wood and the lettering and saying are so unique. The natural appeal goes perfect with your decor and I don't think you could have found anything better to fit that spot.

Thanks for linking to "Meet Me On Monday"....

Take care,
Lisa

Elizabeth (Blue Clear Sky) said...

Your sign looks great and aged perfectly. Funny enough today I posted a farmer's market sign I made. I would love to make a long sign for above the doorway in our living room.

Leslie Harris said...

I just stumbled on your blog and I love your sign. I'm in the process of distressing flower boxes for a french country theme luncheon and you've just inspired me with your colors. I'll let you know how it goes. I'm a new follower, if you get a chance stop by gwenmossblog.blogspot.com and check it out, Thanks!