Monday, June 18, 2012

Let the Sun Shine In- wall plaque DIY

I wanted something summery for my room, so I got the idea to make a wooden wall plaque with a fun summer quote. I chose "Let the sun shine in," from the 1969 musical Hair. Yeah, I'm kind of a hippie.

First thing you need to do is get a plaque and measure it. Open a program on your computer that's capable of text editing. I used Adobe Illustrator but if you only have Microsoft word, that will probably work too. Make sure you open a document the size of your plaque so your words don't get cut off. Arrange your text the way you want it and print it out. Trim the paper as close as you can to the text.

When you have your text where you want it on your plaque, tape it to the wood on one side, like a little hinge. Slide graphite/carbon paper, face down, under your quote, and trace each letter. I did mine on an oval but it was a little heard to gauge whether or not my words were straight. If you use a square or rectangle, I think it would be easier because you can line it up with the sides.

Now all you have to do is paint it. I used Martha Stewart craft paint. It's really great because it's thick and works on all surfaces. I recommend using a small round or flat brush. If you go outside the lines here and there, that's ok. You can touch it up. Just mix a teeny amount of brown in some white to make a tan color to match the wood. I'll admit, I did this. Once the paint is dry, use a staple gun to attach ribbons to the back.
The really great thing about paint is that you can change it if it's not to your liking. At first I painted "SUN" red and all the other colors orange, but I wasn't completely happy with it. So I mixed the colors and painted over the orange after it dried on a few words. Now it has a nice ombre effect. ;)
here it is hanging above my bed, with a pattern I made in silkscreen class, some Instax pictures of my cats, and a mailer from artist Ben P Norton.

Anyone want to make one? What quote will you use?


  1. It's such a simple thing, but it really makes you smile. =D

  2. So simple! What a great idea(:!

  3. After moving into our dream home, my husband finally got his man cave. He decided to go with a rustic theme design to go with our craftsman style home. We were searching the web for a company that did custom wood signs to put up the room and finally we came across Unique Custom Products. They had great pictures of other designs they had done and we decided to order. The sign that arrived was absolutely beautiful! The wood was really good quality and the engraving was flawless - it fit in well with his theme. Check them out at