Wedding Gift: Wood Name Plaque

We have friends who just got married in Vegas.  Congratulations Tim and Bradi!  So since I have been on a kick to make my gifts more heartfelt and personal, I thought I would make part of our gift to them.

What do you think?  I like how it turned out!

I see a lot of you mamas refinishing furniture, and I thought I’d try my hand at a little woodwork. I found the perfect-sized sign at Hobby Lobby in sad shape. Not only was it on the half off sale, but I talked them into an extra 10% off for the dings. I knew I’d be painting over it anyway. Add some heavy duty chipboard letters (also on sale), and some spray primer, and the project was right around $10. Easy on the budget is always good!

First order of business was to adhere the letters with some Amazing E-6000 and lose the pink. (Yep, it was pink when I started, and said, wish upon a star. There you have it, secret hidden message.)   I primed it with a spray primer.

Then the dilemma. I finally settled on painting it a sage green. I know I’m taking a risk, because honestly I don’t know what colors they favor. But at least I broke out of my rut, and didn’t make it brown, like I do everything else. I really hope you like green, guys…

So I gave it a good two coats of green acrylic, and then tried to figure out how I was going to give it more character.

This part took me a very long time.  I am inept at paint.

I believe the technical term for what I did next was to use a “float” of black paint. But I suppose that all depends on whether I actually did it correctly. :P  What I did was watered down a bit of black acrylic, and brushed it on here and there to add a little depth. If it started looking awful, I covered it back over with green, then tried again. I finally got a nice subtle shading on some of the letters.

Then I busted out the sandpaper and distressed it a little. I have never done this before. But I really like the effect! The wood tones underneath really complement the colors, I think.

Then I just sprayed the whole thing down with a clear matte topcoat to protect it!  It all sounds pretty simple, but since drying time takes forever in between, and I didn’t master my paint job right away, this ended up taking me three nights to finish up. Someone who knows what they’re doing could probably do it a lot more quickly.

Ultimately – mission accomplished.  Though it remains to be seen whether I’ll be feeling well enough today to go to the reception, or if my husband will get to deliver our gift solo. But still, I have something I’m proud to give, and it’s more personal than buying something off a registry.  What sorts of personal gifts you you creative mamas like to give?

I link to these fabulous parties!


  1. Kim-A Creative Spirit says

    Thanks SOOOOOO much for following…. I am here to return the favor. LOVE the design of your blog… Bright and cheerful.

    And I love the name plaque you created. I am sure your friends will LOVE it….

    Don't forget to stop by A Creative Spirit often as every comment gets an entry in the monthly drawing for a $50 gift card. WOO HOO

  2. Melanie says

    Love the post Adrianne- I have a wedding in a few weeks and was trying to come up with something for the newlyweds– this is a great idea!!


  3. Anjie says

    That sign is so very nice and I'm sure your friends will adore it!

    Thanks so much for following. I'm returning the favor as well!

  4. says

    I really like that. Great idea to buy the dinged up, already painted signs. I'm going to pay more attention to those things. :) Hope you're feeling better soon.

  5. says

    I really love how this turned out and I think I'm going to try and knock it off. Lord knows I have plenty of scrap wood the hubby has been trying to get rid of for a while. All I need are the letters and I could replace my tired sign in the kitchen. Thanks for the inspiration. I love how it turned out!

    Bernadette @b3hd

  6. Sarah Gill says

    The sign is beautiful, would look lovely hung in front of a mirror.
    Following you now!

  7. DHidey says

    Great DIY! And I love the tip about shopping for gently used things at Hobby Lobby!
    New follower from the Hop–

    Thanks for checking me out too!! I appreciate it!

  8. Mindie Hilton says

    I would be thrilled to get that as a gift, with my name on it though, duh. Thank you for sharing.
    Hugs from Bacon Time.

  9. Sarah says

    That is a wonderful gift! I think the handmade personalized gifts for a wedding are the most special. I have made little plaques with the last time and the year they were “established” for a few different weddings and I've seen them all hanging in their homes after the wedding.

    Found you at Hookin up with HOH.

  10. Lindsay says

    I think these type of gifts are the best. It shows that you actually took the time to think of them to make it. Thanks for linking up at Show & Share! I appreciate the support!

  11. Amanda says

    Love this! The possibilities are endless for different looks for this project! Hmmm…may have to try this!!

  12. Catch A Falling Star says

    It turned out very nice!
    At first I thought it was stone or concrete.
    I really love the color you used…beautiful!

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