Hand Lettered DIY Wood Sign Video Tutorial

Hello, Making in the Mountains readers! I’m LZ from The Summery Umbrella, and I was so excited when Kristi asked me to share this gorgeous Hand Lettered DIY Wood Sign Video Tutorial with you. PLUS… there’s a free SVG file included so you can make your very own too! I don’t know about you, but I definitely love free stuff!

Just in case you’ve never stopped by my neck of the woods (aka. my blog) I love to share my three favorite things: DIY, Design, and Decor projects. You’ll find everything from farmhouse style signs in my shop to DIY coffee stations to hand drawn vectors for all of your crafting needs.

With that being said, a few months ago I decided to share my knowledge, tips, and tricks that I’ve learned over the past 5+ years (from my own shop) about sign making in an upcoming eBook I’m writing called The Ultimate Guide to Making your Own Signs. It’ll include 30+ techniques, suggested materials, tutorials, videos, and countless other handy tips to help you create the best looking signs for your own home!

Now, let’s get started!


1/2″ cabinet grade plywood (10” tall x 18” wide)

9″ Foam Paint Roller Cover

Satin White Interior Paint

Silhouette CAMEO and Mat

SVG File


Transfer Tape

Squeegee (or even a credit card)

Black Spray Paint (or Airbrush and Lacquer Paint)

2 – 1×2 @ 18″ (top frame pieces)

2 – 1×2 @ 11 1/2″ (side frame pieces)

Stain (a weathered gray is always a great choice!)

Brad Nail Gun


Hand Lettered DIY Wood Sign Video Tutorial PLUS Free SVG File!


  1. In this video I did not cut my sign immediately down to size because I typically keep a large quantity of similar sizes on hand at all times due to this being a very common size in my shop. However, I would highly suggest to go ahead and cut yours to make it easier in the long run.
  2. Regardless what type of wood you will be using it is always essential to clean it off prior to painting. This will not only get rid of any loose dirt and splinters, but will also provide a smoother surface to work with. All you need to do is clean it off with a brush, and sometimes even with a damp paper towel.
  3. My preferred method for painting my signs is with a 9” foam paint roller cover. The key to success in this step is to use multiple, light coats. Typically I like to wait one hour between each coat, and usually only need two. However, use your own discretion.
  4. Within each coat (after each has thoroughly dried) I like to take 220-grit sandpaper, and very gently remove any bumps that you may see.
  5. After you have finished painting and sanding it is best to let your sign “cure” for a week. I’ve found that (especially if you’re using vinyl stencils) you will have less pulled-off-paint issues.
  6. The key to using any stencil is all about the application. It’s extremely important that you do not apply too much paint, or it will go underneath your stencil creating a less than perfect design. Remember, always use several, light layers.
  7. Using your Silhouette CAMEO cut out the template for this project with the vinyl on your mat.
  8. Remove the vinyl from your mat, and apply your transfer tape.
  9. Now, remove the backing from your vinyl, and carefully take out the vinyl pieces of your design that you will be painting.
  10. Once you have removed all your vinyl pieces it is now time to apply to your prepped sign board. Line up your vinyl with your board so it will be applied evenly, and using your squeegee firmly push it down.
  11. Next, slowly remove your transfer tape so that only your vinyl is on your board.
  12. In a ventilated area, evenly apply a light coat of spray paint (or lacquer paint) to your vinyl. Allow it to dry and then apply your next. Repeat this step until your desired color has been achieved.
  13. Once your paint has completely dried remove your vinyl. TIP: If you’re having a hard time pulling up small pieces of the vinyl Silhouette does offer a handy tool kit for removing vinyl.
  14. Touch up any areas with paint that need your attention.
  15. Stain your frame wood pieces in the color of your choice and let them dry.
  16. Then, frame it up! With your nail gun add your top two pieces first and then the sides.

Thanks again for having me Kristi, and I hope everyone enjoyed the tutorial!! Please feel free to ask questions here, send me an email (LZ@thesummeryumbrella.com), or drop by my page for more info. I’m always looking for ways to help 🙂

Have a wonderful week!

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And don’t forget to check out this BRILLIANT new book … The Ultimate Guide to Making your Own Signs!

The Ultimate Guide to Making your Own Signs

Happy Notes copy    

29 thoughts on “Hand Lettered DIY Wood Sign Video Tutorial

  1. Great sign and great saying! Feel like I need to plaster that message everywhere to help me say “no” a little bit more! 😉 Visiting from Show + Tell party.

  2. I’ve been thinking of using an air brush as well for my diy signs. My son in law is a taxidermist. What kind of Air brush do u recommend?

    Love your signs!

    Karen 😊

  3. This svg could use some cleaning up. There are several letters that don’t have the insides cleaned up. I really love the design though.

  4. Just to clarify, I should keep the vinyl on the wood to dry for up to a wrrk after painting? I have had issues of wood splintering when I go to take the vinyl stencil off.

    1. Hi there I make diy signs at home with an airbrush too. I’m just wondering what brand airbrush paint you use. I’m having a hard time with mine and then I heard you can use acrylic and dilute it but can’t get that right. I make signs like the farmhouse style but also ones with multiple colors.
      Thanks Rebecca

I can't wait to hear your thoughts?