Make These Fun Sport Themed Letters For Your Children!
This is a DIY for 12" (or whatever size you purchase) letters painted with different sports. I've provided the .studio3 (Silhouette Cameo File) for download, or you can purchase the ready to use stencils in my shop.
These letters are fun for a kids room, or even a basement bar. You can purchase these exact wood letters at the places I've provided in the supplies list, or you could buy any sized letter you find at a craft store.
I'm happy to answer any questions you have as you work on your project, just contact me here or through my blog/facebook @ She's Crafty LLC
12" Wooden Letter - can be purchased at my shop or at your local JoAnn's store. You can find them online at amazon as well. Or you can find similar letters at any local craft store, and I believe even Walmart & Target as well. The steps would be the same and the stencils should work if it's a similar size. I'm happy to change the size of the stencils for you as well if needed.
Paint - You can get acrylic paint at any craft store or online.
Sealer - Something like Mod Podge in a matte finish.
Painting Tools - Paint rollers, brushes, wedge sponges
Stencils (or freehand it) - You can purchase stencils from me here, or you may find some at craft stores. You could also freehand the details.
Hanger - I usually use 3M Command Strips to hang my letters, but you could also use a sawtooth hanger on the back.
Step 1: Paint the Base Color
First you may want to sand the letters down if you like a smoother finish. You don't HAVE to do this step, but I always do.
SAND DOWN LETTER if desired
PAINT LETTER the base color needed, so orange for basketball, black for basketball hoop, brown for football, white for baseball, etc. You'll probably need at least two coats, maybe three. I use a small 4" roller for doors/cabinets on mine, but a paint brush or foam wedge would work as well. Allow to dry well before adding stencils.
Football w/Field - Part green, part brown. Look at the stencil to decided how you want to lay it out on the letter before you figure out what part to paint green and what part to paint brown.
Football - Paint the whole letter brown (sometimes there is a small part that the football doesn't cover. I usually paint that part green.
Baseball - White background
Baseball Bat - Paint part green, part tan (sand/dirt), and a white line between the two to look like a baseball field.
Soccer - White background
Basketball - Orange background
Basketball Net - Black background
Tennis - Greenish/Yellow tennis ball color background.
Step 2: Add Stencils (or Freehand the Details)
I have provided the .studio3 file for download if you own a Silhouette Cameo or Portrait you can cut these files. If you don't and would like to purchase stencils, you can do so in my shop.
Once the base coats are nice and dry (at least two hours suggested) you can add the stencils and start painting again. Some letters may require two different stencils in two different steps, always do the background stencil first and then once that is dry, do the second stencils (for example, lines on football field first, football over the top of that).
I am working on a video to show the stencil process, but for now here are some photos.
Applying the stencil - first figure out how you want to place the stencil on there, once you know the way you want it to go, remove the paper backing. Flip the stencil over and gently roll the paper background off. Once that is removed, carefully place the stencil in place and use something flat like a credit card to smooth it into place.
You can stencil application in the video here until I've had a chance to make the sports letter video:
Once the stencil is applied, add the paint with a dabbing sponge or brush for smaller details or a roller for larger. I usually roll on the black for the soccer ball since it's only the two colors. For stencils like the football, I use brushes to fill in the little detail areas.
Football: Darker brown for the lines, white for the big stripes (that will be outlined in the darker line), then I freehand the 'strings' in the center. The stencil does have those in places, but I personally free hand it to make it more realistic.
Football Field: Paint white for the lines/numbers
Basketball: Paint the lines black
Basketball Net: Paint the rim red, the net white and the basketball orange
Baseball: paint the thread red and then I put a gray line down the middle to make it look like some space between material where the ball is sewn together.
Baseball Bat: I start with a tan for the main bat color, then once that is dry lay on the 'grain' and paint it slightly darker than the main bat color. Once that is dry, remove the grain stencil and apply the play ball logo stencil and paint that black.
Soccer: Paint all exposed parts black
Tennis: Paint all exposed parts white
Step 3: Freehand Some Little Details
I like to add simple little details to give it a little more realistic feel. I just freehand them with paint brushes. To make the dots on the football and basketball I actually cut the tip off a Q-tip and use the round stick to dip into paint and then onto the letter to make the circle shape.
THE LITTLE DETAILS
Football - add little dots in a slightly different brown than the main color to give it a textured feel.
Basketball - add little dots in a slightly different orange than the main color to give it a textured feel.
Baseball - add little light gray rings around the lace holes. You could also go along the red strings with a thin line to give it a more three dimensional feel.
Tennis - use a sponge to add a slightly different shade of green/yellow to make it look kinda fuzzy.
Step 4: Seal With Mod Podge
If you used craft acrylic paint, I would add a clear coat like Mod Podge to your letters. I like the matte finish personally.
HANGING: You can add sawtooth hangers to the back, or use 3M Command Strips to hang them.
Let me know if you have any questions or want to see a design for a sport not shown. I'm happy to add more stencils to my collection as the demand comes.
Thanks and good luck with your letters!