This is a vintage style sign that can be made with products found at your local arts and crafts/ hobby store. It makes a great gift or filler for a bare wall in your home. This one was made into a key holder.
Step 1: Supplies
This list is not all inclusive but will get you most of the way there. Sorry in advance for the separate photos. I usually like to take one featuring all of the supplies, but I wasn't planning on making an instructable on this.
1. Precut or upcycled piece of wood. Mine is approx 6" x 21"
2. 220 grit sand paper.
3. Chalk paint. I used Americana Decor in the following colors: relic, romance, innocence, and a white, which I subsequently used all of and now don't know the name of. Sorry!
3. Paint brush
4. Stencils. I purchased the heart and wings stencil, but made my own for the lettering. If you plan on doing that, you will need an exacto knife, spray adhesive, cutting mat, and thin cardboard or acetate.
5. Blue masking tape
6. Stencil adhesive. Yes, you can attach stencils with the blue tape, but if you don't want to worry about the stencil moving, splurge on a good stencil adhesive. I use Stencil Ease
Step 2: Sand!
Even if you buy a precut piece of wood, it will need a light sanding. Good prep work makes for better painting, which makes for a better final product.
Step 3: Paint
To get the distressed look, I started with a base of two coats of the dark gray (relic), then, after taping off around the face of the wood, two coats of red (romance) on the edges, then two coats of white over everything.
Step 4: Sand Again
Start sanding lightly with the 220 grit sandpaper. You will quickly see that it doesn't take much to remove the layers of red and white to get to the gray and even the wood below. You will be sanding again, so don't take off too much now.
Step 5: Add Stencils
Follow the directions on the stencil adhesive and secure your stencil to the wood. Make sure the stencil is centered BEFORE you paint. Advice I didn't follow on this project :/ Also, invest in some cheap stencil brushes, and use very little paint on the brush when applying. Wipe the brushes on a rag after you load them with paint. If you don't, the paint will seep through the stencil edges and smear your project. Remove the stencil immediately following painting and, if store bought, clean with acetone to remove any stencil glue. Once stencils have dried, apply another coat of white.
Step 6: You Know What You Have to Do
Sand again. This will bring forward the stencils you covered with the white paint, but they won't be overpowering like they were before.
Step 7: More Stencils
Next, add your lettering. I went online and used a free font website to find a nice font to use. I made three separate stencils, one for each line of text. Make sure you measure your spacing, both vertically and horizontally before you start painting. I used innocence (light pink) for the lettering.
Step 8: Seal
I recommend a good, satin, polycrylic sealant. It comes in a spray or can be brushed on. Follow the instructions on whichever you choose. Just remember to keep your sandpaper handy! Good luck with your vintage sign.