DIY Stencils for Rustic Signs. 

Dollar store finds into reusable stencils!

I wanted to try something a little different from our usual black transferred signs but I certainly don’t have a steady enough hand to paint without a guide (Where outline transfers come in handy) so I decided to try my hand at creating some affordable stencils.

Sure, you can purchase stencils online but most of the ones I see are kind of pricey and plus, if you make your own the options are limitless. (I’ll be working on a post of some of the cool stencils you can find around the web.)

DIY stencils for signs and other projects


What you need:

Start by printing the outline of the letters or designs you want to make stencils out of. You can print the whole letter, I just like to save printer toner.

Cut out each letter individually & into a thinner than 8×10 strip. You don’t have to be too diligent here but enough that the self adhesive pages have room around your letter to really grip. I did two letters per 8×10 adhesion page for the laundry letters and then cut one of the adhesive pages in half for my last letter.

Take the paper off the adhesive but try to keep flat. I opened mine across my cutting board so it didn’t start to stick to itself before I was ready.

Carefully and as flat as possible lay your printed letters face down on the sticky side of the laminating sheet. Close the sheet together.

You now have a sealed piece of paper! Nice work! 😉

Here comes the more difficult part. This will take patience, time, and some steady hands.

Carefully cut along the lines of the stencil with your craft exacto knife. PLEASE BE CAREFUL! These knives are extremely sharp and bending the blade too much can cause it to snap and break. Please also read the safety instructions on the packaging.

make your own stencils

Once you have your letters cut out your stencils are ready to use! You can tape these to your board or just hold them in place while you paint. Like any stencils you have to watch that globs of paint don’t get under the sides. You can paint with a brush, a sponge or even spray paint.

I’m super happy how my first attempt turned out.

We are working on a post on how to get the look of this board. 🙂

When I was painting the white I tried to do a bit of a dry brush method in places to let the paint shine through and then afterward I sanded some more of the white off.

Here’s our finished sign.


(I think I want a white washed one for our house so this one will be up for sale but we can also custom make these to order in any colour!)

Happy creating!

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