Pallets are good to make all sorts of things, and something that I have been wanting to try my hand at is painting art on pallets formed into a sign. It’s a bit of work at first: get the right boards, decide what size you want your sign to be, cut the boards, sand the boards, then attach them. I used a 1X2 cut just shy of the width of the sign and screwed into the back of the 1X2 so all of the boards would be attached. Just make sure your screws aren’t so long they poke out the front. I did 2- 1X2’s on each sign.
Once your sign is made the fun can begin!
I started Ironman by finding a picture similar to the one I wanted to paint. (I am much better at painting than I am at free-hand drawing) I painted the red background onto the whole sign. Make sure to get into all of the grooves, because when you distress the sign it will take paint off of the high points and leave it in the low points. For the paint on this project I used acrylic. I chose acrylic because it is easy to work with, washable, and I am going to finish it with a waterproof stain.
Once the base color was dry, I penciled in my drawing. I traced a lot of the picture by coloring the back with a lead pencil, then tracing firmly on the top of the picture where I wanted the lines to appear. Once my lines were in, I began painting. Once again, I was sure to get the paint in all the low points of the wood. I let my paint dry overnight.
The next day, with a fine grit sandpaper, I lightly sanded over the painting. Once I saw how the paint responded to the sandpaper, I adjusted the firmness according to how I wanted it to look. Since I was going to use a stain over the painting to help distress it, I focused on removing pain from the high points of the wood, especially the edges.
After wiping off the dust, I was ready to stain. I used a relatively dark mahogany gel stain for this project. I brushed it on and wiped it off. After I had done the whole painting, I went over it in places where I wanted it to appear a little darker, and wiped it with a light touch to keep some of the stain on the paint.
After the stain had dried, I attached some picture hanging hardware and it was ready to be hung on the wall.