Easy Dining Room Art

When my mom was in town last week, we had a lot of time on our hands while we waited for the paint to dry on the cabinets.  So, we decided to whip up some other projects.  My dining room has the most wall space of any room in my house.  We haven’t had anything on the wall because I was never sure which direction to go since the wall was so big.  I didn’t want to spend a ton of money, and one morning my mom had an idea.


Letters before

Based on a blog entry she saw at Sweetwaterbaby.blogspot.com, she thought we could buy the big cardboard letters that you see in every craft store in the country and make a sign.  But not just any sign – a sign that looks like old zinc letters.  We went to Jo Ann’s and purchased four of the largest cardboard letters and two bottles of paint.  One was flat black and one was pearl.



1st coat of black

First we painted all sides of the letters black.  It dried really fast.


Pearl paint

Once the letters were painted black, we used  the pearl paint color and applied a rough coat on top of the black.  At first we thought one coat was good, but after doing a second coat on the D, we could tell we needed two coats to get the old zinc look.


DIY Metal looking art

They really do look like aged zinc letters on the wall.  You know those old signs you can find in antique stores?  Well, these letters look J.U.S.T.  L.I.K.E. them.  During our beer crawl party (read about it tomorrow),  people were shocked.  They couldn’t believe these are just your typical craft store cardboard letters.


Close up

The whole process took about an hour.  Just think of all of the cute words you could make in your dining room, or your child’s room, or even in the laundry room.  We did another letter project that we’ll share next week.  It is a lot smaller but just as cool.



We hope you’ll be inspired to make some letters for your own home.


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  1. says

    I am loving these! I just Purchased a letter last week, that I painted gold, and I am loving it too! I’m thinking of adding more around the house. I love the paint on your, might just try it out. Thanks for sharing.

  2. says

    I love this! What a great paint technique! Those letter look huge…wish I had a Joann’s here, I have to drive to Savannah-what a terrible thing ;). Oh and that a pretty pattern on your drop cloth, I hope you didn’t get any paint on it.

  3. says

    Love, love, love your letters. I’ve been wondering how to do the same with the wort eat for my kitchen. I plan on turning the letter M for the E. i also did not want to spend the money on vintage zinc letters as sold at Anthro shops.

  4. says

    You have inspired me. I saw that same post and bought a W for our bedroom. Well, it’s still sitting in its cardboard glory. I must do something with it. NOW! =) Thanks for the kick in the pants.