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How to Use Your Cricut Machine to Make Stencils + Make Your DIY Wood Signs

My husband always laughs at me because I’d rather have a saw for a birthday present than a piece of jewelry.  When I got my miter saw a few years ago for my birthday, I was so excited!  Making wood signs is so much fun and you don’t have to be a DIY or woodworker guru.  I think DIY projects should be fun and not discouraging.

I love to make DIY wood signs. Signs have a way of bringing some fun and life to a room.  I’m always making a sign and each time he sees or hears that I am making another one, he says, “You’re making another sign?”  Once they’re made, then, of course, he says, “That looks nice!”

With the help of my Cricut machine, it’s easier and easier for me to make any sign that I want with anything I want.  Sometimes I’m able to find SVG files I can purchase on Etsy and sometimes, I design something in Photoshop or Illustrator, save it as an SVG, and upload it to Cricut Design Space so that my Cricut can cut it.

Creating DIY Wood Signs

Today I’m going to take you through the process of how I design what I put on my signs.  I use the slice method a lot and if you haven’t heard of slicing, it allows you to take to different images to make different parts of the image.  With slicing, you can create brand new images that you can use.

Raw wood for DIY wood sign

I also use welding for a lot of my designs.  Welding allows you to join images or letters (which is usually what I use it for) to create a single image.  So if you wanted to cut out the word hello in a cursive, without welding the word, it would cut each letter separately.  If you weld the word hello, it will cut out as one image.  If you were to only attach the word hello, it would cut together, but there would still be cut lines in the word.

Tools for your DIY wood sign

How to make stencils

How to create stencils with your Cricut machine.
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How to design your DIY wood sign in Cricut Design Space

In the video below, I should you how to design your text using welding and slicing.

How to design your stencils with your Cricut: Part I


How to design your stencils with your Cricut: Part 2

How to calculate the size of words needed for your DIY wood signs

DIY Stencils With a Cricut Machine

In the video, How to design your DIY wood sign in Cricut Design Space, I talk about how I calculate the sizes needed for your sign.  Here I will explain how.

  1. Measure the width of your piece of wood.
  2. Measure the height of your piece of wood.
  3. Determine if you want to have space around your words or do you want them to go to the ends of your wood.  I personally like to give the width anywhere from .25” to 1” depending on the width.  The larger the width, the larger the space I leave.  The smaller the width, the smaller the space I leave.

    This specific piece of wood I reference in the video is 5.25” wide and so I am leaving a space of .25” on the left and right sides.

    For the height of the wood, I like to leave 1” on the top and 1” on the bottom.  Again, it’s personal preference.
  4. Perform your calculations: This piece of wood for this sign is 5.5” x 72.”
    1. Width
      1. Leaving .25” on the left side of the wood and on the right side means that I am removing .50” from the width.  My words and letters can’t exceed 5.25” wide.
    2. Height
      1. Leaving 1” on the top of the wood and 1” on the bottom of the wood means that I am removing 2” from the height.  I have 70” to work with.
      2. The height of the word sweet is 5.25.”
      3. I will also need to subtract that from the height.  I now have 64.75” to work with.  To keep things simple, I worked with 64” in height.
      4. Divide the height you have to work with by the number of words.  64”/2 (the word home).  My words home cannot exceed 32” in height.
    3. Note final measurements
      1. The word sweet is 5.25” x 5.25”
      2. The words home are 5.25” x cannot exceed 32” each.

How to paint your wood sign

How to paint your letters on your wood

Once you’ve got your stencils cut, tape them onto your wood using the painter’s tape.  I like painter’s tape because it is easy to remove and it doesn’t leave a residue.  On important thing to note.  After you have painted your sign, do not leave the tape on the wood.  Once you’re done painting, remove the stencils and continue to let dry.

How to paint your stencils

If you wait until the paint is dry to remove the stencils, there is a high chance that the paint will come up along with the stencil because it has dried to it.  As with most stencils, you may have some paint bleed.  If so you can easily clean it up with a paintbrush and the paint!  Just paint along the areas that you want to clean up.

Finished DIY Wood Sign

Completed DIY wood sign

That’s it y’all!  You’ve got an amazing sign!

Need help with your home decor and completing your DIY projects?  Get your copy of the 2020-2021 Hoem Decor and DIY Project Planner.

 

 

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