I love decorating for the holidays. All of the magic and excitement of the season hit you like the smell of freshly brewed cider when you walk into a festively decorated home. I wanted a sign that I could keep up all winter long that shared our love of horses in a subtle and charming way. I came up with this hand painted vintage looking sleigh ride sign that I adore.
We love horses, but it is often difficult to incorporate equestrian themed things into home decor without it looking “cheesy”. I wanted some kind of old looking, antiqued sign that fit in with our winter decor. I searched for inspiration, and had no luck at all. I wanted to come up with a sign that I could keep up all winter long that wasn’t necessarily a Christmas decoration. I wanted it to look old and distressed and have the words sleigh rides on it and a price. I have no idea how much a sleigh ride would have cost a hundred years ago, so I came up with 25 cents (because the numbers looked cute) and went with it.
I first found an old unused board to make my sign. I cleaned and sanded it a little because I wasn’t sure what the finish was on it. I then layered two coats of black spray paint onto the wood and covered that with two coast of red spray paint. I hand painted the letters onto the sign using this very cool technique that I found here. This technique saved me a ton of time and worked really well. I usually print out my lettering then trace it onto contact paper and cut it out with an exact o knife like I did with my Farmer’s Market sign. This new technique saved me an entire step. You just print out the lettering on your printer and lay it onto your wood where you want the letters to be. Then you use a ballpoint pen to trace around the letters. The pen leaves an indent in the wood, transferring your letters and leaving a little groove. Then you can easily hand paint inside the lines that where left by the pen. The little groove makes it easy to stay in the lines and creates a little edge for the paint to stay in. I will definitely be using this technique again and am so happy to have found it. It was quick and easy with great results. I even did this sign with a broken finger on my writing hand so I think it turned out well considering.
When my lettering was dry I used an electric sander to distress the sign until I was happy with the finish. I sealed it with a matte lacquer spray and used pop-can tops hot glued onto the backside to hang it on the wall. This sign is absolutely perfect for our home and has just the look and feel that I wanted. It has a great subtle nod to our equestrian background without going overboard. If only we had a sleigh so we could really give sleigh rides, I would really be in heaven.