Thursday, April 8, 2010

Lantern-shaped house plaque

So this is what our entryway looked like, lacking in a lot of areas. Colorless, boring and uninviting.

There's nothing super wrong with it, it's just not what I want. It's too bland, I guess. (Yes, I know we have some wood rot to take care of this summer - it will be done).

We have a light fixture above/in front of the door (which you can't see) and I'll be changing it out within the next few weeks. Ideally I'd like to have a nice lantern next to the door where the house numbers are now but that will be a cost to draw electricity there and all so it's out of the question.

Inspired by chandelier wall decals such as this one which are all the rage right now I figured I could do something similar with my entryway. So I decided to make a lantern-shaped house plaque instead!

It gives me a nice illusion of having a lantern while giving our house number a classier presentation. By the way, I'm not going to go into detail about all that I'm planning on doing to this entryway but let's just say that it's going to look A LOT nicer when I'm done with it. Hopefully most of it will happen this summer, as time and money allow.

So how did I do it? It's not too complicated, it's just a cutout from a scrap piece of plywood I had laying around. But, here's what I did.

I started out with an image of a lantern that I liked. I believe I hijacked the image off of Lowe's website but I can't quite remember (this was a few weeks ago). I stretched the image slightly in Photoshop so it would be able to accommodate my four house numbers and then I blew it up using Blockposters (a detailed post on how I do this can be found here). This is what it looked like at that point.

This lantern was originally on a lamp post which I erased in Photoshop while I was playing around with it. But to make the bottom of the lantern look finished I drew a semi-circle with the help of a small glass (you can see that part in the pic above). And then I cut it out. This is my shape template.

At this point I was playing around with where exactly the house numbers would fit on there before I went through the trouble of jig-sawing it out. It fit so I very carefully replicated this shape in plywood.

It's a little hard to see in the pic but I also drilled some holes at the top and bottom of the plaque so I could attach it to the wall. And I sanded the whole thing as well to take off the rough edges and what not.

These are my beloved power tools that I used for this project: drill, sander and jig saw. All wished for and received as birthday presents and Christmas presents over the last few years, lined up on my latest birthday present - the picnic table (more on this in a later post). The pic isn't great but what's new about that, right? :)

So I flipped out my spray cans and went to work.

First a coat of Krylon primer and then a few coats of Krylon glossy black which is what I had on hand. I barely let it dry enough to touch before I whisked it up, brought it in and nailed the house numbers on, I just reused the original numbers since they were in ok shape. And then I attached it to the door frame with screws where I would have hung my real lantern. Here's the after again and some close-ups. 

It was getting dark so I tried it with the flash as well :) And just for fun - here's a close-up of the before as well.

100% better, don't you think? I really like the after but it might be because I'm already imagining all the other changes as well :) I have an active imagination when it comes to my projects and I get all excited about the vision in my head even before there's not a whole lot to show for my excitement :)

So, all in all this cost me $0 since I had all tools and supplies on hand already and it took one afternoon and evening to get it done. Not too shabby, huh? :) I'm more than happy with how it turned out anyway.

Ps. Linking up with The Shabby Chic CottageBeyond The Picket FenceSomeday CraftsPosh PiecesFunky JunkBetween Naps On The Porch.
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  1. What a unique piece--fantastic job cutting it out! Thanks for sharing!

  2. thanks is so cute - i have never seen anything like that! very unique

    Sausha @ {show & tell}

  3. that's an idea I wouldn't have thought of, myself.
    But that is how it is for me with most of the things I see around these blogs! ha!

    I like yours - it DOES remind me of the chandelier stencils.

    Oh, and it makes your address POP!

  4. So clever. It really does dress up your porch.

  5. What a clever idea - nice job! Stopping by from BNOTP.

  6. That's a terrific idea! Looks wonderful.

  7. Brilliant idea!! It really pops on your house!

    Happy Met Monday! :-)



I really appreciate you taking the time to comment because I know you didn't have to. Additional ideas or related techniques are always welcome, the more we brainstorm the better all of our end products will be.
While I try to answer all comments I sometimes don't make it or have your contact info. If you don't hear back from me it doesn't mean I hate you, I just ran out of time (or simply had no way of contacting you).
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