The DIY Welcome Sign (from Hell)

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Tawsha and I have an affliction…some kind of a personality flaw that won’t allow us to do a DIY according to the directions given. When one of us finds a project that catches our eye because it’s a great idea, is useful, or just plain cute, we share it with the other. After a very brief discussion of what a great find it was, the following conversation almost always takes place…

PATTI: [Tilting her head to the right staring at the project with this weird glazed-eye look] “You know what….” (at this point she trails off as the idea is forming in her head and going through intense analysis, while Tawsha dances around saying “What?” “What?)

TAWSHA: [Looking at the same project for approximately 2 seconds, claps her hands together one time]  “I’ve got an idea…”(12 new versions of the project have already presented themselves in her head,  but she has no formulated plan as of yet).

Both of the above comments are  ALWAYS followed by “What if we…”.  Then the rapid-fire speed talk begins as we brainstorm our way to “our” version.  It works for us and together we can come up with some pretty cool sh*t.

What’s my reason for telling you this story? Well…because I did this project quietly on my own. It was such a simple idea I was almost embarrassed to tell Tawsha I was excited to do it. I have an empty wall in my entryway that I thought this would be perfect for.

My inspiration was a tutorial from Dittle Dattle.  I say tutorial, but I’m not sure I even read the instructions, because I had already gone through my normal thought process (see above) just looking at the picture.

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The tutorial used covered shoebox lids. I didn’t have shoebox lids, but I thought frames would be quick, cheap and easy. I have tons of scrapbook paper, found a new curtain rod I’d never opened from like 5 years ago, had a roll of every width of  black ribbon in my sewing stuff, and found a can of black spray paint buried in our storage room.

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All I bought were seven Dollar Store frames (I wanted my sign to say “Welcome”), and some chip board letters from Hobby Lobby that I painted with black acrylic paint. Easy peasy and cheap! Instead of looping the ribbon from the back of the frame, over the rod and back down to the frame again, I had a better idea:  Just loop the end of the ribbon over the rod and glue it back on itself, then glue the other end of the ribbon to the back of the frame. Less ribbon used, and the ability to be more precise positioning the hanging frames.

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I gathered all my supplies, and wielding a glue gun like nobody’s business, I whipped this sucker out during the first 30 minutes of The Bachelor, then let it dry while I suffered through the remainder of the show listening to Sean say, at least 10 times, “I can really see myself sharing a life with this woman”. I hung up my sign and, like Sean, “had a great time  and thought it went really well”.

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Later, as I’m laying in bed reading, I heard this little “tic” noise. No biggie, probably the furnace or something. Then a few minutes later, another one a little louder, then another. Weird. I got up and walked around the house not finding anything odd. On my way back to bed, out of the corner of my eye, I see this…

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WHAT THE HELL?? Noise identified. I KNEW I should have let the glue dry longer – shit! The next day I gathered all the little frames from behind the bench where they’d landed, picked off the dust, and re-glued the ribbon to the back of the offending frames. This time I let them dry overnight.  I rehung the sign the next morning and it looked cute as can be.

Two days later I wake up and I’m missing the L and the E. Sonofabitch! WE COM?? Okay, now I’m pissed. My easy peasy project that I 20-minute-short-cutted while watching shirtless Sean the idiot Bachelor, (a new reason to hate him – he wrecked my sign!),  has now turned into the four day project from HELL! I ripped all the frames off the ribbons (I’m doing well in my anger management class, thanks for asking), took down the rod one more time, and fired up my glue gun again.

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I re-cut the ribbons and glued the livin’ SHIT out of the end that loops over the rod and attaches back onto itself. Then I emptied another glue stick on and around the ribbon that attaches to the frame, and more on the frame itself. I laid it to rest for like two days. Have you seen Christmas Vacation – the part where Chevy Chase is in bed with tree sap on his hands? That was so my house. Everything was stuck to everything.

The sign was rehung one last time, now with white marks all over the black painted rod from taking  it off and on so many times. There’s like 2 inches of glue on the back of each of the frames. I cannot beLIEVE that this was such an ordeal. In the end, I won the battle between me and this project.  It’s imperfect and a bit quirky – so me. The silly little thing makes me smile every time when I think that anybody who sees it will never know what a huge pain in the ass this simple little cheery sign was to make. Well…’til now.

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It works, yes? Have you had any projects from Hell? We’d so love to hear about yours – don’t leave us hangin’ here.

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*This post was listed in Fluster Buster’s and Diana Rambles

5 Comments

  1. Love your narrative – needed a good laugh today! Thank you!

  2. I have contemplated this project but I don’t like how far off the wall it hangs with the supplied rod hanger/things. any ideas?

    • Hi Jeanette! It all depends on what kind of rod and what kind of hooks you buy. You can get something that is more flat with a very “close-to-the-wall” hook. Do you like how we speak in technical terms? (I kid) The cool part about this project is how much you can customize it. Perhaps purchase a rod with nothing on the ends or hooks that nestle right against the wall and leave only enough room to place your rod in.

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