Thursday, August 4, 2011

{How To} for the Lyrics Board

I want to start off my welcoming all my new readers and giving a HUGE thank you to all the AMAZING comments and response my Pinterest Challenge Lyrics board received. Seriously, still in shock... and still doing the {happy dance}!  I never expected it and just shows how truly amazing this community is and supportive you all are!  So THANK YOU!

Almost every project I do I take at least before/after pictures to show for the blog, and I've learned that with every project I post, I follow it up with a tutorial.  Well, for some reason I didn't take my "how to" pictures for each step along the way for this project.  I think a part of me felt that the way I did it doesn't seem the "right" way, so I didn't bother.  However, as comments reflect on the lyrics board post... many of you would like to know how exactly I did the lettering. 

So, I did another project tonight showing how I did each board...
just with a different project tonight.
I like to call my technique "reverse vinyl". {what?} I know right... I'm weird! 

I'll start off by saying this is more of a "how to" than a tutorial because I honestly don't know if anyone is as insane as I am for taking this much time to do the way I did it.  Also, there is a million different ways to go about doing the same project I did.. there's freehand, stenciling, stamping, painting, just using vinyl... etc etc etc. 
However, I know myself, I know that I have horrible penmanship, I knew I can get too frustrated with stenciling letters, and I didn't want my project to just use vinyl.  This is the same technique that I do a lot of my signs and wood art around my house so I knew it worked for me.

 Let's begin
I started with a VERY rough idea of spacing of the lyrics of choice across 6 boards:

Next I used a photoshop program (Gimp2) to actually create a blank canvas and wrote out precisely what lyrics will be on what board and the spacing I wanted.  By opening up 6 new documents I was able to get an exact idea of the overall look of the boards and spacing.  After I was happy with the overall look I saved each project as a .jpeg.

Then using my Sure Cuts a Lot program I imported each image and used the "trace" function. 
{If you're not familiar with SCAL, or the Cricut machine a lot of this is probably going right over your head, which I apologize, but again this is more of an explanation of how I did this project}. 
Note: If you don't have a Cricut, Silhouette. etc.. there are still a lot of ways to do this by freehand by printing out the same documents on paper and cutting each letter out onto contact paper and using a similar method.

Each "board" is sized to be a 12x12 and I have the Cricut personal which cuts 6x12 so after I imported each image I hid half of it, cut it, then cut the remainder ending up with a total of 12 sheets of cut vinyl lettering. 
The vinyl I use is from Everyday Vinyl and I swear by this company.  They have great prices on vinyl and fast shipping.  The final result of this project actually doesn't end up with the vinyl on the pieces, but I've tried several types of vinyl before and I prefer the type they use as it actually adheres better than others, which is exactly what you need for this project. {Plus! For the month of August click the link and use the coupon code and get 10% off your order, score!}

{Deep breaths, I know this is a lot}

Now onto the wood:
I knew I wanted 12x12 squares so I went to Lowe's and picked up a 12"x6' board and had them cut it down to 12" length pieces.  Now because wood planks aren't true to measurement I was actually left with 11 and 3/4ths x 12" boards, which was fine because I knew that's how it would end up ahead of time.
I spray painted each board black, including the sides, which is my base color.  This is the color you'll want your lettering to ultimately be. 

Since I didn't take pictures along the way for my lyrics board, I'll show you examples of each step with my new project of the night...
{Paint the base color}

Next after you get your vinyl ready to use by weeding {technical term which means get ride of all the vinyl you DON'T want to stick}

Adhere it to the board using transfer paper {for the lyrics board, this took patience to ensure I was lining up each line with the board next to it so it didn't end up all wonky}

{In a simpler world, I could have painted my lyrics board white, and used black vinyl and left as is.. however I knew I liked to make my life complicated and use this process instead}

Next paint over the entire board, vinyl included, with the background paint color...

As you can see, you can still see the vinyl letters through the top coat of the paint.

I let it sit for about 5-10 minutes.  You want the paint to still be "wet to the touch" meaning it has slightly dried so it will still adhere to the board, but not completely dried it will lift up when you remove the vinyl letters. 

Then I use my fancy shmancy Cricut tools and remove each. individual. letter.
{This took SERIOUS patience}

Here's what you're left with:

{Happy Dance}

I let the final coat of paint continue to dry, and then took my 220 grit sand paper and roughed up the edges and gave an overall distressed look to each board. 

Then simply hung each board up trying as hard as possible to get each one straight!
Final result:

And final result of my project tonight:

I decided I wanted the LOVE to have contrast, so I just used white vinyl for the word.  For a very quick last minute project, I'm actually in love with this little sign!

Let me know if you use this technique for any of your projects!
And PLEASE let me know if you have any questions!

By the way!  I'm so close to 100 GFF and once I hit 100 I'm going to do a giveaway!  YAY!



  1. both are super super cute my friend! Well done!

  2. Ooops you probably got that previous comment in your inbox! lol
    That was supposed to be me (Cindy) I forgot I was logged in under one of the blogs I am designing!! LOL
    Anywho I love love love these! you did an AMAZING job!
    like I said I think you should open up an etsy shop and sell these! I would buy one cause I'm not patient enough to make one plus I don't have a fancy cricut or silhoutte (sp?) machine!
    Love that "all you need is love" sign!!

  3. I love the way the yellow pops!

  4. I love that! I totally get to need photoshop!

  5. Hey Doll,
    It's ALL about you today and the Lyric Art at
    Thanks for the inspiration!!!

  6. W-O-W. This blows me away!! I love love LOVE the lyric panels you made for above the bed <3
    Jaimee @

  7. I am in love with that little sign. Gorgeous! Found you on TT&J and am your newest follower :)

  8. This is amazing and it came out great!~!!!! I am visiting from Tatertots and Jello and I am a new follower!! Also, I would love if you would come link this up to my Delicately Constructed Friday party tonight or tomorrow!
    Hope you are having a great weekend and I see you around soon!!

  9. You did a wonderful job! I am completely convinced I need to try a vinyl project with my Cricut! Thank you for all the awesome, inspiring projects you do!

  10. Pamela, WOW! What a beautifully done project! I love the idea of using meaningful lyrics, and think your technique is fantastic!

    Glad I saw your link at Frugalicious!


  11. LOVE! I am seriously considering copying this brilliant project! I love it, love it!

    Notes She Wrote

  12. I LOVE it! What a great idea. That's so funny I love both of those songs so much. I actually named by blog Lines Across My Face after the Brandi Carlile song. I love the look of the printed words across pieces of boards. I am definitely going to try this. Found you through In The Looop.

  13. LOVE the remodel on your room and absolutely love the lyrics idea! Want to do one for me?

  14. Love the way it looks...and love love love the yellow color you used. Could you tell me what shade that is?

  15. This is AWESOME and totally inspiring! Thanks!

  16. I just found your website on Pinterest! Love your ideas. I am 51 and have never been good at projects or crafts. 2 years ago I went to Africa and had to do crafts in a village with children that were sick from waterborne disease and malaria. I didn't know what I was doing but prayed for divine intervention! Ha ha! When I returned home I started writing after a 28 year dry spell. I wrote a book about my Africa trip and now I am inspired to create...something, anything. I want to paint and restore furniture. I think I get the inspiration from my mom and my grandfather. He was a carpenter and a welder. She raised 7 children and to keep from losing her mind she used to paint pictures on flat rocks! Beautiful. Anyway, you have inspired me to try even though I really don't know how to do anything. Thanks!


Love hearing back from my readers, you make my day! Thanks, Pamela of PBJstories

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