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"Vintage" Welcome Sign from an Ikea Cabinet Door

When I saw The Rustic Pig's Ironing Board turned Welcome Sign on Pinterest a while back I loved how it looked propped up on the front doorstep.  I have been keeping my eye out at the flea markets and thrift stores for an old ironing board, but that has been an impossible mission.
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But then, on one of my many trips to the Ikea “as-is” section (although this happened to be the same trip I also picked up the cabinet door I used for the kids' backpack station) I saw this long tall door for only $2 and I knew it would be perfect to convert!

Ikea cabinet door
 (This was originally a floor model display door from a sample kitchen,  it is really a Lidingo 15x64 door panel, which retails for $134! I'm telling you.. ALWAYS CHECK THE AS-IS DEPARTMENT!) 

My original idea was to stencil the word “Welcome” on it in black and call it a day, but I decided I wanted more of the aged vintage look like the original.
Instead of just painting and distressing it with sandpaper, I decided to use the school glue crackle finish technique I used previously on the pair of boat oars that went into the nursery.

I applied a LOT of white school glue all over the surface:
Painting on glue
Then brushed it out to set the direction of the cracks:
Crackle finish with glue
I wanted the crackle finish to really show so I used a sample of grey-black ‘oops’ paint as the top coat:
Painting crackle finish
As the paint dried the cracks were really obvious between the white door surface and top coat.  After it had completely dried I cut a stencil out of dollar store contact paper and stuck it down to the door:
Contact paper stencil
The font I chose was Colonna NT (a default font that came with my computer, but you can download it here) because I loved the look of the split letters:
Sign Stencil
I used off white to stencil the letters themselves:
Stenciling sign
I really liked the result:
Crackle finish sign
At this point I thought I was finished.  I set it up outside just like my inspiration sign:
Antique sign
I lived with it for a couple days, but there was something about it that bothered me. The high contrast in the paint didn’t truly look old, especially the bright white letters.

So I sanded the edges with some fine grit sandpaper and then I watered down some brown paint (Burl by Martha Stewart from my bathroom cabinetry) and gave the entire thing a once over.
Antique faux finish
Here is a little trick to get ‘faux water stains’ on your finish: 

1. Give the surface a quick coat of oil based stain and quickly wipe most of it (you want it to still be a little damp.

2. Working quickly, splatter it with water based paint and immediately wipe that off with a slightly damp rag.

When the water based paint hits he oily surface it will separate leaving distinctive rings and stains:
Faux aged wood
The finished version definitely looks more ‘authentically vintage.’Aged cabinet door
 I set it back on the front step, but I loved it so much I decided to try it out in some other locations.
Vintage welcome sign on front step
I hung it on the front of the house for a while:
Vintage welcome sign

Finally, I decided to move it indoors.  It is currently hanging up for you to see as you walk into the house. I had the perfect long thin spot right above the cat door:
Welcome sign
I love how it came out, especially since my total investment was less than $4.
Faux vintage welcome sign

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