DIY Shabby Chic Restroom Sign

Alright so awkward situation time: You are at a friend’s house or apartment for the first time, maybe it’s even a housewarming party, and after an hour or so of socializing you need to use the bathroom. The hostess directs you “oh just down that hallway.” No biggie except that there are a million doors down said hallway and you end up in the broom closet or basement somehow and have to walk back to the living room blushing, saying, “umm, which door?”

Now my tiny new home isn’t really that complicated, but on that chance we entertain, I wanted to avoid this uncomfortable fate for any new friends. I decided to create a classy, cute little sign to label the water closet, and it ended up with an adorable rustic/vintage vibe! Care to replicate it?

You will need:
A square wood canvas (mine was 8” x 8”)
White acrylic paint
Clear varnish
Flat artists brush (any width will do)
Small detail artists brush
Scissors and/or craft knife
Gold foil transfer sheet*
Transfer adhesive

*We used iCraft DecoFoil and adhesive (not sponsored, just at our local craft store). Using it as instructed here, it gives a rustic, vintage look. However, if you want a cleaner look with this product, they also make an adhesive foam that you might be able to adhere to the wood. There are also a TON of gold foil products out there. Let me know how your favorites work!*

Step 1
Mix the white acrylic paint with a small amount of clear varnish to thin it out slightly. Then, using long strokes in the same direction as your wood grain, paint the canvas. The thinned paint and a pretty small brush give the canvas a whitewashed, rustic look, but feel free to paint the canvas as you please. You can even go back in with a few strokes here and there to make it appear more natural and random.

Step 2
While your canvas dries, measure out the size of your canvas on the cardstock and cut a square to match. Sketch out the design for your sign or use the free template I made! Then, using an craft knife, cut out your silhouettes to create a stencil. You will want to cut carefully and leave the borders of the figures intact. You can also do this for the letters if you use a wide block font.

Step 3
Tape your stencil to the wood canvas along the edges or using tape rolled up on the back side of the stencil. Fill in the silhouettes with a thin layer of transfer adhesive, being careful not to push it under the edges. Remove the stencil and let dry fully (about an hour for this particular product). You can also paint over your borders and text with adhesive at this point. I drew these out with a pencil straight onto the wood, then covered them fully with the adhesive.

Step 4
Place your foil over the design and rub thoroughly to adhere. Then just peel off! If you missed any spots, just go back and rub again. You may also need to use another coat of adhesive in certain areas.

To give a rustic look, I used the corner of an old gift card to scrape against the foil in the same direction as the paint and wood grain. This also helped me not miss any spots!

Then all that’s left is to hang your cute little sign!

And alas, you no longer have to worry about your guests wandering around the wrong corner, at least while looking for the bathroom! You can also class up your water closet a smidge! (No go back and read the last sentence with a British accent. Do I sound fancy yet?!)

I personally love the vintage appeal of white and gold, but select your colors as you please! This brand of foil comes in many colors, and is pretty inexpensive, especially when you buy online.

Have fun making your bathroom entrance a little more attractive and distinguishable! And fill me in on your foiling tips if you have any!

Stay lovely,

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