Print Project
5 from 1 vote

Distressed Garden Sign

Author: Amanda Formaro


  • Unfinished wood sign – You can easily make some with pallet wood or find a variety of unfinished wood options at your local craft store.
  • Dark wood stain – I used Jacobean but anything will work
  • Sandpaper
  • White acrylic craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Teal outdoor acrylic paint
  • Foam pouncer
  • Cutting machine Cricut or Silhouette and this Please Grow template


  • In a well-ventilated area, use a foam brush or old rag to stain the entire sign. Wipe away any excess stain and let dry. Once completely dry, lightly sand the sign to smooth out the wood grain. It’s OK if the stain is not even.
  • Using a dry brush (lightly dip the brush in paint and dab off excess) begin painting the sign. You don’t want complete coverage. Instead, use as dry of a brush as possible, and paint back and forth multiple times, to create partial coverage, or a “distressed” look.
  • Let the white paint dry, and then lightly sand the sign, especially around the edges.
  • Using your cutting machine cut out the “please grow” words on regular vinyl. You can use this template here. This is your stencil.
  • Place the vinyl stencil over the painted wood sign. Smooth the vinyl thoroughly over the ridges of the wood.
  • Load the foam pouncer with outdoor acrylic paint. Using a straight up-and-down motion, paint over the stencil. This will minimize paint bleed.
  • While the paint is still a bit tacky, peel the vinyl stencil at a 45-degree angle.
  • Let the paint dry completely before displaying your new distressed garden sign outside.