Learn how to use vinyl stencils to make wooden signs with this detailed tutorial. These signs are perfect for all seasons and occasions!

Using vinyl stencils to make your own wooden signs can save you lots of money when decorating for the holidays or any other big event.  In fact, I recently utilized this skill to make personalized signs for my daughter’s wedding.  I’ll give you a peak at those toward the end of the post.  For now, let’s get started by going over the supplies you’ll need to recreate this project.

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Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

The supplies you’ll need for this project include:

Before I began cutting my stencils, I measured the boards I was going to be using in order to create the right sized stencils.  I used 1/4 inch birch boards and cut them to measure 15 x 7 inches.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Then I made my vinyl stencils using my full size plotter and 813 stencil vinyl.

How to make wood signs using vinyl stencils! #rusticorhardhome #vinylstencils #diyhomedecor #farmhousediy #diyfarmhousedecoridea

Vinyl stencils can only be used once, but they create a nice finished product.  Below you can see the reverse weeding compared to above.

How to make wood signs using vinyl stencils! #rusticorhardhome #vinylstencils #diyhomedecor #farmhousediy #diyfarmhousedecoridea

The next step was preparing my boards.  I used Dixie Belle Voodoo Gel in the color Tobacco Road to stain them.  I simply used a rag to apply the stain.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Tobacco Road is my favorite Dixie Bell Gel Stain color.  I use it almost every time I need stain for a project.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Make sure to stain the sides of your wooden boards.  This will give them a professionally finished look.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Once your boards are stained, let them dry so they are ready for the next steps.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Now you are ready to apply your vinyl stencils!!

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

To apply my stencils to the boards, I used clear transfer tape.  To begin this process, I placed the tape over the stencil.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Then once the tape was applied, I lifted then stencil off of the white backing.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Now it was time to apply the stencil to my board.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Be sure to smooth the stencil down onto the surface, then peel back the transfer tape while making sure the stencil material is staying on the surface.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Finally, peel back the clear tape to reveal the stencil.  NOTE:  You can see that the full stencil ran over the sides once I lined it up.  For this design, that was not a big deal.  I simply trimmed off the excess before I removed the clear tape.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

This is what it will look like before you add your clear coat.  Keep in mind anywhere you see wood now will be white in the end. It just depends on the way you weed your vinyl in the beginning.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Time to prep so you can avoid bleedthrough!

To prep my boards I used Dixie Belle’s Clear Coat in the finish Satin.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

I painted a thin, even layer of the clear coat over the entire board.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Let dry or speed up the drying process like I did with a fan!

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Now it’s time to paint!

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Since I had multiple signs to paint, I opted to use a foam roller to paint my signs.  I was only able to do this because I prepped each sign with the clear coat first.  This process makes the work take a lot less time when creating a large “batch” of sign.  If I was doing just one or two signs, I would do the same steps using a makeup applicator sponge.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

I like to apply two even coats with plenty of dry time in between.  This will give you the best finish.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Once both coats are applied and completely dry, peel back your vinyl.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

I use an X-Acto knife to get the small pieces.  Just be careful not to gouge the surface!

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Once the vinyl has been removed, it’s time to clear coat the final product.  This will protect your work from chipping and other damage.  I used the Dixie Belle Clear Coat Satin for this step.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Once everything is dry, you can use a Crop-A-Dile to punch holes in your signs if you are going to be hanging them.  SInce we used the 1/4 inch birch this is an easy task for the Crop-A-Dile.

Learn to using vinyl stencils to create wooden signs for all occasions! #rusticorchardhome #vinylstencils #woodensigns #diyfarmhousedecor #diysigns

Here are a few of the wooden signs I created for my daughter’s wedding using the vinyl stencils!

Wedding decor made with vinyl stencils.

Wedding decor made with vinyl stencils.

Want more fun and easy DIY home decor ideas??  Find me on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest!

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