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DIY Market Sign for Kitchen – Vintage Style


Welcome and thank you for checking out this tutorial on how to make a vintage style market sign for your kitchen. If you're like me, you've probably seen 100 of these on Pinterest but no one ever really tells you HOW TO MAKE THEM.

Well, the time is NOW!

Let's make our own vintage inspired DIY Market Sign for the Kitchen!!!


Cool, right? There are a few things you really need to know to make this rather simple project a TOTAL SUCCESS. And I am going to share them with you because I want your sign to turn out as magically perfect as I feel like my sign turned out. READY?



Let's talk SUPPLIES.

To create a DIY Market Sign for your kitchen you'll need these supplies and here's why:

Chalk Paint – I chose PLAID's FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in White Adirondack (34878) and Rich Black (34882) because I wanted a bold sign with alot of contrast. Can't get more contrast than black and white! Chalk paint dries fast, dries matte, and basically covers up everything without primer. This is essential if you are using an old or reclaimed piece of wood – chalk paint will cover dirt, stains, other paint in other finishes., and more. Believe me, this paint will make this job go so much faster and you will probably only need one coat of each color. PLAID's Chalk Paint comes in lots of beautiful colors to fit any decor:

Masking Tape – Use a good quality masking tape that sticks well when you want it to and is easy to remove. Skip the cheap stuff to avoid having to peel tiny pieces of tape off of the wood when the cheap masking tape breaks.

Wood – We used a scrap of plywood that was leftover from tearing down our patio roof. Plywood or pallet wood is the best for this project because you'll still get a wood look without the cost. Find broken pallets and used plywood at construction sites. We scored a bunch of pallets and wood when a big warehouse by us got solar panels. Talk to crews working in your area and ask them if you can come by and pick up any extra plywood or pallets when they are done working. Free wood is good wood!

Brushes – I recommend a foam stencil brush. if you don't have that, you can use a foam paint brush like I did for the stenciling. For touch up work, I recommend small round brushes like the PLAID FolkArt Gold Taklon Detail Brushes (#10/0, #3, #5). The pointed tip of these round detail brushes makes it easy to touchup along the straight edges of the letters on the sign.

Sandpaper or a Sander – You'll want to sand the wood before painting to avoid getting splinters and ruining your brushes. If you want the sign to have a more vintage, distressed look, sand it after painting. I did not sand this sign.

Varnish – choose a good indoor varnish, like FolkArt Home Decor Varnish, for this project to protect it, especially if you plan on displaying it in the kitchen where it will be exposed to grease, dust, and water.

Electronic Cutting System – I used the Sizzix eclips2 Electronic Cutter to make the “Market” stencil but you can use any digital cutting system. I prefer the Sizzix eclips2 because the machinery itself is heavy duty and it cuts beautifully every time. If you DO NOT have one of these (they are expensive) you can:

  • Buy Large Letter Stencils
  • Print out the letters on paper and use a craft knife to cut the stencils
  • Pay someone to make the stencil with their electronic cutter
  • Find a local craft or sewing store that has an electronic cutter you can rent or try

Cardstock or Vinyl – I used cardstock for this project because it is cheap and easy to use, however, it does curl when you start painting on it. Vinyl won't curl and can be reused as a stencil in the future but is pricier and more difficult to place when using a large piece, like you'd need to use for this piece.

Craft Knife – we'll use this for cutting the masking tape because it gives a nice crisp edge to the tape.

Measuring Tape and Yard Stick – We'll use the measuring tape and yard stick to center the letters and to create the black border on the sign.

Pencil and Eraser – to mark letter placement etc. Erase the lines with the eraser when the project is complete.

Drill, Drill Bits, Screws – to mount the sign on the wall once you've finished creating it. You can mount it with nails too.


Once you have these supplies in order, it's time to make the sign!

Let's make this sign!


Step by Step Directions for creating a DIY Market Sign Board:

  1. Cut the sign base from scrap plywood or piece it together using pallet wood. This sign is 48″ x 10″ but you can make your sign any size you like.
  2. Sand the sign base to remove any excessively rough areas.
  3. Paint the front of the sign completely with PLAID FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in White Adirondack (34878) with a paint brush or foam brush. Allow to dry.
  4. Mark 1″ from each edge of the sign. Apply masking tape to the inside of the marks to create a border. Use a craft knife to cut straight edges on the ends of the tape strips.
  5. Paint the border with PLAID's FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in Rich Black (34882) with a paint brush or foam brush.  Allow to dry.
  6. Measure the space between the tape borders. This space was 40″ x 8″ on my sign.
  7. Subtract 2 inches from the height of the sign. This will be the height of the letter stencils you'll cut. (6″ in my case)
  8. Subtract 4 inches from the width of the sign. Divide this by the number of letters in the word you want to paint. If you are painting multiple words, count each space as a letter. This will be the width of the letter stencils you'll cut. (also 6″ in my case).
  9. Using an electronic cutter, cut the letters from sheets of cardstock or vinyl to spell out the entire word or words.
  10. Trim the letter stencils to fit the sign.
  11. Mark a pencil line 1″ above and 1″ below the tape border on the sign.
  12. Mark another pencil line 2″ from the left and 2″ from the right of the tape border on each side.
  13. Find and mark the center of the sign.
  14. Line up the letters along the lines, using them as guides. When the letters are in place, secure them with masking tape.
  15. Apply PLAID's FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in Rich Black (34882) to the stencils with a stencil brush or foam paint brush. Allow to dry.
  16. Remove the stencils and masking tape from the sign.
  17. Erase any visible pencil lines.
  18. Using a round detail brush, touch up the sign with the PLAID's FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in either color as needed. Allow to dry.
  19. Sand the edges of the sign and over the letters if you want the sign to look distressed and aged.
  20. Apply 2 coats of FolkArt Home Decor Varnish to the sign with brush to seal it. Allow to dry completely before mounting to the wall.
  21. Drill a pilot hole in each upper corner of the sign, about 1″ from the edge of the sign. Mount to the wall using anchors and dry wall screws. Paint the tops of the drywall screws with PLAID's FolkArt Home Decor Chalk Paint in White Adirondack (34878) if desired.

WOW, that was alot, right? It's actually a lot easier than it sounds to make this sign. Here are some more ideas for “vintage style” words to put on your sign:

  • Fresh Eggs
  • General Store
  • Open
  • Market Open
  • Farmer's Market
  • Fruit Stand
  • Fresh Cherries
  • Fresh Pies
  • Bakery

Thank you for stopping by today! Can you see making this sign for your home? What words would you have the sign say?

Jennifer Priest has some of the best craft ideas on her site Just JP and previously, Hydrangea Hippo. She shares tons of free tutorials and YouTube videos showing all kinds of crafts and DIY.

About the Author

Author Profile

Jennifer Priest is a 20+ year designer in the arts & crafts industry and home DIYer with a passion for creativity. An Army veteran raised on a ranch, from her experience, she shares smart DIY projects that save money and fun craft ideas that anyone can make. Besides blogging, Jennifer is a Master Practitioner and Trainer of NLP, Hypnosis, and MER, and coaches other online entrepreneurs on money mindset, business, and living an intentional life. When not blogging, Jennifer is having adventures in the wilderness, on road trips, playing with her cats, and making paleo food.

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