DIYourself: Lettering

As suggested, and promised! Many of my readers asked for a tip on how to do your own lettering- for wall decor or signs or anything. The same method can be used for images too, not just letters.

When I do lettering, I have two secret weapons. The first, is Carbon paper. It comes in pads, and one sheet lasts foreeeever. You can reuse it one hundred million times before you need another. That's just an estimate of course, but it's pretty close.

Carbon copy paper has one side thats all carbon, that goes face down on what you're drawing on. Then you lay what you are copying on top. When you trace the lines, a copy of it is drawn on your surface. This is the easiest way for me to transfer something.

Here I am all set up, with my board, my paint, and my carbon paper.

This is what I am transferring. I did some measuring of my board and decided I wanted letters 3.5" tall and a saying that spanned 13" wide. I do this using Word Art in MS Word. I just use the basic outline setting, which saves ink, too.

Here I have my carbon paper underneath, and my saying lined up on top

And this is what it looks like after I traced the words on

Then I paint!

And HERE is my second secret weapon, the paint pen.

If you have shaky hands like I do, your painted lines don't always come out straight. I use a paint pen to do the really thin parts, and to go around the edges of the fat ones, to make them nice and straight. It doesn't work well to fill in, but for the edge parts are perfect.


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  1. You are so flipping creative! It looks so easy, yet I'm SURE I'd be horrible at it! haha. It looks BEAUTIFUL!

  2. Thank you so much for showing us this. I made wooden frames for Christmas gifts and I just ordered vinyl decals. They worked well, but I'd love to do it myself!

  3. WOw Janny-this is fantastic! Some great ideas and tips here, thanks tons for sharing. I'll be linking to this!

  4. So, the carbon paper is what gets traced onto the board? Do you use just a regular pencil to trace with? Very cute and clever!!!

  5. Awesome tips! Thanks so much, Jan!

  6. Carbon Paper! Great tip! Now I can conquer the world! Thanks for the tutorial!

  7. You have no idea how many things I tried to get this same more stencils..I'm using carbon paper..thanks so much!


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