Rustic country decor is a practical style that uses natural materials functionally and also frugally. This is good news if you're a country homeowner on a budget. You can find most of the rustic furnishings you need at yard sales and maybe in your own attic. More good news -- rustic decor is about comfort, not perfection. Embrace the time-worn beauty of the pieces you find, and try your hand, however unskilled, at some simple DIY projects.
In your rustic living room, a neutral palette is traditional and soothing. If your country home has plank or stone floors, leave them in their natural state. If your floors are vinyl or laminate, warm them up with a hand-me-down braided rug or a scattering of inexpensive rag rugs. Accent the walls with planks of salvaged barn wood. When you furnish your country home's living room, save money by choosing used pieces. Spruce up a lovingly worn sofa and chairs by covering them with vintage quilts or throws. DIY pillows made from feed sacks and burlap add texture and color. To make a coffee table, top wooden fruit crates with a weathered door.
How to Make Burned Wood Signs
Tree slab art is a refreshingly modern take on a rustic idea, and fortunately, it's easy to DIY the look. Simply use a wood-burning tool to add your favorite phrase or your family name to a cut wood slab. The project requires just a few steps, and the results will last forever when properly sealed and cared for. Just go into the process knowing that care is required to avoid injury because the tool can cause burns if mishandled.
If you purchased your wood slab already cut and treated (i.e. sanded smooth, not varnished), it won't need to be sanded beforehand. However, if you make the slab yourself, you may need to sand it before getting started.
Use a pen or pencil to practice your design on a piece of scrap paper. When satisfied, use a pen to draw it onto the surface of the wood slab.
Use the wood-burning tool to burn your chosen phrase or name onto the wood slab. Hold the tool as though it were an oversized pencil. Practice on the back of the wood slab or on a piece of scrap wood if this is your first time using a wood burner. To start, it's easiest to press the tip of the burner onto the surface of the wood slab and wait until you feel it indenting into the wood. Then, slowly and gently pull the tool over the lines you drew. It is often easiest to pull toward you and to rotate the wood as needed for certain lines. Do what feels comfortable.
Don't be alarmed if you see smoke. This is normal. The longer you hold the tool against the wood (i.e. the slower you go), the darker the line. You can always go back over lines to make them darker. Note that the tool will get hot over prolonged use, so you may need to work in batches if it gets uncomfortable to hold. It shouldn't burn you when held properly, but it may be hard to hold for longer than 20 minutes. When finished, allow the wood slab to cool completely for 30 minutes.
Open and stir a can of wipe-on urethane sealer. Use a foam paintbrush to paint one or two coats of the sealer onto the front of the wood slab to give it a slightly glossy texture. Wait two hours between coats if you do more than one. If you intend to hang your sign outdoors, do the sealing process on the front, back, and sides of the wood slab. Let the sign dry overnight after you complete the final coat.
Flip the wood slab over and use a hammer and pair of nails to attach a sawtooth picture hanger in the back center of the sign.
Add a nail to the wall with a hammer and hang your custom sign. If it has been sealed on all sides, you could instead use a masonry-grade drill bit and screw to hang the sign outside your home on brick or stone.
Wood signs are used for interior and exterior home décor and for business advertising. Hand painting wood signs is made easier by the array of paint and craft products readily available in discount and craft stores. Stores offer vast selections of stencils for both letters and designs. Paints consist of indoor craft paint, or weather-resistant exterior paint. Whether you're making a primitive country wood sign, or a fancy wood sign for a child's room, hand painting a wood sign is a project you can accomplish in a weekend.
Things You'll Need