“It’s just so overwhelming, I don’t even know where to start” moments are the worst. But being brave and starting a DIY project doesn’t have to be scary! It can be a way for you to challenge and maybe even surprise yourself. If you’re like me, though, and you don’t know where to begin, just get started with the basics. Below you’ll find suggestions for a well-rounded collection of tools to finish your next DIY creation.
Stain // A fast and effective technique to stain is dipping and then wiping away any excess stain from the sign. You are in complete control. Dip multiple times for a thicker, cleaner, painted look. Wipe or sponge away the stain for a weathered, antique look. To get a rustic, uneven finish, gently dab the boards to expose the wood grain. We use a variety of water-based and oil-based stains. You really can’t go wrong when it comes to staining.
Multi-Use Pads/Rags // For wiping on stains and finishes.
Paintbrush // Using the right paintbrush goes a long way to ensure a successful outcome. We rely heavily on a simple, flat, chip brush. The wood handle makes the brush firm, easy and comfortable to use. The best part? They are inexpensive and can be washed and reused!
Paint // Picking out paints can be overwhelming to say the least! Before you panic, just remember that it’s always good to have options. “Having an array of paints is the key – latex, oil-based, acrylics, chalk paints, even spray paints – it’s so fun to experiment,” says Toni Koeshall, Milkweed Market’s lead product developer. You don’t have to go overboard, but try a few kinds. We work with an assortment of different brands and colors.
Power sander // When working on big signs or multiples, we use a Hook and Loop Electric Sander. It’s low, orbital vibration helps to get a smooth, aged finished. Using a power tool can save on time and cut down considerably on the monotony of sanding, leaving more time for the fun stuff!
Solid sanding block // Even with a power sander, it’s important to always have a hand block nearby to buff out any scratches. Any fine grade/grit sanding block will do the trick. Make sure it’s an all-purpose, washable and reusable sponge so that you get your money’s worth!
Imagination // If you screw up, you can just paint over it. You learn your technique after diving right in and doing it a few times, so don’t be afraid of trial and error!
Another tip… For a time-worn, primitive look, paint the creation first and then brush and wipe away stain on your finished project.