Hi! I’m back already! If you are just tuning in, this is my second post about Operation Curb Appeal. You can check out my previous post on how we overhauled our front garden here. But just because before and afters are my fave here you go…
This was the front of our house on the day we moved in.
Here it is after painting the front door, changing out the light, adding a bench, planters, hanging planters, and completely re-doing the garden.
And here it is now, after changing out the light fixture (again – my husband loves me so much!) and adding our DIY address plaque.
It’s safe to say I’m addicted to Pinterest. I had pinned a few DIY house number projects forever ago, knowing one day we’d get to it. Here are a couple of my favourite address plaque DIYs that helped to inspire this one. Check out my Pinterest space for more outdoor inspiration!
Needless to say, there are several different ways you can complete a project like this, so if you think you might want an address plaque of your own, get creative and have fun! Here’s how we did ours:
- wood of varying widths
- wood glue
- clear coat spar urethane
- address numbers
- miter saw
- palm sander or sand paper
- drill with diamond drill bits
- plastic anchors
- deck screws
I knew I wanted modern, floating house numbers and a modern mailbox and had been searching for a while to find something affordable. I found these house numbers at Home Depot soon after moving in and they sat in our basement until completing this project. A friend of mine knew I had been looking for a modern, envelope style mailbox and scooped this one up for me at Winners when she found it there for $20.
Although I love me some blue, we already have enough of that going on around here, so I painted the mailbox matte black, using this acrylic enamel interior/exterior spray paint meant for metal, wood and fiberglass.
After finding some inspiration on Pinterest, I decided I wanted to do a planked wood plaque. We have several pieces of scrap wood, in a variety of widths, left over from our trim on the main floor. I loved the idea of using a variety of widths in a random pattern. This wood is pine, which is not the most ideal kind of wood to use for an outdoor project. If you are going to buy some wood to do this project, I suggest using something like cedar that will hold up against the elements really well. More on this in a minute though!
I used a scrap piece of plywood we had laying around as my template for the plaque. I held the piece of plywood outside to get an idea of how big I wanted the plaque to be. Turns out, this piece of plywood was the perfect size, and fit the width of the mailbox perfectly as well. So I just measured the width of the plywood (which was 16″) and Shaun cut all the pieces of wood with his miter saw. I actually cut a few pieces too…that’s right..I can do that!
Next, I played around with the pieces of wood, until I decided on a pattern I liked. I only used the plywood as a template and did not actually fasten the pieces of wood to it, but this could be another option. Just keep in mind that if you do it this way, you will see the side of the plywood when you hang it.
To fasten the pieces of wood together, we used the above wood glue. I made sure to buy the interior/exterior type of glue since the plaque would be outside, exposed to the elements. We laid the wood out on a piece of wax paper to glue and let it dry. You should have enough glue to completely cover both sides of the wood that you will be sticking together. Shaun ran a bead of the glue all the way across then spread it out evenly with his finger. You will have some glue seep out of the joints which you can wipe off, but any excess will be sanded off once the glue is dry.
Read the instructions on your glue for drying time. We left ours on the wax paper for 24 hours and placed some heavy weights on top to keep it from bowing up. When it was dry I used a palm sander to smooth the edges and sand off any dried glue. This baby is my new favorite tool and I’ve been dreaming of what I can sand next with it. 🙂
I decided that I would stain the plaque, but I wanted to keep the colour fairly similar. Something nice and light.
I went to the hardware store and settled on Minwax, Pickled Oak. Shaun thought I was a weirdo because I giggled a little bit every time I said “pickled oak”. Doesn’t it just sound funny though? Come on, say it out loud…PICKLED OAK. Bahaha…okay, now explain to the person sitting beside you why you are saying “pickled oak”. Now get them to say it. Laugh it up, get those giggles out! Okay, now back to work kids!!
Anywho, I loved how the colour turned out. I did 3 coats and waited an eternity between each coat. Then I put on the spar urethane. I absolutely needed to do this step because I was using pine and although the plaque is somewhat under the porch, it will still be exposed to rain and snow. I put on 4 coats of this on all sides of the plaque with a light sanding between each coat.
Finally, once we were sure everything was dry, we attached the numbers. Here’s a tip: when following instructions on things, keep in mind that it might not always work the way they tell you to and you’ll have to figure out your own way to do it. This seems to happen with a LOT of things I buy. Particularly the less expensive things…I’m sure there’s no connection there. Anyways, the numbers got on eventually, we just needed to drill the holes slightly larger than the instructions told us to. We also attached the mailbox which, thankfully, was pretty straight forward.
In order to attach the plaque to the wall, Shaun used a glass bit to drill in to the brick. Then he used plastic anchors and deck screws to fasten it. He took the mailbox off the plaque and drilled through the wood behind the mailbox so that no screws are visible. Then we simply hung the mailbox back up.
Isn’t is purrrdy? And how about that light? I have been eyeing that little guy for a while but once we put up the modern address plaque I knew we needed to modernize the light as well. And is was only $32! Spoiler Alert: I’m going to buy 2 of these for our main bathroom reno whenever that happens!!
Up next for Operation Curb Appeal will be beefing up the posts and painting that bench. I love my blue bench, but I love the blue door more (Sherwin Williams – Dark Night), and I feel like there’s just a bit too many blues going on here. Stay tuned for that!