I Love You Bettah

I Love You Bettah

Me: “I love you”

J: “I love you bettah”

As in, I love you better, spoken with a fantastic southern accent.  It’s what Justin’s grandmother Mimi used to say to his grandfather Papa.  What Mimi said to Justin as a child.  What Justin’s family says to each other.  And now, as part of that family, what Justin says to me.

It. Is. So. Sweet.

Last fall when I was working on Rae’s Texas Family Room Makeover, we found some adorable black and white canvases that read, “I love you” and “Love you more.”  Ever since we hung those babies on the wall, I’ve had the idea in my head for making my own “Love you bettah” wall art.

Then I happened on the perfect piece of wood over at Last Chance Mercantile.  It was old and dusty, and I like to imagine, well-loved.  I don’t know where it came from, but I just have this feeling that it was once a part of someone else’s home.  Maybe a ceiling beam, or a wall support, or a serious piece of fencing, or who knows what.  But I like to pretend it watched over someone else’s home and heart and love and life for a while before it ended up at Last Chance and then came home to nest with us.  Like Justin’s family’s words, there was just something special about it.  I happily snatched it up, took it home, and gave it a good power sanding.

I used 80-grit sandpaper to start, and then hand-sanded it with 150-grit sandpaper to smooth down the edges.  It was fun to see how just a little bit of sanding could take off years of grit and grime.  You can see it started out gray, but just below the surface, there was solid wood waiting for a fresh coat of paint and a new life.

I Love You Bettah

I started with a thin layer of white paint {Americana’s acrylic Snow White}, followed by a layer of navy {Americana’s Midnight Blue}.  I made sure to let the white peek through blue in a few spots to keep with the board’s rustic feel.

I Love You BettahI Love You BettahI Love You Bettah

After letting it dry in the California sunshine for an afternoon, I moved on to the challenge of the text.  If you follow the blog, you know about my super sneaky trick for transferring images or text from computer print-outs onto whatever it is you happen to be crafting.  If not, you can read about it here from one of my very first posts on hand-painted pumpkins.  All you need is a pencil.  And apparently for large projects, a whole lot of patience.

Do you ever have an idea in your head of how easy it is going to be to get something done?  Only then you get started, and it’s not quite so easy at all?

It was kind of like that.

I Love You Bettah

While this technique works, I usually use it on small projects (e.g., a letter or a symbol), not for large amounts of text.  Lesson learned.  If you’re trying this at home, you might want to go ahead and just invest in some graphite paper to make the transfer.  If not, you might want to invest in some patience.

I Love You Bettah

The lettering I used was Edwardian Script font at size 400 {Microsoft Word for Mac}.  After I transferred the letters onto the wood, I used a very small flat edged paintbrush to paint them on juuuuust right.  Slightly painstaking, but totally worth it.

I Love You Bettah

I painted on two coats of white and let it dry overnight.  Then I mixed 2/3 of the Midnight Blue paint I used on the background to 1/3 of black acrylic paint and added shadows to the letters to make them pop.  {Hint: If you’re not sure where to paint the shadow line, you can just head back to your computer screen, put the shadow function on your font, and use it as a guide.}  As a finishing touch, I painted a border of white around the lettering.  I decided I didn’t want the lines to be too perfect, so I just painted them on freehand.

My original plan was to sand down the final piece and apply antique wax to it.  I wanted to be true to the origin of the board and the words and give them a slightly worn vintage look.  I let it sit out on the dining room table for days debating if I could bring myself to mar the surface I had just spent so much time and concentration painting.

I Love You Bettah

But in the end, I couldn’t.  Perhaps in the future.  {Maybe after another move or two when a few more scratches and nicks work their way onto it?}  For now, this little bit of love and craftiness was gifted to Justin for our second wedding anniversary.  Since it was his present, I let him decide where to hang it.  He picked the kitchen, which makes sense since we spend so much time in there filling our hearts with love and our stomachs with delicious things.

I Love You Bettah

Happy Anniversary to us, Justin!  I love you bettah.




7 thoughts on “I Love You Bettah

  1. Absolutely LOVE this!! ❤ ❤ I love how you guys put your personal saying in your house to always remember your love for one another!!

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