Monday 29 May 2017

Keep Out Sign for the Young Marine Biologist - by Claudia

Hi, servus and thank you so much for stopping by today! And I would also like to thank you all for the lovely comments you always leave with my projects - they're highly appreciated! :)

Today I want to share with you a "Keep Out" sign that I made for my son's new room. We have been busily renovating during the last weeks and my husband and I are switching rooms with our son. So he will soon have his own bedroom and small living room (and we are going to have a brand new bedroom with new all are more than happy). 

Those who already know a bit about me and my family may remember that my son wants to become a marine biologist and that he especially loves sharks, whales and the coealacanth. So making a shark door sign for him was quite an obvious thing to do with Calico Craft Parts' awesome shark wood shapes

Calico Craft Parts used:

- Great White Shark MDF Wood Shape (please note: this design is now discontinued but link takes you to other shark wood shapes)

I wanted to create a vintage style sign, so I browsed the net for images of vintage signs and studied their colours, designs and font styles before I decided on which products and colour tones to use.

Then I started with adding some Burnt Umber heavy body acrylic paint and white DecoArt Acrylic Gesso to the plaque and the shark shape. 

Once the plaque was dry I added some DecoArt Weathered Wood to it with a soft brush. 

While that was set aside to dry I painted my shark using DecoArt media Titanium White, Phtalo Turquoise, Qinacridone Magenta, English Red Oxide and Cobalt Teal Hue fluid acrylics. 

I mixed some Titanium White, Quin Magenta and English Red Oxide to paint the mouth's inside. Once that was dry I dry brushed the teeth with Titanium White. 

In the meantime the Weathered Wood had gotten dry to the touch - perfect for quickly applying the top colour with a soft brush. I chose DecoArt Americana Sea Breeze as I think it is the perfect vintage colour for an ocean life themed sign! 

I let the painted plaque dry naturally before I mixed some DecoArt Americana Primary Yellow and DecoArt media English Red Oxide to paint a thin frame around the plaque. 

Once that was dry I drew a thin white border using a white gel pen. 

To make sure the font and letters were in the exact spot where I wanted them, I drew a template by outlining the plaque and the shark with a pencil and cutting it out. Then I marked the height of the letters with lower and upper lines that followed the shape of the plaque. 

I sketched my words on that template and then transferred them onto my plaque using DecoArt Americana Transfer Paper. I used a ball point pen for sufficient pressure and traced my letters precisely. 

They were then painted with DecoArt media Phtalo Turquoise using a fine tip brush. 

I also added two greyboard stars that I had painted with English Red Oxide. 

Everything was glued into place using matte DecoArt Decou-Page.

For a final touch I painted a very thin outline with English Red Oxide to repeat the colour of the stars and the shark's jaw. 

I drilled two holes using my Dremel to fix some rough cord for a hanging loop.

I simply tied a knot into the cord's ends. 


My son loves his new sign for the door to his new "realm". And I hope you like it too (and I am quite sure that there are a lot of future marine biologists out there who would love a "keep out" sign like this too). 

See you in two weeks!
Hugs and happy crafting!


  1. Great sign for your son's room! I would definitely think twice about entering with this warning on the door! Seriously, though, it's a great idea, brilliantly done. xxx

    1. :) Thank you so much, Julie Ann! Mwah! XXX

  2. that's awesome! How perfect for your son. =)

  3. Fantastic Plaque, Claudia. Thanks for tutorial.

    1. So glad you like my shark sign, Lisa and Shilpa! Thanks so much! xxx

  4. Really cute, Claudia. Great tutorial.

  5. Dark burnt umber to a LUSCIOUSLY crackled turquoise seascape - so YUMMY! And I bet that shark was thinking YOU looked YUMMY tooooo Claudia!!! What a perfect project for your budding biologist! SO NEAT. Xj.

  6. I'm sure he loved this sign. Perfect for a young man who wants to be a marine biologist.

  7. :) Thank you both so much for the kind words, Joi and Lucy! Mwah! xxx