Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Easy DIY Wooden Name Blocks

Honestly, I started this project when I was still pregnant with Brooks and didn't remember to finish until he was about 6 weeks old.  When I actually sat down to do it, the whole thing took about 2 hrs from start to finish including drying time, so I probably should have had this done a lot sooner.
Back before Brooks was born, we got this awesome vintage bar/dresser/changing table on craigslist, but no matter how much we tried to dress it up, it still needed a little something.
I toyed around with the idea of putting fun frames above it like this:
image from here
Or some shelves like this:
LOVE the manly feel of this one!
 or this:
But the more Chris and I fooled around with eclectic nick-nacks, the more the nursery started to look like a small time Bennigans.  Between our Texas military map, vintage art, and horse shoe, we had enough "stuff" going on.

So I decided to make something and put my own spin on it.

Chris and I were both smitten over the name "Brooks" from the moment it touched our ears.  I loved how the name was a little secret just between the two of us before our little man was announced to the world, so I thought having something with his name above his changing table would be perfect.  Personal, but not too "much".

I liked the idea of hanging something, like this below, but with a bit more of a manlier touch.
First, I nabbed these 5.5 x 7.5 wooden blocks from Hobby Lobby.

At only a $1.47 a pop and then 50% off, my total came to $4.41 for all 6 blocks.

My plan was to stain them, mark each one with a letter from B's name, and hang it (securely) on the wall. The idea of having these wooden blocks just  "on" the wall seemed a bit boring to me so I decided they should probably hang from something (twine?).

Keeping with something more masculine, I hit up our local Home Depot and browsed their coat/hat rack section.
Two of them caught my eye.  The first was a smaller hook which I thought might be nice and simple... nothing too crazy to take away from the wooden blocks.
The next was a bit showier: two layered with just the slightest bit of embellishment.
I'll let you guess which one I chose.  **cough**the last one**cough***

At 5.5x my total block budget, $25.62 was a bit on the higher end of what I wanted to spend but figured something uniquely DIY was worth it.

Once I got home, I gave my blocks a good stain.  I can't tell you what the exact color was, but it was a mix of all three of these:
Early America, Gunstock, and Ebony
While those dried, I found some extra twine I had laying around the house and cut foot long pieces for each block
Once the stain dried, I used super glue to adhere the heavy twine to the back of the blocks.
I actually did this step twice to ensure that there would be NO WAY the twine would be able to come off and let the blocks fall
I then flipped everything over and super glued my letters on.
 Sorry, I forgot to mention I also found these acrylic letters at Hobby Lobby for $2.00 a piece.  (Bad Samm for not taking a picture earlier)

I then cut my twine and made a knot for each block.
 The reason I did this instead of leaving it as a loop was because it would have nearly been impossible to have all the hat hooks the same height AND the twine the EXACT same length to have everything even.  This way, with a knot, I could tie and retie them to the appropriate length so everything would be perfectly even.

At first, I hung the letters from the lowest hook.
I know you can't really tell from this picture, but they looked a little weird hanging at an angle off the wall instead of flat up against it. 

So I put it behind the second hook.
Much better.

Low and behold, it turned out wonderfully.
I really like how it looks when you walk in and I love the fact that it stays in line with the whole wood/manly thing we got going on.  Plus, Brooks loves to stare up at them while he's getting changed.
All in all, the project cost about $30, not including the stain and twine (which I already had).  Not too shabby for some unique nursery name art.
What do you guys think?  I would love your feedback!



  1. I love this project, how adorable! I did those wooden magnetic letter trains (pieces available at Michaels) and painted them for my first two boys, but got lazy and didn't do them for my second two. I'm glad to see you writing again! They really do change everything, don't they?

  2. looks great! very masculine. I have had such a hard time finding masculine things so I love the inspiration from Brook's room!

  3. Very cute! I love names and personalization and think this goes perfect with his nursery! Love the name too :)

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