Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Designing Your Own Subway Sign

You have probably seen quite a few vintage subway signs creeping up everywhere from design blogs to retail stores like Restoration Hardware.

I love the vintage/industrial feel it brings to a living room. But with an average price tag of $1,600 I decided to make my own. Plus, I wanted to customize it with my own cities/stops.

STEP 1: I designed the actual signs in Photoshop. I picked the cities where both Ryan and I have lived:

Kenmore Square (Boston, MA)
Central Station (Sydney, Australia)
Brooks Drive (Annapolis, MD)
Woodley Park Zoo (Washington, DC)
East Falls Church (Falls Church, VA)

I made sure to use a very gritty font.

STEP 2: I printed my designs at Kinko's on a very heavy cardstock.

STEP 3: I purchased custom cut wood from Home Depot for $7, and painted it black to match the printed sign.

STEP 4: I adhered the sign to the painted wood using Mod Podge, a durable hard coat finish specially developed for use on furniture. This sealer adheres paper and fabric to almost any surface, and dries clear and smooth.
STEP 5: Finally I nailed hanging hooks into the back.

Although it doesn't look exactly like the $1,600 vintage piece above, I think it came out super charming!

Plus I love that it reminds me of all the places Ryan and I have lived, including our first apartment, and now our first home together. It's my version of a quilt :)



  1. Creative like your Grandma Jean!

  2. You have inspired me to do my own! Thanks for the tips!!