DIY Wooden Monogram “Wreath”
A few weeks ago, I showed you all how I updated our front porch and added some serious curb appeal with just a few simple and inexpensive DIY projects. One of those projects (and the item that made the biggest impact!), was the addition of a wooden monogram “wreath” to our front door. Not only did this project pack a serious color punch to our otherwise bland entryway, but it helped use up some things we had stowed away in the garage. Not a day goes by that this monogram wreath doesn’t make me smile, and I am so glad I persevered with my vision when the project didn’t go quite as planned along the way. Read on to see exactly how this eye-popping door feature came together!
Here is a look at our front entryway. It’s a small alcove, so there wasn’t a lot of room to add lots of different porch accessories. A new window covering for the side window, a large patio plant, and a statement piece on the door were all I needed to give it some personality and life! You can read more about this mini makeover here.
Of all the craft projects I can do, making wreaths isn’t exactly one of them. I can limp along during the holidays to get a decent-looking, festive wreath up on our door, but I’m really not one to change a wreath out regularly or with the seasons. Because I’ve learned this about myself, I wanted to put something on the door that not only reflected our family’s style but could also stay up year-round. This striped monogram display was my solution, and gosh do I love it so very much!
I’ve had the wooden monogram for years now, and it’s been painted a variety of colors to work with all the front doors we’ve had since I bought it. This time around, our front door is extra-huge, so the monogram needed a bit more oooomph behind to make it work proportionally. A wooden round painted in red and coral stripes was my solution!
I am very much in a mode right now where projects need to be relatively quick and simple, and I need to be able to make them using supplies and materials easily available (as in, off-the-shelf). There may have been a quicker (and lighter!) way to achieve the same look as I have here, but I really wanted to keep this project as simple and user-friendly as possible (for my sake and yours’!) To make something similar for your home or door, here is what you need!
- Wooden Round – Use a wooden round that is slightly bigger than your monogram. The one I used is this 24″ one from Lowes. If you have the time, tools and expertise, cutting a round from thinner plywood or MDF would make for a lighter option.
- Wooden Monogram – These are available in a wide variety of styles, sizes and colors on Etsy and other stores. I recommend hunting around until you find one you like. I purchased this unfinished one in the 18″ size (but it looks like the shop is now closed).
- 1″ Wooden Rounds – These will help provide dimension between the large wood circle and the monogram. I used about 12 on my project.
- Paint – In the color(s) of your choice. I used Sherwin Williams Show Stopper (Red) and Coral Reef (Coral).
- Clear Polycrylic – Since this is an outdoor item and it will be exposed to the elements, I wanted to protect the paint finish. If you’re placing yours’ inside, you probably don’t need a protective coating.
- Metal Wreath Hanger
- Wood Screws – Choose a length that works for the thickness of your monogram and wood circle.
- Sanding block or paper
- Good quality paint brush
- Clear ruler (if doing stripes)
- Painter’s tape (if doing stripes)
- Tailor’s Chalk
- Super Glue
- Drill with wood drill bit
- Metal drill bit
- Paddle drill bit
- Not shown: Duck tape and Large Command Strips
Phew! That looks like a lot of supplies. I promise this project is pretty simple; let’s get started!
Start by sanding down your wood round with the sanding block and cleaning off the dust with a rag.
Next, give the wooden round 2 coats of (your first color) paint, allowing ample dry time in between. (Color shown is Sherwin Williams Coral Reef)
If you want to paint stripes on the wooden round, do some quick math to determine how wide you want your stripes to be (mine are 2.5″ wide). Then use a clear ruler and painters tape to mask off the stripes.
Once the edges of the tape are pressed down firmly, use a second color paint for the stripes. Two coats may be required here for good coverage. (Color shown is Sherwin Williams Show Stopper.)
While the second coat of paint is still wet, carefully peel off the tape to reveal your stripes!
Once the paint is fully dry, apply 2-3 coats of the polycrylic, again allowing sufficient dry time between coats. If you en up with bubbles, sand the surface lightly before applying the next coat.
Once the wooden round is painted, protected and drying, you can move on to preparing the monogram. If it’s not already, paint the monogram a color of your choosing. (Mine was already spray painted white.) Once it’s dry, flip the monogram over and attach the 1″ wooden rounds at various spots around the monogram using good-quality super glue. I used two layers of rounds to give the finished product a bit more dimension.
Once dry, use the tailor’s chalk to mark large ‘Xs’ on each of the wooden rounds. Make the chalk as dusty as possible because you want the marks to transfer to the large wooden circle.
With the wooden rounds chalked up, flip the monogram over and place it onto your wooden monogram exactly where you want it. Push down on the wooden rounds to transfer the chalk marks to the painted surface. (Note – you don’t want to mis-mark the wooden round, so you may want to practice and mark the placement of the monogram before doing the chalk application. Try your hardest to place it right the first time to get the chalk marks accurate and clear.)
When you lift up the monogram, the chalk ‘Xs’ should be transferred to the front of the wooden round.
Next, use a drill with a wood drill bit to make holes in the center of each X.
Once the pilot holes are drilled and cleaned up, use a few drops of glue to lightly secure the monogram back into place on the front. Then, flip the entire unit over and use wood screws to secure the monogram and wood spacers to the large wooden circle. If you were careful and accurate in your placement, the pre-drilled holes should line up right with where the wooden rounds on the monogram are.
To protect your door surface from exposed screws, I highly recommend counter-sinking the screws into the wooden circle. A paddle bit on your drill can help you do this easily.
With the monogram securely attached, it is ready for hanging!
Up until here, the project was moving along swimmingly. Then it came time to hang it on the door. My original plan was to use a bunch of the large command strips all around the perimeter of the round. Each of the strips is weighed for 16 pounds, so I thought for sure it would work. Well…this is a big door (that we use all the time) and the wooden round is pretty heavy (about 9 pounds). It took about 2 light slams of the door for the wooden round to come crashing down onto the porch. This was right as we had company arriving for Sam’s baptism weekend (I was finishing projects literally as some family was arriving!), so I set the round aside to troubleshoot later (I didn’t want it falling on guests!). When I showed the project to my sister, she agreed it was super cute and we should find a way to get it on the door before the rest of the family arrived. Her super handy husband was on the case and had a perfect solution figured out in minutes. The wooden round is STILL on our door and hasn’t fallen once, so here is how we did it:
Using a hammer, my brother-in-law flattened out one end of the metal wreath hanger (the end that a wreath would normally hang on). He then drilled four holes in it with the drill and metal bit. After some eye-ball measuring, we secured the flattened-out wreath hanger to the back of the wood round with more wood screws.
So as not to damage the paint finish on the door, we then covered the metal plate with a few layers of Duck tape. Finally, to keep the round from banging all around as the door was open and shut, I secured one more of those command strips to the bottom of the round.
Now the weight of the wooden round is supported by the metal hanger over the top of the door, and the one command strip keeps it from moving around as the door is used. The door is safe, my guests are safe, and I was able to get my eye-popping “wreath” up for good. This hanging solution has worked out brilliantly for us. Based on what kind of round you use (a round cut from thin plywood would be much lighter!), how big your door is, and how much you use your door, you might be able to use a different solution!
Even though we had a bit of trouble along the way, I am so glad we were able to figure out a way to hang this monogram on our front door. It’s bright and happy, it nods to the style of the rest of the house in a fun way, and I love that it can pretty much stay up year round. Our porch does get some pretty intense sun, so I’ll be interested to see how/if it fades. If it does fade (or I want to change the colors), I can just un-screw the monogram, re-paint the round, and assemble it back together! Until then, I’ve got all the heart eyes for our current porch display!
Aside from a door “wreath,” I think a similar look could also work above a bed, mantel, or console table. The monogram paired with tone-on-tone stripes is such a fun yet classic look that could work with a variety of styles. I know a few of you have been waiting for this tutorial, so I do hope you’ll give it a try!
Have a great week everyone! Next week, I’ll be answering one question I get a lot: “how do you go about designing a room?” I’m going to show you my process, and I promise it’s something you can do too! See you then!