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DIY Patriotic Wood Signs in 10 Minutes

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These patriotic wood signs make a big statement without taking up a lot of space. They’re the perfect DIY decor for the 4th of July and look great on a side table or tiered tray. Fortunately, you only need 10 minutes to make them!

Two wooden signs decorated with stars and stripes next to small plant on table

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Project Overview

Sometimes the simplest crafts can turn out to be the most elegant. I love how this “deconstructed” flag looks perched on our side table. In fact, this project is near the top of my favorite decoupage projects to date.

If the word “decoupage” is new to you, be sure to visit my beginner’s guide to decoupage on wood for more project inspiration.


Do you know those bins of wooden knick-knacks near the checkout at Michaels? That’s where I scored the wooden box frames for this DIY project. You can also find wooden objects for crafting at Dollar Tree. I’ve linked similar boxes in the supplies list below.

Supplies for patriotic wood signs, including wooden frames, scrapbook paper, paint brush, and acrylic paint

For your convenience, you can find all of these supplies together in my Amazon shop.

How to Make Patriotic Wood Signs

Step 1: Paint a base coat on the wood frames

If your piece of wood has rough edges, begin by sanding it down with fine-grit sandpaper. You can also remove any hooks on the back of your frames if you don’t plan on hanging them. (My wooden boxes had rope stapled onto the back that I quickly removed with pliers.)

Painting white base coat on wooden box frames to make decoupage patriotic signs
Wooden boxes before whitewash paint (bottom) and after (top)

With a foam brush, apply a thin coat of white acrylic paint or another color of your choosing. I decided to dilute my paint for a more whitewashed effect. You can do the same by placing your paint in a shallow dish and adding a few drops of water.

Note: You can also use a bristle brush, but I prefer foam brushes for whitewashing techniques. It’s easier to wring out any excess moisture.

Step 2: Cut scrapbook paper to size

After the paint has dried, measure the shape of your frames against the sheets of scrapbook paper. I suggest making a few tick marks and then cutting the paper with a paper trimmer if you have one.

Measuring scrapbook paper against wooden box to trim for patriotic sign
Measuring the size of the box on scrapbook paper

I decided to keep it simple by having one frame with stars and the other with stripes to give the impression of a U.S. flag. However, you can get creative with other patriotic patterns. This scrapbook paper pack has loads of fun options in red, white, and blue.

Leftover scrapbook paper?

If you have any leftover scrapbook paper, try making these DIY garden stakes to dress up your patio. You can also make adorable DIY paper fans with a patriotic theme.

Step 3: Use Mod Podge to attach the paper to the frames

Next, apply a thin coat of Mod Podge inside of the frames and place your paper down. Be sure you’ve measured your squares well since the paper gets stuck pretty quickly and is hard to shift around…or so I’ve heard (wink).

Applying Mod Podge to the wooden boxes to make patriotic wood signs

Use a brayer tool or credit card to smooth down any air bubbles that might appear.

Step 4: Apply a top coat of Mod Podge

Wait for the paper to dry for 20-30 minutes before applying a top coat of Mod Podge. This helps seal the paper in place and prevent discoloration later.

Step 5: Apply antiquing wax (optional)

If you want your Old Glory signs to look a little more weathered, you can use antique wax to add some distressed edges. This gives the signs an Americana or farmhouse vibe that adds more character, in my opinion.

Applying dark wax to the edges of DIY patriotic wood signs

I like to begin with the clear wax to prime the piece, followed by the dark wax. When applying the dark wax, make sure you start with a light coat using a bristle brush and wipe away any excess with a soft cloth. In the photo above, you can see the subtle difference the wax makes around the edge of the wooden box.

Decor Ideas with Patriotic Wood Signs

I placed my patriotic signs on a side table in our breakfast room, but this decor accent is small enough to place just about anywhere.

Two patriotic wood signs resembling a U.S. flag with stars and stripes motif sitting next to plant on table

Consider adding patriotic wood signs in these familiar spots:

  • Fireplace mantel
  • Tiered tray
  • Table centerpiece
  • Coffee table
  • Shelves
  • Desk
  • Bathroom

If you end up making this project, please share your creations with me over on Instagram! You can tag me @firstdayofhome.

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Collage of steps to make decoupage patriotic wood signs and the finished project with a U.S. flag pattern of stars and stripes. Text overlay reads "DIY Patriotic Wood Signs"

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