The Fourth of July is just right around the corner and for some time now I’ve been wanting to build myself one of those cool, wooden pallet flags that I’ve seen on my neighbor’s porches. The other day I finally rolled up my sleeves and I did just that, except there is something different with mine than theirs…it LIGHTS UP!!!
(Eat your heart out neighbors!)
Here it is with the lights turned off…
…and now here it is with the lights turned on! It dazzles!
- Chop Saw
- Nail Gun or hammer with box of 1 1/4in long finishing nails
- Hot glue gun (to secure lights in stars)
- My DIY easy wood stain (to make wood look old)
- Two 1x2s at 3ft 4in long
- Eight 1x3s at 3ft 4in long
- Two 1x2s at 1ft 5 1/4in long
- Red, white, and blue paint (I used acrylic paint from the craft store)
- Small star stencil (mine was approx. 2in tall)
- Paint brush
- Stencil Sponge
- Painters tape
- String of fairy lights with the mini bulbs. You’ll need as many lights on your string as you have stars on your flag (Since I had 20 stars, I used a 20 bulb string) You can order a string like mine HERE
Battery powered lights vs. Plug-in lights: Since I prefer having both options of either using batteries to run my lights, or having a cord that plugs into a socket (which will save my batteries), I ordered myself a SWITCH IT plug in (shown in below pic). This way I can use my batteries for times when my sign is on display where there’s no electric plug-in socket. If there IS an electric socket nearby, I simply take my batteries out, put in the ‘fake’ batteries (that are attached to my SWITCH IT plug), then plug it into the socket! (It’s so easy, I just love this thing!) You can order one HERE.
Let’s get started!
Push the 1x3s together and then nail on the 1x2s, making a frame (I made sure to put two nails into each end of the 1x3s to make everything sturdy)
Flip it over
Slap on some of my DIY easy wood stain to make the wood look old
I started with taping off where I wanted the blue square to be on my flag
Then where I wanted the stripes, I taped off the edges of every other board, leaving only the boards exposed that I would paint only the red stripes
Painting was easy as I simply dry-brushed the colors on
Dip the tip of the brush into the paint and dab off most of the the excess,
Then run the tip of the brush along the surface of the wood. Go with the grain of the wood, making sure NOT to fill in all of the cracks, and to leave some unpainted wood showing through.
Peel off the tape where you just painted the stripes
Now tape off the edges of the red stripes, leaving only the boards exposed that will be painted white
Dry-brush on the white stripes
Remove all of the tape
Now tape off the outer edges of where your blue square will be
Dry-brush on the blue
Remove the tape
Time to paint on the white stars. Be sure to dab most of the excess paint off of the stencil sponge before dabbing on the paint, so that the stars will also have an old ‘worn’ look
(As a side note, make sure you paint your stars close enough together so that the lights will reach each one…you’ll want a little extra slack of wire in-between stars)
Done with the painting!
Spray on a clear finish (I chose not to have my flag glossy, so I used satin or matte)
Find a drill bit that’s the same diameter as the mini light bulbs
Drill a hole in the center of each star
Stick lights into holes from the back
On the back, dab a little hot glue over each hole to secure lights
I used a piece of sticky-backed Velcro to mount the battery box to the back
Here’s the flag not lit up yet…looks great!
..and here it is with the stars all lit up!