White-Washed Patriotic Flag Sign Tutorial

White-Washed Patriotic Sign

Hi every one! I’m glad to be back here today sharing this project with you all.

The other day I was at the fabric store but after not finding that perfect fabric for one of my projects,  I went to the other section of the store to take a break from it all.  While there I saw a little sign that read:

“This Is A Place We Gladly Call Home…

and for that we are truly thankful”

Those words totally spoke to me!  I didn’t buy the little sign but I came home thinking about how to create my own version.  The sign was more expensive than the materials to make my own sign ten times bigger!

Patriotic sign final2

I wanted the look of the American flag on the background, so this is how it was created:


  • Five boards – 1x6x6 Pine Dog Ear Picket Fence at $1.50 ea.  (They are long rough boards.)
  • White, Red & Blue acrylic (or leftover latex paint)
  • Star stickers
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Graphite paper
  • Sander and sandpaper
  • Brown Sharpie marker
  • Dark brown stain
  • 8 Cup hooks
  • 10 Screw eyes
  • Optional: Gold Sharpie marker



Cut off the tops to get rid of the “dog ears.” Mark the area for the blue square on the flag.

fence cut

Add star stickers in the marked off square. Paint over the star stickers with blue paint. (You don’t need to buy new paints for this project,  do you have acrylics? Use that! Do you have remnants from wall paint? Use that! Spray paint?  That’s fine!  This blue paint was a left over from painting my daughter’s room.)

adding star stickers to sign

Paint the red stripes next.  After the paint dries, remove the star stickers.  all the boards got a light sanding.

sanding flag sign

White acrylic paint and water was mixed (50-50), to create a white-wash. Apply three coats of the white-wash.  Wait for the paint to dry between coats.

wash out white on sign

Print out your quote on the computer:

This Is A Place We Gladly Call Home…

and for that we are truly thankful


Transfer the lettering onto the boards using graphite paper.

transfering letters onto wood

Using a brown Sharpie, trace the letters and fill them in.

tracing letters on wood

Do you want them a bit fancier?   Use a gold Sharpie to create shadows.

tracing shadows on letters

After the letters are filled in, it will look like this:

sign after finishing letters

Give the letters an extra two coats of the white-wash to make them blend better.

letters wash out

Lightly rub stain on the entire sign.

Staining sign

To hold the boards together, attach cup hooks and screw eyes between the boards.  (I chose to paint mine silver since I only had gold.)

cup hooks and screw eyes

No need to pre-drill, the boards are fairly soft so the hooks and screw eyes will go in easily.

hooks in place2

Attach two extra screw eyes to the top to hang it onto the wall.

how to hang sign

This was a very easy way to put the sign together, hang it, and… it doesn’t take much space when it is time to store it away!

Patriotic sign final3

I hung some more patriotic decorations and our dining room is ready for a celebration!

Patriotic sign final1

Patriotic sign final4

Thanks so much for stopping by!


  ~ Learn more about Cristina ~


  1. You’re so clever Cristina! I didn’t realize at first that you had attached the boards to each other via hooks and eyes, but I really like that. It looks great. Well done, as always!


  2. I love this! Whitewashing it really adds something, I have pinned and would love to do this using our flag, Canada. Love the hook & eye idea for attaching them together.
    Debbie :)

  3. Thanks Debbie! The hook & eye is a good option to put it together easily.

  4. Love this idea! Will definitely be trying out! :)


  5. This is a very interesting project. I love that Patriotic Flag Sign. I would like to make my own then later on apply that method. Anyway, thanks for the tutorial! 😉

  6. I love everything about this sign! The white-washed look is so great and perfect for the overall theme of the room. It’s really genius to use stickers for the stars – I would never have thought of that! I love how this turned out. Such a creative project that is very well executed!

  7. Wes&Liz Smith says:

    First post – my wife and I really enjoy your website!

    Sorry to introduce ourselves on a negative note – but I have always been a little sensitive to the use of the American flag in crafts, decorations, etc. I’m sure my (Wes’s) 25 years in the Navy has something to do with that. The U.S.Flag code is pretty clear on the subject:

    Flag Code,Chapter 1, Section 8(g), “The flag should never have placed upon it, nor on any part of it, nor attached to it any mark, insignia, letter, word, figure, design, picture, or drawing of any nature.”

    Thanks for listening,
    Wes Smith
    CDR, USN(ret)

    • Wes, first thank you for your service to the Navy and to give your time and energy into protecting our country. I really appreciate your efforts. My understanding of the code is that it talks specifically about treatment of an actual flag. I would never dream of defacing an actual flag in that manner. But, flag art (painting, craft or other) is not part of this code.

      • Wes&Liz Smith says:

        Make a “craft version” of the American flag – white wash it, and then write on it?

        Please don’t.

        This is not art that would be accepted in any veteran’s group I’ve been at. We are seeing more and more of this kind of “flag art” coming up – folks think it is patriotic – veteran’s groups do not.

        Thank you and all the best.

        • Dave,Barber says:

          Wes, you are wrong. I, too, am a veteran. I’m a retired journalist who has written dozens and dozens of stories on our veterans, all in a positive light — including an 80-part series a few years ago on our Greatest Generation. I know these men and women, and I don’t think too many of them would be offended at all at the above work of art, and most would probably glady display it. It is NOT a flag, nor is it intended to be a flag — it is simply patriotic art. For you to speak for any and all veterans groups is unfair — please don’t. Not all of us veterans share your skewed and narrow views of what truly makes this country great …

        • Sharon P says:

          Mr and Mrs Smith, Brittany Bailey,

          I certainly understand the point made by Mr. Smith. I had never thought of it in that way. I am sure that, to Mr. and Mrs. Smith, using the United States Flag designs in crafts is to show lack of respect, giving an air of frivolity to the use of the flag as a design element. To crafters like Ms. Bailey (and me) is a way to share our patriotism and is a point of pride to have these designs in our home. I liken it to hanging a cross in my home to symbolize my faith. It is a symbol – not the actual cross. Then, again, though not practical to hang an actual cross in my home, it is certainly practical to hand an actual flag in my home. Hummmm… food for thought. Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, for bringing this to the forefront of discussion today. I will be careful in displaying the Flag of the United States of America during this Independence Day celebration.

          • Sharon P says:

            Please excuse my typographical errors. I proof-read my comment three times before selecting “post comment,” and still managed to post a comment with typographical errors.

      • I learned a lot of the “rules” when I was in school (many years ago) about caring for and displaying the flag. I’m also the daughter of a career army officer who was a World War II and Korean War vet. I grew up in the military. I understand and appreciate the sensitivity to how the American flag is treated. Thank you for that. It is true that we don’t see much of it anymore.

        I have been seeing actual flags used as tablecloths, which sets my teeth on edge. I hate seeing the flag hung incorrectly, and I’ve gotten that fixed on at least one occasion. It seems it is no longer necessary to take the flag in at night and put it up in the morning. I remember when it was taken down if it was about to rain; at least that was true on all the army posts where we were stationed. Schools used to raise and lower the flag every day, and it was a honor to be chosen, often for a week. And I’m told many of those rules have been softened.

        However, items like this are facsimiles, not the real thing. It is not made to do anything more than to suggest the flag, to represent it using the same elements, but not to BE a flag. No one would mistake it for the American flag. Maybe it would help to reason a little further out. For instance, if I object to this, should I also object to putting a flag on a plate as a design element, a patch, cuff links, a lapel pin? Items like that are sanctioned and sold everywhere including at military installations. And they are exact design replicas—i.e. they look precisely like a flag. Should we treat them as flags?

        In no way is this intended as a challenge or to be disrespectful. I know the line is not always clear and we may not agree on where to draw it. I just believe that Brittany is completely on the safe side of the line. And I’m glad you share my enthusiasm for her great blog.

        • Very good point Ellen….exactly how I look at this. Everyone has their opinions but I do not see anything offensive in this. Now if we’re talking about an actual flag….well, I think this country has forgotten the reason we respect the flag and all that it represents.

  8. It is lovely! And very patriotic! My husband and father are both veterans. We feel that a representation of the American flag used as a patriotic decoration (and what a touching sentiment yours has!) is a lovely thing–and all too rare in these days–and not at all offensive. As many have said, the use of an actual flag would be very different. Representations are used by the military itself as clothing decorations, as well as by military families as car and home decorations. We would be proud to display your craft!

  9. My father is a vet, my grand father, an uncle, two sons, and I’m willing to bet every single one of them would absolutely love this sign. It’s beautiful. It’s not an official flag, and it gets the point across. Thanks for positing.

  10. I am a real stickler for not using the American flag in any way that is offensive and obeying all flag laws and
    etiquette. The above is in NO WAY offensive as it IS NOT an American Flag. This is only an idea of one in that the red white and blue and the overall shape is the same. I think it’s a wonderful example of patriotism and I may try to whip myself up one like it. I, myself have an antique flag that I have thought about decorating with as it has a lot of sentimental value, but so far I haven’t come up with anything that I think wouldn’t be offensive. I would understand if veterans would be offended if you have used an actual flag. I would also think that they would look at this and be happy that you are showing your patriotism and not be unhappy about it in any way, shape, form or fashion. Just my two cents worth. … Now, let’s talk about really offensive things like people wearing hats on their heads, chewing gum, talking, not saluting and not showing respect when the national anthem is being played OR when the American Flag is being raised! That’s Girl Scouts 101 Folks! Give proper respect when the real American Flag is honored! This includes athleletes! Happy Birthday America!

  11. I love your patriotic flag art, I would love to try and make something similar for our own home! The saying you picked is perfect, it speaks volumes … Beautiful!

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