How to make faux-zinc house numbers, part 1

I love big zinc numbers and letters like the ones that Anthropologie has. And if Anthropologie had numbers, I probably would have broken down and bought them, but they don’t – they only  have letters. I found some cool numbers online but – ouch! We have four numbers, and that adds up quick.

Story of my life: I want them – badly – but I don’t want to spend a fortune. So, I started poking around the web and found a totally cool recipe for faux zinc letters at a blog called Sugar and Charm. They used cardboard letters, which I didn’t think would hold up well outside, but it got me thinking… so here we go with how to make your own faux-zinc house numbers.

First, buy wooden numbers – there are a surprising number of sources for these online but I wanted mine really chunky. I found them at SJA Wood Design. You can choose by size AND from an amazing number of fonts. I chose Bookman Old Style in 7 inch pine for the amazing price of $3.50 each.

This is what they looked like when they arrived:

pine house numbers
What I started with

Since they were pretty raw pine (they even smelled nice) I primed them.

Open can of Zinser 1-2-3 primer
My fave primer
House numbers primed white
Primed

Then I did two coats of silver paint. I really think any silver paint will work; I used cheap hardware store acrylic, which I always keep on hand.

Silver paint with letters
Silver paint and bronze powder for the next step
Silver numbers on newspaper
Two coats of silver paint

And now the fun begins. Here’s what we’re going for, roughly – it’s a close up shot of the zinc counter we built, which is weathering nicely:

close up of zinc counter
Zinc, aging

Next we’ll cover the faux!

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