Last weekend, I went out with several girlfriends to Board and Brush in Lake Forest, California. Board and Brush is more than the wood artwork you take home to hang on the wall, it is the experience of ACTUALLY making a project with wood, from start to finish. I wasn't sure what to expect and was even a little intimidated, but I left feeling recharged and excited that I had tackled a fun new DIY project.
When I arrived, I was greeted by Mandy, the shop owner and other friendly women on staff. The environment is warm and inviting and I loved that they offered a wine and beer bar to enjoy while you worked and painted. I was guided to my seat where my stencil and wood pieces were laid on the table waiting for me.
In the beginning of the class, Mandy gave a welcome to the group and some instructions to help everyone feel good about what they were about to do. "Most all mistakes are fixable", she said and everyone seemed immediately comforted. She also gave us a run through of the evening before we got started.
The inside decor is really fun and gets you in the mood to create! All of the supplies are visible to the customer which adds to accessibility and feeling that you can do this.
At my work station, I could see all the tools I needed for the evening in front of me: sandpaper, gloves, wood stain, paint brushes, and hooks.
We got started by sanding our pieces of wood down on the edges.
After we sanded the edge of the wood, we created hammer marks and divots in it to create character. It was nice that they provided ear plugs for this portion of the evening. All the hammers pounding at the same time made quite a noise! With the ear plugs, it wasn't bad at all.
Next, we stained the wood. We had our choice of about a half a dozen different stains. You could also add an additional white wash finish on top of the stain if you wanted to. I chose a walnut stain.
Walnut was a popular stain for my table.
For the next step, I needed a partner to help me peel off the vinyl backing, especially taking care and time with the small pieces.
Once peeled, I placed my stencil on top of my board and aligned the design. I smoothed the design from the inside to the outside and then I used a roller to make sure the vinyl stuck well to the board. Next, I removed the tape on the front that kept the little pieces and intricate words from moving. And now I was ready for paint!
The end result looked so beautiful! We let the board dry under fans for a bit. I was able to bring home with a piece of custom art ready to be hung in my house that same evening. I am so happy with the end result.
The experience of Board and Brush was so much fun that my girlfriends and I already decided we want to go back! It was not just about the board itself, but the involvement in creating something beautiful for your home and connecting with your friends during the whole DIY experience. I can't wait to go back.
Board and Brush would be an amazing idea for a bridal party, baby shower, birthday or special event. They have private events available by request.
To find out if there is a location near you, go to the Board and Brush website. This company is growing, so expect more to appear throughout the United States.
What Board and Brush design would you choose? The options and customization are really limitless!