I’ve seen lots of family initial pieces online and was looking to add an “S” to our decor when I saw a friend selling the outdoor neon letters from her former business. She had two “S”s (is that how you spell it?), one 18″, one 24″ tall. They were 5.5″ deep and heavy. Outdoor signs usually are. I asked for the 24” to make a bold statement.


I unscrewed the orange front from the heavy steel back. Inside there were a few critters and a glass tube “S”! Surely I could paint that too. Gave it all a good wash and decided to toss the metal back. The remaining orange “S” was 1″ deep and very light. Perfect!

To fill in the screw holes, I used these paper fasteners and painted right over them. There was also a small crack in the outer curve that I covered with a piece of masking tape. Painted over that too.

I had bought some gray clay-based paint a few years ago and experimented with it on the outside. Then used Annie Sloan Old Ochre on the inside and hung up my big “S”.

It needed something but just fit the space on the wall so I couldn’t add things around it. I decided to add a Fall wreath for now. Maybe it will be a seasonal piece, or I might find a small magnolia wreath to leave year round. What do you think?


As for the glass tube “S”, I painted it black with another product I wanted to try out. I’d like to hang it in our mudroom but haven’t quite landed on where. Maybe I need another wreath to hang from this coatrack? Or make a collage on the wall?


I just love repurposing things. It’s where I feel most creative.

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