DIY house number tiles
Happy New Year, everyone! This is a project I finished more than two years ago. I finally got around to blogging about it. I hope you like it. A Crafty Nest reader, Josie, emailed me quite a while ago asking for uses for leftover tiles. Subway tile nameplates was the first idea that came to mind, but I also thought 4-inch tiles would make excellent house numbers. (This post contains affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something, I may earn a small commission. You can read my full disclosure here.)
The idea was inspired by the house number tiles (above) that Sarah from Sunset magazine found at a salvage yard years ago. She described them as “sunny and Parisian,” which is the look I tried to achieve with my Santiago numbers (below).
I had so much fun creating DIY house numbers that I got a little carried away. I finally stopped at 10 different sets. I based my Santiago house numbers on Karen Barbé’s gorgeous handcrafted textiles. I designed Stanford for the university town in which I used to live. Apple is a tribute to the late Steve Jobs, modeled after the classic keys of an Macintosh computer keyboard. Treehugger is for all you folks who love natural wood. New York is based on the actual colors and numbers of the NYC subway lines (except, of course, that an 8 line and 0 line don’t exist). Any guesses on what Squirrel is based? You can download all these designs for free below.
How to make house number tiles
SUPPLIES & TOOLS
4-inch white ceramic tiles
Krylon UV-Resistant Clear Acrylic Coating (Do not use the Minwax/Helmsman brand shown in the photo above for this project. It turns yellow.)
printed house number designs (download below)
newspaper or drop cloth
4-inch rubber brayer (optional)
1. Download your chosen house number design below. Cut out your house numbers. Be sure to cut off the black lines. Apply a generous coat of Outdoor Mod Podge directly to the tile, then position the paper design on top. Using a brayer, your fingers, or the side of a pen, smooth down the design. Flip the tile over and apply more glue to the underside of the paper edges that are sticking out. Use your fingers to wrap the edges around and smooth them down. Smooth out the excess glue. Repeat for all tiles. Let dry 10-15 minutes.
2. Apply two more coats of the glue on the top of the designs, letting dry 15-20 minutes between coats. Let dry overnight.
3. Apply two topcoats of clear coat to seal and protect your designs from UV and moisture damage. Allow to dry 20-30 minutes between coats. Let dry overnight.
4. Affix one mounting square to each corner on the back of the tile. Secure each tile directly to your house or mount them to a piece of wood (as shown above) and nail or screw the wooden house number plaque to your house. You’ll want to hang them in a covered area because, while they are water and UV resistant, they are neither waterproof nor sun proof. And I haven’t yet tested their longevity.
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Made this project? Email your photo(s) to monica (at) craftynest (dot) com, and I’ll share your version here!
Did you print them on regular printer paper or cardstock?
Amelia – I printed them on high-quality paper, not regular printer paper. Card stock would also work. Let me know how it goes!
What a creative idea! And pretty too! Definitely do it for my house.