DIY Vintage-Inspired Letter Blocks

Join Tonia from Boho Chic Design to learn how you can make your own vintage letter blocks for any season!


  • Square dowel or 2×2 cut into cubes (or if you can find wood blocks at the craft store, SCORE!)
  • Country Chic Paint in the colors of your choosing, I chose Wanderess, Elegance, Bliss, Liquorice and Simplicity
  • Country Chic Paint Antiquing Wax
  • Country Chic Paint Clear Coat
  • Image Transfer Medium
  • Cheese cloth or a lint free rag
  • Stir Sticks
  • 400 grit sand paper
  • Vintage photos
  • Scissors
  • Letter stencils, or a printed out sheet of letters
  • Ruler
  • Artist Brushes
  • Foam Brush, 1 Inch

To begin, I started with a 2×2 piece of pine from the lumber store (which is actually 1.5 inches x 1.5 inches) and cut cubes using a chop saw. If you can find wood blocks at a craft store, score. But I live in a small little town so this had to do.  I gave each block a light sanding until the pine was nice and smooth. 

For these blocks I went with a vintage letter block theme, so I used an old baby book I found at the thrift store and cut the pictures to fit one side of the block. An old story book, or even printed photos you found on the internet would work. I chose to do two photos per block. I measured and cut the pictures to fit right inside the face of the block. Set your cut photos aside. 

I chose colors that complimented my pictures; I am using Elegance, Wanderess and Bliss for the colored sides and Simplicity for the face I will do the letter on. Begin with stirring your paint well, and pouring out a small quantity onto a paper plate or in a cup depending on how many blocks you are doing. Using one of the artist brushes paint the sides, allowing them to dry fully before doing the next color so you don’t smudge your paint. The blocks are small. 

Once the paint has had time to dry, about an hour depending. I am going to glue on my photos using Mod Podge. Using a clean artist brush I apply the Mod Podge to the side I will apply the photo, I followed no pattern as I really liked the mismatched look. Apply it to the entire side, and set the photo on top. Once the picture is where you want it apply a thin coat immediately over top of the photo and allow it to dry. This stuff dries fairly quickly, but you do want it completely dry before moving on to the stenciling. 

I have all my blocks dried and ready for some lettering. I used the classic Alphabet font (ABC etc.) for these blocks that I traced, but the possibilities are endless with font styles and words. Just be sure your font size fits on your block. You can also print out a sheet of letters using Word and apply them as you did the photos. I applied my stencil to the side I painted with Simplicity. Using Country Chic Paint Liquorice I paint the letters. Allow your letters to dry. 

Now that the blocks have completely dried I am going to give them extra durability using Country Chic Paint Clear Coat using a foam brush. This allows for a nice thin application. I even went over the side with the picture to give it a uniform appearance. 

Lots of waiting for paint to dry, but…allow the clear coat to dry fully. 

Next part is optional to give my blocks a vintage appearance I am going to use Antiquing Wax and cheese cloth. This will give the blocks a well loved, antique look, like they have just been found in the bottom of an old toy chest. Using a piece of cheese cloth I rub some of the wax onto the corners and edges of the blocks, places where wear would naturally occur. Buff out the wax and apply more if you want it darker. I found a little went a long way. 

Now your blocks are finished! These can be gifted to a new addition, or you can change up the designs and lettering for Halloween, Thanksgiving, or even Christmas!

To see more DIY tutorials, click here.

Leave a comment below to tell us what you think of these vintage-inspired letter blocks!

Tonia {Boho Chic Design}

I am the owner of a little home decor business in Paris, Ontario I opened Mother’s Day last year. It all started with a sign I made for my mom and the business took off from there! I specialize in hand painted signs and hand made decor items. Recently, since joining the Country Chic Paint family, I have moved into refinishing furniture using the paint line!

Make sure to check out Tonia’s Facebook page!



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