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American Telephone & Telegraph - Bell System Wall Art Sign

repurpose, wire reel, wire spool, sign, Christmas decor,

Like a year ago I scored this wire reel from an electric company that was closing its doors and they were getting rid of the many reels they had accumulated over the years.

At the time I was trying to organize or spruce up the backyard. I thought the wire reel might be a good option for a table or even a planter.

Anyway, the reel was brought to the backyard and sadly I did nothing with it!

I used it just a couple of times, like in the post right HERE. and as a prop to take pictures...

wood, repurpose, wire spool

Other than that, it sat there in the backyard until recently, when my husband disassembled it because he was getting tired of moving it from side to side every time he cut the grass.

two round pieces and lots of slats

The exposure to the elements gave it a nice patina. ;)

All the pieces were there in the garage when I saw the beautiful Antique Telephone Advertising Image from Angie @ Knick of Time, well, she has lots of beautiful images, you should really go and check the good collection she has, and hey, they are free for you to download and use for your own projects!

Anyhow, as soon as I saw the image, the idea of making a big sign appeared.

Enlarging an image with blockposters, cutting paper machine, paper

The image got enlarged at Blockposters, it's very easy, you upload the image and then the site gives you the image as big as you want it, in many pieces.
Using a paper cutter I trimmed the small edges each page comes with.

The whole image was put together with pieces of tape...

Transferring an image to wood with carbon paper

Centered on the wooden circle, and using carbon paper, the image was transferred onto the wood.

Painting image on wire reel, acrylic black paint

The design was then painted with regular black acrylic paint.

vintage Telephone sign on round part or wire reel, wall art

It takes its time, but I'm now used to do this. I tried to stay within the lines, however, it's not perfect.

American companies, bell company, wire reel, sign, telegraph,

I think this was the perfect surface for this image!

bell System ad, vintage sign, wall art, round Christmas wall art

Local and Long Distance calls - Bell systems - telephone sign

The missing pieces of wood and the rusty spots add to the vintage look.

I even hot glued the rusty cups -hardware- the reel used to have. They were the ones that gave my husband a big headache when he was disassembling the whole thing. :)

Bell System Advertisement sign - DIY - wire spool, repurposed project,

And hey, it looks really nice all dressed up for the holidays.
Can you guys guess where I'm going to place it in my home?

Find it out at my Christmas Home Tour right HERE, and
in a different place during the Spring Home Tour right HERE.
American Telephone & Telegraph Co. And Associated Companies

For more DIY Home d├ęcor check these out:

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  1. This is amazingly beautiful! I love the design and the way you decorated it! :)

  2. Such a great use of a wire reel. I think it looks perfect! It would look too contrived if your lettering was perfect, the way it is makes it look genuinely old.

  3. Your own printer might have the capabilities of printing something like this. Check it out! What a fun project. My family had a large one of these reels that we used in the back yard as a table. My dad sunk it in the backyard by removing the grass underneath. That way, we could scoot up to the table, and it wasn't too tall.

  4. This piece is amazing. I love how you made it and used carbon paper. I'm going to pick some of that paper up. I thought you were going to make a clock out of that board but the bell sign is beautiful

    1. Hmmm you're giving me a good idea for the other round piece, thanks Vanessa!

  5. That looks just wonderful, Cristina. I love circular signs and yours is no exception! Coincidentally today I was unpacking some things in my workshop, from my move a year ago, and found the curved boards from the center of an old reel just like that (you show them off to the side in one of your photos). I have to figure out something to do with the curved boards, have you used yours?

    1. Hi Julie, I love those boards you're talking about. They look nice, but because of the round shape is kind of hard to find ways on how to repurpose them.

      I was creating a hot cocoa station a couple days ago and needed a sign. Well, the first pieces of wood I found were those, so I use one of those, it was the perfect size and I didn't bother about the curved appearance!

  6. This turned out so amazing, and I'm thrilled to see the creative way you used my antique graphic! By the way, you can also have images printed as large engineering prints at Staples for just a few bucks, and it saves you from having to print and tape together all the individual pages!

    1. Thanks Angie! Next time I'm gonna go the Staples way. ;) Thanks!

  7. I LOVE everything about this, Cristina!! I knew you'd bring something amazing to the party! XOXO

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