/ / / DIY Harry Potter Directional Sign Part 1

DIY Harry Potter Directional Sign Part 1

Cricut Crafts | DIY Wooden Signs | Harry Potter Crafts | Harry Potter Party Ideas | Vinyl, Foil & Stencil Material

Learn how I created this Harry Potter directional sign for a friend’s Harry Potter-themed wedding. I created the signs using paint, vinyl, cardstock and stencils.

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Harry Potter wooden directional sign set in a large plant pot outside.

Hello Crafty Friends! This past September, one of our good friends got married and they celebrated with an all-out Harry Potter-themed wedding! It was beautiful! It was held in the evening at a huge library and they had so many incredible details throughout the wedding. From bouquets made from Harry Potter book pages to individual wands for everyone, the wedding was magical.

When they asked me to help out making signs for the reception, I was super excited to help. They asked me to create a Honeydukes sign for the desert table, a Three Broomsticks sign for the bar and finally a large directional sign for the lobby. 

Directional sign with wooden signs for places in the Harry Potter world.

Overall I love how this sign turned out! It was a labor of love, and once the design was created, it took two weeks to create all of the signs during my baby’s nap times. My husband helped figure out how it would stand up – it ended up being 8 feet tall! – and how we would transport it to the wedding – which was out of town.

I thought I would share how I made each sign and how we assembled this massive project. I’m splitting this up into two posts so it isn’t as long – but even so, these are two very long posts, but there are lots of pictures! Enjoy!

How to Create a Directional Sign

Choosing the Places

The first step was to come up with the places we wanted to include on the sign. I worked with my friend and his fiancée to create a list of places from the Harry Potter world. The list included more places than we intended to include so I had some flexibility when it came time to making them.

Below are the places we ended up including in our directional sign:

  • Hogsmeade
  • Hogwarts Express
  • Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes
  • Personalized Wedding Sign
  • Knockturn Alley
  • Quality Quidditch Supplies
  • Diagon Alley
  • Hogwarts
  • Gringotts Bank
  • Ollivanders

Directional sign with wooden signs for places in the Harry Potter world.

Pre-Cut Wood Signs

Next, I needed to find wooden signs to decorate. I had seen several directional signs on Pinterest with different themes and most looked to be made from hand cut wood in the shape of arrows. I didn’t have the tools or equipment to cut my own wooden signs, so I deciHP Dded it would be easiest to purchase the pre-made wooden signs.

I’m SO glad I went this route of using pre-cut wood signs. I went to Michaels, Joann Fabrics and Hobby Lobby searching for wooden signs. When I made this sign, years ago, they didn’t have as many wooden blanks as they do now. Most of the signs we found were seasonal painted signs that I painted over.

Using pre-made signs meant every sign was completely different and unique. The result was a mis-matched, hodge-podge, directional sign that I think fits perfectly in the world of Harry Potter.

I found the best wooden signs from Michaels! We found two Halloween signs on sale that were perfect. One had a spinning element that I thought would be great for Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes and another had a broom attached to it – perfect for Quality Quidditch Supplies.

Various wooden signs lay on a table; some are painted, all of them are different sizes.

Creating a Plan

Once I had all of my wooden signs purchased, I arranged them on the floor in the order I thought they looked best. I took a picture and uploaded this into Photoshop and scaled it to size. I was then able to add the text designs on top of the picture in Photoshop to and create the designs and eventually the patterns I would print or turn into SVG cut files.

You do not need to use Photoshop and could instead just take measurements and size your patterns and cut files to fit the size of your signs in Microsoft Word or in your cutting machine software like Cricut Design Space.

Stencils made from vinyl lay next to finished wooden signs and a laptop.

Supplies Used

These are the main supplies I used to create my signs. I used different methods for creating each sign that I describe under each sign’s section of this post.

Directional sign with wooden signs for places in the Harry Potter world.

Preparing the Signs

After purchasing all of the random wooden signs from various craft stores, I needed to paint them and, in some cases, alter them a bit. The wooden witch sign I bought needed to have the legs removed. I had found a bag of 2″ wooden planks from Hobby Lobby which needed to be glued together to create the Hogsmeade and Knockturn Ally signs. After the signs were assembled and made into the right shape, I painted some of them using acrylic paint.

Various wooden signs lay on a table; some are painted, all of them are different sizes.

Each sign was created a little differently. For some of them, I used my Cricut Explore and either cut the wording out of vinyl or cut it out from stencil material to then use with paint. A few of the signs I made by simply printing out the design onto printer paper and using a pencil transfer method.

If you are wondering where the designs for each sign came from, I created almost all of them in Photoshop using different fonts. It was a little tricky finding the right fonts to use, so I’ve tried to include the fonts I chose in each sign description. I purchased an SVG file from an Etsy shop called, Vertical Designs Photo, that included the SVG files for Olivander’s sign and the Gringott’s logo. (*this SVG file is no longer available on Etsy)

Stencils cut from vinyl lay next to finished signs and a laptop.

The Signs

HOGSMEADE

For the Hogsmeade sign, I created the stencil by cutting out the design from cardstock on my Cricut machine. I had to do this in two pieces and then tape them together to make the stencil – at this point I didn’t have a mat long enough to cut the whole thing at once. After the stencil was made, I laid it on the wooden sign and traced it with a Sharpie. I then then filled it in with black acrylic paint. Super easy! It had a rough look which was exactly what I wanted for this sign. I purposefully tried to be heavy handed with the paint in some areas and lighter in others.

A cardstock stencil lays above a rough wooden sign.

The stencil is traced on the wooden sign using black Sharpie.The hogsmeade sign is filled in with black acrylic paint.

HOGWARTS EXPRESS

Fonts Used: Athelas and Avenir

For the Hogwarts Express sign, I cut everything out of Cricut vinyl. The vinyl worked well on this sign because the wood was smooth. I used scraps of vinyl I already had in my stash so the white and black vinyl on this sign were actually outdoor vinyl and a little glossy. The gold vinyl was from a Metallic Cricut Sampler Pack.

Red wooden sign that reads Hogwarts Express with 9 3/4 on the left side.

WEASLEYS’ WIZARD WHEEZES

Font Used: Lumos Latino (I added the stars to the “W”s)

This sign was SO FUN to create!! I hadn’t originally intended to include Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, but when I found this Halloween sign at Michaels, it seemed perfect! The little wooden square in the sign turned around from “IN” to “OUT”. I changed it to go from one side of the Weasley logo to the other.

Halloween sign that reads The Witch is In with witch feet dangling down from it.

After removing the witches legs, I painted the sign orange and kept the black border. Since I didn’t have purple vinyl, I painted this sign. Transferring the pattern onto the wooden sign was done using the pencil-transfer method. I printed the wording out onto printer paper, covered the back with pencil, and then traced the wording onto the wooden board. You can see this method used on my DIY Watermelon Sign – it works really well and is inexpensive!

The words are painted on the sign following pencil lines.

A light pencil outline on an orange wooden sign.

After transferring the words, I painted the sign using purple acrylic paint. I added a fun border to the top and bottom of the sign that I saw on a lot of the Weasleys’ posters and products from Harry Potter World. 

A fun zig zag border with stars is added around the orange wooden sign.

I created the spinning logo by cutting the two sides of the logo out of orange and purple cardstock on my Cricut and then gluing them down.

Wizards are cut from cardstock and added to the spinning element of the wooden sign.

A cardstock purple arrow is added to the sign, it is jagged and dimensional on the sign.

The arrow was also created using my Cricut. I cut the arrow out of chip board, painted it purple, and then adhered it to the sign using foam tape so the arrow was raised.

The rotating piece of wood shows the purple sign with an orange wizard.

The rotating piece of wood shows the orange sign with a purple wizard.

This is one of my favorite signs. I love that the sign is not a perfect rectangle and has so much personality. I never would have been able to create a shape like this or have the spinning logo if I hadn’t found this Halloween sign. It worked out so well! And now I have two wooden witches legs I’ll have to find a new home for :)

Orange and purple wooden sign reads Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes.

Personalized Wedding Sign

Font Used: Qaskin Black

I thought it would be fun to include a directional sign for the wedding with the couple’s name on it. For this sign I used a plain rectangular board and lightly painted it white to look distressed. The inspiration for this sign was Fleur Delacour’s wedding dress from the movie, which was white and black.

Rectangular wooden board.

White distressed wooden has the couple's name with an arrow in black cursive.

I created the words using my Cricut and Black Cricut Vinyl.

Personalized wedding sign made from a white distressed board and black vinyl.

Knockturn Alley

Fonts Used: Anglican Text

The Knockturn Alley sign turned out to be trickier than I expected. I couldn’t figure out how to create the hand on the end. After a little trial and error, I ended up finding an image of a pointed finger online. I used the Print then Cut feature on my Cricut to cut this out of white cardstock. Using the general outline of the pointed finger, I then cut out 8 layers of chipboard. I glued the layers of chipboard together, adding the white printed image to the top, and then glued this entire thing to the top edge of my wooden sign.

A chipboard finger painting is added to the end of a wooden board.

To cover the seam, I placed the cuff over it that I created from painted chipboard. The words “Knockturn Alley” were cut from off-white vinyl using my cutting machine.

A piece of white painted chipboard is used as a cuff for the sign.

A black sign with a white hand pointing reads "Knockturn Alley".

Continue to Part Two

This post covers the first five signs. In the next post, Directional Sign Part Two, I’ll show how I created the final five signs and how we assembled everything. If you’ve read this entire post so far, you can probably tell how much fun I had creating these signs. I don’t often work with wooden signs, so it was a nice change of pace. My Cricut Explore also got a good workout and I became more comfortable using vinyl and stencil material with my machine. 

Continue to Harry Potter Directional Sign Part 2 

Happy Crafting! -Kim

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3 Comments

    1. Thank you! I don’t have the SVG cut files I used available but under the description for each sign I do list the fonts I used and if I used any SVG cut files purchased from Etsy. Since I made this over six years ago some of the specific files I used are no longer available but there are similar cut files on Etsy. If you are using a Cricut they also have some fun Harry Potter images (including the castle, a broom etc) that could be used on the signs! Let me know if you have any other questions! I hope you have fun creating your sign! :)

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