DIY Go Away Doormat
Searching for the perfect doormat? Make one yourself with this DIY Go Away Doormat project!
Anyone who knows me in real life likely knows that I am not a people person. You would never find me on House Hunters, because I do not like entertaining and rarely have anyone other than family over. I’m very much an introvert, and prefer just cuddling up on the couch with the dogs over doing just about anything else. So while I wanted a doormat outside the front door (mostly to help clean off dog paws), a ‘welcome’ doormat didn’t really seem fitting. A go away doormat however, seemed perfect.
I searched far and wide (okay – I searched on Amazon.ca and like three stores in person) and could not find one that I loved – my best option seemed to be a DIY go away doormat!
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DIY Go Away Doormat Supplies Needed
- Of course, you’re going to need a blank doormat. I got this one on sale at Home Depot but you can also grab one from Amazon.ca
- Silhouette Cutting Machine or an exacto knife – this font is super easy to just cut out by hand
- I used Oracle 813 Vinyl, but contact paper or cardstock (sprayed with adhesive) would work too
- Outdoor paint in the colour of your choice – I believe this is the brand I used, but I picked mine up at Michaels with a 50% off coupon
- Foam paint brush or makeup sponge OR outdoor spray paint
The blank mat I picked up came with this black border, which is a nice little touch on the mat. You could easily recreate this using some painters tape around the edges, or leave it off if it’s not the style you’re going for.
Using Adobe Illustrator (but you could just use the Silhouette Studio program if you have it), I created about six thousand different variations of ‘Go Away’ before settling on my final one. I originally wanted something cursive so it was an elegant way of telling people to go away – but Sean thought it needed to be big and bold. After many, many revisions, this was the winning choice:
Feel free to use this image for your own DIY Go Away doormat!
I cut the image out with my Silhouette Cutting Machine on a 12×24 mat – I prefer the Cricuit 12×24 Cutting Mats because you can find them in 2-packs (which I split with my Mom) for much cheaper than the Silhouette ones.
I used Oracle 813 Stencil Vinyl which has been my favourite vinyl lately for making wooden signs (like this DIY Wooden Pallet Sign I made a few years ago). What I love about this stuff is that it isn’t fully opaque, so you can see your material underneath it and it really helps to get things centered perfectly. Make sure to measure your blank mat to see how much space you have to fit text, then check your measurements again before cutting. Measure twice, cut once! More than once, I’ve had to cut things again because I didn’t follow this simple rule.
I left about half an inch of space around the inside black border, so the semi see-through vinyl was great for helping me place it perfectly. Once your vinyl is cut, pull out the inside of the letters as this is where your paint will go.
Since I only had 3 letters with inside pieces, I didn’t bother with transfer tape – I just placed the vinyl down on my mat, and carefully placed the inside of the O and As by hand. If your design is more intricate, you’ll want to use transfer paper to put it on the mat. I like this transfer tape as it has a grid which makes placement super easy.
Once your vinyl is placed – you get to start painting! This is by far the least fun part. Since the mat was so ‘hairy’, the stencil wasn’t stuck down incredibly well, which leaves a lot of room for paint to seep under the vinyl stencil. The best way to do this is using a foam dabber brush or makeup sponge and applying very, very light ‘dabs’ of paint. When you dip your brush in the paint, wipe some off on a paper plate or napkin before your first dab. Then, dab in an up and down motion so you’re not swirling any paint below the stencil.
It will take you longer, but the end result will be so much better. This is how my DIY Go Away Doormat looked after the first coat of dabbing:
After two more coats, it was starting to look much better:
There were still a few more spots to touch up, and then it was all done! I removed my vinyl immediately after finishing my third coat and paint to reveal nice, crisp lines.
I love my new DIY Go Away Doormat! So far, it’s been out for a few weeks and the paint is still crisp – but it definitely needs to have some dog hair cleaned off of it. Somehow cat hair too, even though the cats don’t go outdoors…
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Hey there! I'm Meredith, a twenty-something home decor, DIY and lifestyle blogger & creator who dreams of living in the sunny south. You can almost always find me with a coffee in my hand, a dog at my side, and a donut in my mouth.