how to Gallery Wrap and trim signs with old vintage wood

I’m always trying to create new & unique art using canvas & this is my latest creation/series. The canvas is actually modge P. ( glued) & stapled to a 3/4 inch thick wood board. To achieve a  realistic & vintage frame “look” i  pulled out my tools, air nailer, glue ,ruler, coffee cup (with a splash of cream & sugar) and  an armful of  various old wood trim i re-purposed and ……viola ! Instant Vintage custom Frame.

DSCN8404 DSCN8426 vintage south carolina vintage obx sign vintage beach sign medical marijuana butcher shop baltimore sign Gallery Wrap Rear mounting canvas art virginia

This   canvas for our art ,at this writing,   was  Printed   ( by our fav printer sub-El-Co Color Labs, Inc. USA.)   on a  UV printer in Fine Art Mode on   bright white 65 %poly / 35% cotton (Acid Free) material.

This video shows the process Zeke uses to mount the canvas to a substrate, 3/4 inch pine wood, and attach custom cut re purposed wood trim to give each piece a “rare & unique faux antique ” look.

Gallery Wrap how to video by Zeke

Custom Surf board beach house Signs

Zeke recently received a request for a custom vintage surfboard sign and I thought the process would make a neat but short post for other folks in the market for unique gift ideas.

This creative process started with her email, “She has quite a mix of styles in her condo so I’m not too worried about matching anything specific.  The base color of the walls is cream with one maroon accent wall and 2 green accents walls. I trust your judgment “.  This client actually had stayed at her friend’s beach house and wanted to thank her by having me create a surfboard sign that I would then drop ship to Virginia Beach-one of our fav vacation destinations!

The first step in having Zeke create a piece is seeing the client’s vision, size & timeframe. Next a word doc is sent I use that clearly lays out the few but simple steps for the creation to shipping of your piece.

Beach house Sara

After the client, Sara, reviews or comments on the sketch the process begins-Surfs Up! Fabricating the sign from stock ¾ inch pine wood is the first step and involves the following: lumber, power tools, air mailer, wood glue, safety glasses, wood screws and coffee-not in that order.

Surfboard sign making 101
Surfboard makingSurfboard making Surfboard sign making 101


The next step, after priming and painting the surfboard sign is laying out the text-design to fit the piece and the vision of Sara, the client. Colors are all hand mixed to give the sign an old retro feel.

Beach House signBeach House signBeach House sign

The final step in hand making a custom piece is to “age” the newly painted sign. This requires hand sanding with wet sand paper to achieve an old worn look, not just a quick scratchy looking finish using power tools-which we have a graveyard full of. After hundreds of vintage signs, Zeke has perfected his own style of transforming a “fresh” or new sign into an old antique looking piece.

Check out this process on our Youtube video.

Last step in MSH (making Sara Happy) was taking and sending final images of her “rare & unique faux antique sign “by Zees Antique Signs. Then we settled the balance & shipping and off the sent on the Brown truck to its owner in VBC. Feedback from Sara after her friend received the surprise thank you gift was super happy and I am looking forward to creating her a 3rd custom Zeke piece down the road.

beach house sign

surfboard signobx surfboard sign




vintage surfboard

Making surfboard signs is an unusual and large project. Here are a few samples of past vintage surfboard style signs I have created for folks or sold online via Etsy or my Ebay shop.

Sign paints and brushes=surfs up !

surfboard signs DSCN6915 DSCN7402 Sailor Jerry surf board SurfBoard7-10.2 - Copy
ebay link
Zekes Antique Signs Etsy Store Link
Zekes Antique Signs Etsy Store Link

Recent custom vintage signs by zekesantiquesigns 2015

Here are some recent custom vintage signs by  zekesantiquesigns 2015.

the Sweetwater Market sign was for a non profit food bank in Georgia the manager wanted done by us to give the entrance to their facility a retro and friendly look to the facade.

Jay, the manager wrote after seeing the final photo of the piece “We love it and are excited to get it installed!

feedback like his and others encourage Zeke to create more “rare & unique faux antique” signs.


vintage market sign
vintage market sign
vintage market sign
vintage market sign
vintage market sign
vintage market sign custom made for non-profit Georgia

This wolf creek signs was one of several the client has commissioned us to make for his outdoor bar bq and bourbon “tasting” deck overlooking his creek by the cabin his family loves & owns in the mountains of Georgia.

custom made  cabin sign
custom made georgia cabin sign


georgia cabin sign
georgia cabin sign

This Scott DJ sign was a sign for an old college friend who graduated with the buyer from Frostburg College, Maryland. We drop shipped the sign to the recipient and all is well.

custom music dj sign
custom dj sign gift


A restaurant near Salisbury Maryland had us create this piece to fit the decor,style and wording for the bar’s decor. The 1/2 Upper Bay Canvasback decoy was hand carved by a Havre de Grace , Maryland ,Carver.

custom decoy sign
custom decoy sign

Baltimore Saloon gets custom Sign Bundle

The Horse You Came in on Saloon ,in Fells Point Maryland, needed a new sign bundle facelift for their entrance door.

custom baltimore bar sign bundle zeke


Eric, the owner, mentioned in an email to me that,” Thanks for everything Zeke!  As I mentioned your work is a big part of my business and proudly so.”


More and more business owners, like the Horse’ , seek out hand painted vintage style signs not only to fit the look & feel of their business but customers appreciate the unique qualities the signs add to their experience.

Eric contacted me about a new bundle a while back and i was more then happy to create several pieces based on his Saloon’s history and decor. As a great repeat customer i knew Eric would be great to work with and appreciative of whatever i came up with.

After delivery of the Horse’s Sign Bundle Eric was generous to treat me to the great bar fare available on their unique menu-go with the Jack Burger & sweet potato fries !

Thanks Eric !

Saloon business  outdoor sign