Friday, October 7, 2011

Theatre Room Knock-off

The morning I found out I had been selected to compete in Crafting with the Stars, I frantically started flipping through the pages of the Ballard Designs catalog I had in my magazine basket, looking for an idea for my “knock-off.”

When I came upon this page…I knew I had my project.


One of my sisters has a super fun family room that is painted black with a filmstrip wallpaper border and several of those cardboard movie-character cut-outs standing around. Knowing that I happened to have her name for our family’s Christmas gift exchange, I decided she needed a little more movie “bling” for her walls!

The cost for this project was about $30, compared to over $300 if you bought all these pieces from Ballard! Here’s what I used:

  • One 4’ x 8’ of quarter-inch luaun. Any smooth piece of wood/plywood would do as well.

Clapboard: one piece 11” x 12”; two pieces 1” x 12”

Theatre sign: 30” x 10”

Ticket sign: 12” x 24”

Star: 18” square

Movie reels: 24” square; 18” square; 12” square (two each)

  • One 1” diameter dowel
  • About 7’ of narrow molding
  • Stencils of some sort (I cut mine on a Silhouette)
  • Various paint (silver, gold, metallic black, off-white, black, red, tan)
  • One binding post
  • Miscellaneous screws, painter’s tape, etc.

I cut all of my signs using a table saw or a jigsaw.

CWTS 001

Thankfully I have a very good friend who also has much better tools than I do; at his shop we used a bandsaw to cut out the movie reels. TIP: Use a screw to hold the front and back pieces of the reels together, so you can cut them out at the same time. This can also be done with a jigsaw, but your circles may wobble a little!

sewingarmoire 014-1

Yes, I know this because I cut the largest inner circles of the big reel with a jigsaw (after drilling a pilot hole first so I had a place to start). Forstner bits were used to cut the smaller circles, but they only go so big! So yes, my circles may wobble a bit.


I used layers of paint to give the effect of metal reels. It was fun to play with gold, silver, bronze, etc. to get the look I wanted.

I cut my 1” dowel into one-inch sections to separate the front and back pieces of the reels. There is generally one center piece and three or four pieces around the circumference for stability. I liked the three-dimensional look far better than just a flat circle on the wall!

I designed all my sign lettering on the Silhouette Designer. I used a combination of stenciling (painting in the open space where your lettering should go) and reverse-stenciling (painting over vinyl or cardstock lettering, and then removing that lettering to expose the unpainted surface underneath) to paint all the words on my signs.

mediterranean 001-1

I didn’t use just any numbers on the ticket…I used my sister’s anniversary!

mediterranean 023-1

I used painter’s tape to mark off the stripes on the Ticket sign, and I “pounced” the red paint on to get clean lines.

mediterranean 026-1

The ticket sign really came together once the curved corners were cut out. I traced around a circle to get the look I wanted, and then I cut the corners out with a jigsaw. I hand-painted the border on as the last step (well…the last step before distressing and glazing, anyway).

I framed the theatre sign with some narrow molding I cut and glued directly to the Theatre board. It should have taken just eight 45-degree angle cuts for the trim…it took me about 17! I was glad I had bought a little extra for “just in case.”


The clapboard was a fun little project. I cut the ends of the two 1”x12” pieces of wood at an angle using a miter saw (a handsaw and a miter box would work just as well). This is necessary so that the clappers will actually open! I taped them together on the back so the angle of those little chevron stripes would match up perfectly.

mediterranean 002-1

The bottom of the clapper strip is glued directly to the board; the top strip is attached with a specialty fastener called a “binding post.” I couldn’t find one at Home Depot, but Lowe’s has them (it cost about $0.80).


The star was the brainchild of my tool-handy friend! I printed out a star from my computer, and then I placed the top point of the star at the top center point of my board. Then I used a yardstick to extend the lines on the star onto my board—that way there was no tricky angle-measuring! I cut it out with my jigsaw as well.


It is difficult to tell from the photographs, but the little movie camera is actually on a separate 4” circle that I painted and then glued to the star. Just another way to add dimension and interest to the piece.

Whew! There you have it…the complete theatre room set.

IMG_2772 copy

I didn’t wait until Christmas to give my sister her present. I didn’t think it sounded like much fun to read about it on my blog and not get to see it in person! So when I saw her this past weekend, I gave her a “sneak peak” of my Crafting with the Stars post and brought out all the pieces while she was reading.


It was great fun! I think she enjoyed celebrating “Christmas in October.”

I know I did!

Thanks for wading through this very long tutorial with me! ********************************************************

This project featured at House of Hepworths.Link


Linking up here and The DIY Show Off.


eleven-o-one said...

wow! did that take about a year? That is amazing. You are very creative. Your sister is a lucky girl! I think I'm going to start calling you Korrie "Tim Taylor" Red Hen Home. All those power tools...Can't wait to see the "upcycled" project. I'm pulling for you!

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

Can you pick my name for the next Christmas Exchange? : ) You did a fantastic job on this, Korrie! I'll bet your sister just loves it. said...

WOW! You did an amazing job. Do you need another sister? lol
~Debra xxx
Capers of the vintage vixens

Sandi @ The Primitive Skate said...

A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!! Oh my word! this is soooo aweosme! I LOVE it all! You are so creative. Thanks for sharing.

Jennifer Jill Araya said...

What a wonderful Christmas present! Congratulations on making it to round 2 -- can't wait to see what you've got planned for that project. :)

Tamra said...

You rock Little Red Hen!

Emily said...

This is really brilliant, Korrie! Well done :-) You've achieved a really fun look there


Rose @ Confessions of a Curbshopaholic said...

Fabulous! So much better than the catalog version. Thanks for the great tutorials too.

Valley Primitives Gift Shoppe said...

Wow, what an amazing gift!! I love all of it!

bj said...

This is the COOLEST thing I've ever seen...the things you made, giving them to her NOW...all of it is sooo COOL.
You, my dear little friend, are so talented and you have the kindest heart and sweetest spirit.

Gayle said...

Great job Korrie - Totally awesome! I have a feeling you're going to be the grand winner in SYTYCC competition!

Homeroad said...

Korie!!! Fabulous! Better than the originals! You go girl!

Gypsy Heart said...

Amazing! I don't know how you think of these things...such a creative mind and immense talent. I know your sister is absolutely thrilled!

I don't have any woodworking talent or tools but your instructions are very clear and easy to follow. Makes me wish I could try one of the signs.
Thanks so much for sharing!


Christine said...

Truly phenomenal! Very impressive--job well done...

Deborah March said...

OH-MY-GOSH, did you SLEEP at ALL this week? FABULOUS!!

Tina@WhatWeKeep said...

Great job, Korrie !

Mitzi Curi said...

Wow, you are one clever gal! I love your project, and your blog is fabulous! I'm going to spend a little time here reading some older posts....

Julie said...

Really cute! Turned out great.

Jennifer said...

I love it! I bought the ticket sign online and now you've got me thinking......

Great job, I love it all!


Suzanne@Meridian Road said...

That is such a fantastic project, Korrie! I didn't guess that it was yours, but I voted for it!
Your sister is so lucky!

Cristy @ Art•ing Shed•quarters said...

How clever! We have a movie theme in the family room, as well. We bought some reels and I always "intended" to knock off a couple movie ticket signs...
You pulled off the whole shebang! Looks awesome!!

debbie refreshrestyle said...

You have so much talent, this is amazing!

Beth said...

You did an excellent job in recreating the theater theme here! LOVE that ticket sign and the reels!

Unknown said...

This is really good. It would have taken ages for me to do it.
Well done

Unknown said...

Very Cool! Love it!!!

Anonymous said...

Your sister is a very lucky lady! You did an amazing job! God bless x

Cottage In The Sun said...

Wow! That's fabulous!

Angi said...

That is amazing! I have been wanting to do that but didn't know where to I do. Thankss so much!

(please follow me back at

xoxo Angi

Janet said...

I love every little detail that you added to your signs! You're sister is so lucky! Great job. :)

Robin Johnson said...

You are amazing! I love it.

Honey at 2805 said...

I second that motion! You are amazing! What a big idea!

I appreciate you linking to Potpourri Friday! You are such a big help in making it a success!

Unknown said...

Thanks for your comment on my blog. Kids can actually be great helpers! I LOVE your theater room makeover. That looks great!!

Sherry @ No Minimalist Here said...

This is amazing! What a creative and fabulous gift for your sister. Thank you for linking your projects to the Open House Party.

Vickie @ Ranger 911 said...

Your sister must be THRILLED with her prestnt! I love signs of any kind, and yours are fabulous!

Allison @ House of Hepworths said...

You've been featured at my weekly link party - Hookin Up with HoH!

Feel free to stop on by and grab a button if you'd like. :)


Allison @ House of Hepworths

gail@My Repurposed Life said...

Korrie! you are so clever and creative! Not to mention so very talented!
love all of these but the clap board the best!
ps catching you this week

Deneen@dreaming-n-color said...

OMG I was just told about this! I just did one too! I am a new follower!!! Come see mine too!

Laura @ duke manor farm said...

You have just inspired me beyond belief! I am getting ready to makeover my media room and some of this decor is PERFECT!!

Unknown said...

Fabulous! You really did an amazing job here! I love the idea of having a movie reel, a film clapper, a ticket, and all of those items on the wall that truly correspond to movies. It really adds a cinematic appeal on the room!

Louisa Hemstreet