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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Howdy!

I recently just finished carving a sign for a buddy to propose to his girlfriend and he wants me to stain around the letters but not stain in them. Does anyone have an easy and fast ways to get this done? I have thought about using tape but I do not think that it will keep the stain out. I do not have a picture of the sign handy. I forgot to take a picture before I took off to work this morning.

Thank you in advance!
 

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photos of the sign - type of wood - depth of carving will help
with more accurate feedback.
did you carve this by hand or CNC router ??
(and time frame to get this project done).

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I carved this by hand. The depth is probably about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch deep. The friend picked out pine. My time frame is till the 16th, so Saturday. I am thinking of just taking my time and using a little paint brush to get close to the the letters but not go over them.
 

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ok - this is a pretty indepth project to tackle correctly.
for a small project like this that will only be used for a few minutes,
I would tell your friend that since it is soft pine and small graphics,
it is out of your skill set to do what he wants.
option "B" would be to do a dark stain and paint the letters with paint.
you can try all your options on similar material and see what works
the best for you with what you have.
soft pine is notorious for "wicking" stain into and out of carved graphics.
practice with some samples before doing the real deal.

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ok - this is a pretty indepth project to tackle correctly.
for a small project like this that will only be used for a few minutes,
I would tell your friend that since it is soft pine and small graphics,
it is out of your skill set to do what he wants.
option "B" would be to do a dark stain and paint the letters with paint.
you can try all your options on similar material and see what works
the best for you with what you have.
soft pine is notorious for "wicking" stain into and out of carved graphics.
practice with some samples before doing the real deal.
I was lurking this thread to see what those more experienced with finishing had to say, and was thinking pretty much exactly the same thing. "Option B" was my answer. Paint would even give you a bit more options (colors). Seems way too much work to do anything else.

P.S. Good luck to your buddy!
 

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I did this exact thing some years ago, and I got bleed into the letters no matter how I did it. I ended up painting the letters then staining it. Turned out nice doing it this way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you everyone for the help and suggestions. I ended up staining it and trying to be as careful as possible. Then I went back and ended up painting the letters. I think it turned out pretty good for my first time doing something like this. Hopefully I get to make more soon.
 
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