Do you need a big clock? Do you have $20? Then you are in for a treat! I needed a big clock for my basement living area. Whenever I would find the perfect one, it would either have a $250 price tag, or roman numerals. I grew up in a tiny town, went to a tiny school. We never discussed roman numerals.
I dare you to try to find wooden numbers. I think it's impossible! The only place I found them was on Etsy, and the biggest they came was 2.5". None to be found at Michael's, Joann's, or Hobby Lobby. Letters a plenty, but not a number in sight. I felt downhearted for one tiny second, until an idea bubble popped up over my head......chipboard and the die cutting machine at my local scrapbook store, Scrapbooks Etc. I bought 4 (12 x 12) sheets of the thickest chipboard they had, and spent the next 30 minutes die cutting my numbers. I chose two different styles, one was 4" tall, the other was 3". I cut 4 of each number because I knew I wanted to stack them up to give them some dimension.
Using my skills in magic, I was able to squeak it out of 4 sheets of chipboard ($1 apiece) and the fee for my die cutting time in the lab was $2.50. Quite the bargain.
Once I got home, I glued each stack of 4 together with Elmer's glue, covering the number completely with a thin layer of glue, and pressing them together really well.
Once they were really dry, I painted them black with regular craft paint, making sure to paint the edges as well. No need to paint the backside. By the time I finished painting the last number black, the first ones were dry, and I used a silver, metallic craft paint and painted over the black. The silver paint is kind of thin, but one coat was all they needed.
I decided to take it a step further and use some fine sand paper. It took off a little bit of the silver to expose some of the black, and I roughed up the edges a bit. Before I used the sandpaper, they really did look like zinc, but I was going for OLD zinc, which is why I slightly distressed them. Here they are side by side, regular and distressed, so you can get an idea of which finish you like best.
The clock hands were found at Joann's. They have a $20 price tag, but I used my 50% off coupon. The finish was a shiny black, but I painted them the same way I did the numbers. First with the black, then the metallic silver. I also slightly distressed them with the fine sandpaper.
That didn't take long at all, and it was time to assemble on the wall. (that rhymes!) The hanging method is one of the best parts about this project, besides the cheapness and easiness. So brilliant for people living in rentals or apartments. You just use this:
And here is the clock on my basement wall. No more excuses for the kids not to be in bed on time!