A Mailbox with Charm

Updated mailbox painted with acrylic and protection coated.

Mailboxes are often a forgotten part of the landscape and yet are one of the most visited sites in the yard. My mailbox has been an eyesore for years with its peeling paint and weathered post.

I could have gone out and purchased another inexpensive box and left it at that, but the crafty girl inside me said that just wouldn’t do.  I wanted a mailbox that was cheerful and welcoming, that would put a smile on the face of our mail lady or passersby.  Below are the steps I took to create a unique mailbox that will hopefully last another few seasons.

Updated mailbox painted with acrylic and protection coated.


  • Rustoleum Semi-Gloss Spray Paint – Black
  • Sandpaper block – fine
  • Clear Coat Sealant Spray Paint
  • Acrylic Paints  – Colors your choice
  • Chalk 1 piece
  • Pencil
  • Pattern, picture or Words printed to the correct size on standard paper
  • Blue painter’s tape
Remove all hardware

After removing the mailbox from its post, I started my project by removing all the hardware attached, including the latch and flag.

Using fine grit sandpaper I sanded along the areas where paint had peeled to create a smooth surface for my new coat of paint.  I then wiped down the mailbox with a wet cloth to remove all dust and debris.

Freshen up mailbox with paint

I sprayed the box with a thin coat of black Rustoleum, making sure to cover all surfaces including the lip under the mailbox lid.  I allowed this to dry for a few hours.  I applied a second thin coat and allowed it to dry over night.

The next day I searched the web for a nice floral pattern that could be easily painted using acrylic paint and a small brush.  I edited the size of the floral pattern so that it would nicely surround the word Welcome.  I also found a butterfly that I could resize to fit in the picture.  Once I had each piece printed out on the printer I was ready to transfer the images to the mailbox.  I had three separate sheets in my pattern.

Color back with chalk to create pattern

Starting with Welcome, I centered the word on the side of the mailbox that would face outward.  Using painter’s tape I attached only the bottom edge to the mailbox.  I colored the back side of the paper with chalk ensuring to cover all areas that contain the letters.

Once the back was completely chalked I taped the upper edge of the paper to the mailbox.  I then traced the letters using a pencil.  I removed the paper and the outline of the letters appear in chalk.  I could then begin filling the letters with acrylic paint.   I allowed the first coat of this paint to dry, then ran a damp paper towel  over the word to remove the chalk.

Paint inside the chalk lines

The first pass of paint did not have defined edges so a second coat cleaned up the edges.

I repeated this process for the two sheets containing the flowers.  Adding a bit of white to your paint filled brush gives nice highlights and more natural streaking in your leaves.

Edges cleaned up after removing chalk

Once I was satisfied with my painting, I allowed the acrylic to dry for an hour.  I then applied a spray of clear coat to protect the painting.  This coat dried over night and applied a second coat.

One side of flowers done

The mailbox was then ready to mount.

An amateur gardener who loves to watch the garden grow.