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Veneer Monogram Art

Turn wood veneer into personalized artwork you can stain to complement the decor of any room.

Framed veneer monograms

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

1 weekend

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Table saw or circular saw and straightedge (optional)
  • Handsaw
  • Clamps
  • Painter’s tape
  • 120-grit and 180-grit sandpaper
  • Tape measure
  • Utility or crafts knife
  • Ruler or straightedge
  • Steam iron


  • 1/2 x 4 x 4 birch plywood, #6201
  • 12-in x 4-ft red oak iron-on edging, #40380
  • 2 - 5/8 x 36 square dowels, #27695
  • Self-leveling picture hangers, #52716
  • Rust-Oleum Ultimate wood stain, Willow, Weathered Gray, Driftwood, Mineral Green
  • Polyurethane finish, satin

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

Missing anything? Shop Online


If you don’t have a table saw or circular saw to cut the plywood panels, ask a Lowe’s associate to cut each panel 17 inches square.

Cut the Monogram Letters

Step 1

Download Veneer Monogram Letters and print the letters of your choice. If your computer has a selection of type fonts you prefer, use it to print letters in the size and style of your choice. Downloadable letters measure roughly 8 inches square to fit letter-size paper.

Step 2

Unroll enough veneer to accommodate each letter you printed. Tape a letter pattern to the veneer with the longest edges running the same direction as the wood grain. Using a straightedge or ruler and a utility or crafts knife with a new blade, cut the straight lines of each letter. Then cut the curved lines freehand. Make several passes to cut through the veneer without cracking or tearing the wood.

Step 3

Sand the edges smooth as needed, wipe clean, and apply a coat of stain (Driftwood shown on the S, Weathered Gray on the H, and Willow on the Q). Repeat this and the previous steps for any additional letters.

Good to Know

Stain choices aren’t limited to traditional wood shades. Ask a Lowe’s associate to see the complete range of stain colors available.

Apply Veneer Letters

Step 1

Cut a 17-inch square from the plywood panel and sand the good face with 120-grit, and then 180-grit sandpaper. Stain the front of the panel (but not the edges) the color of your choice (Mineral Green shown).

Step 2

From the two square dowels, cut four pieces 17-5/8 inches long. Sand them smooth and wipe clean. Along the dowel edge that will be glued to the panel, place a strip of painter’s tape to leave a 1/8-inch strip exposed on that face of the dowel. Trim off the excess tape and repeat for the remaining dowels. Stain the dowels the color of your choice (Weathered Gray shown). After the stain dries, remove the tape.

Step 3

Overlapping monogram letters on a panel

Before attaching letters to the panel, experiment with different looks by temporarily taping letters in place. Decide which letters will be partially covered by or interconnected with others.

Step 4

Turn a steam iron to its highest setting. On the panel, position the letters and lightly tape them in place. Place a thin cotton cloth, such as an old T-shirt, over the first letter and use the iron to heat the adhesive on the back of the veneer until it sticks to the panel. Remove the painter’s tape before heating those portions of the veneer. Repeat for any remaining letters.

Frame the Panel

Step 1

Download the Veneer Monogram Project Diagram for a look at how the frame goes together. Glue and clamp the bare wood strip of the first square dowel to an edge of the panel with one dowel end and the back surface flush with the panel edge and back panel face. The other end should overhang the panel by 5/8 inch. After the glue dries, add a second frame piece with one end touching the overhang on the first piece and the other end again overhanging by 5/8 inch. Repeat for the remaining two frame pieces.

Good to Know

Always glue the bare wood strip to the edge of the plywood for the strongest joint. A stained surface will reduce the ability of glue to hold the pieces together.

Step 2

Touch up the stain as needed and let dry. Then apply two coats of satin polyurethane to the entire project, sanding lightly between coats.

Step 3

Overlapping monogram letters on a panel

If you plan to hang the finished panel, measure to find the center of the panel back about 2 inches from the top. Attach a centered, self-leveling hanger to the back.