hand painted sign thumb
I have a fun new video to share today and a BIG giveaway with two chances to win!

A sign painting tutorial has been much requested! Claire my wonderful assistant teaches the sign painting classes  here at the store and helps me with all of the fun graphics that you see on the paint labels and the craft kits!  Claire joins me this week to help with some sign painting tips! Find out more about Claire’s sign painting and graphic design services on Claire’s new website! 

bohemian blue qt

Before I get into that I wanted to tell you what happened to me about an hour ago, I wasn’t going to share this,   because it’s humbling, but it was  also very encouraging to me and I hope it will be for you too.

As many of you know this year has been challenging, I almost lost my Mom and  I made a big decision to transition to a new paint line. you can read all about that here.

The end of the year is a time for reflection, this year especially because January marks 20 years that my shop has been open!

After 20 years you might assume that business is great but this year has been one of the hardest.  I try to focus on the many blessings I have and give the worries to God, but this morning I woke up struggling with worry again… I know I’m not alone , many of you write and tell me your stories, I can often relate more than you might think.

Here’s what happened this afternoon, I went to the thrift store  looking for a piece of furniture to paint for the next video, this video was something I agreed to do months ago,  anxious to get caught up and scratch this obligation off of my ‘worry list’ I ran over  in search of something for my new milk paint video after shipping orders at the post office.

I left the thrift store with a wonderful $10 table in my car, so big that it was hard to see out the back.

I  put the car in reverse and backed out of the parking lot past three stalls  because I couldn’t see well enough to do it the proper way. When I finally found room to turn my car forward there was a sheriff waiting stopped in the middle of the street.

I saw him and my heart started racing,  I thought to myself , oh no was that illegal? the last thing I need is a ticket! I tried to casually roll by the sheriff praying he wouldn’t stop me as he motioned for me to roll my window down….

me-“hi” …( no God pleeeeese don’t  let him give me a ticket!)

sheriff – “hi there, how are you today?”

me “fine, I’m fine, how are you?” ( just tell me what I did please,  just a warning would be great, I really can’t afford one more bill!)

sheriff- “Are you Christmas shopping?”

me- “no,  just buying a work table”

sheriff- “oh where do you work?”

me- “oh I own a small antique shop in Solana Beach” ( why is he asking where I work?)

Sheriff- “well we are giving out $100 bills today, and I have one for you” 🙂

me- ” what? is this real? ( oh man it looks like a real bill!)

sheriff- ” yes it’s real, do you need it?”

me- ” yes I do, I really do, wow thank you so much!” ( wiping tears away)

The sheriff waves and smiled as I drove away. I headed back to work bewildered and thankful, God knew how much I could use the 100$ to help get a little more caught up, more than that it was encouraging to me that god knows my worries and he cares.

Then I called my mom, ” Mom you will never believe what just happened!” I started t tell her when she interrupted half way through the story…

Oh my gosh Debi, I think I know what happened , he gave you a hundred dollar bill!”

“yeah mom how did you know that? ”

“I saw it on youtube, they’re giving out 100$ to people who look needy!”

money shot

Crispy new ones with the fancy hologram.

well maybe it was the paint splattered clothes or old boots that are coming apart, or the fact that I didn’t take the time to hem my skirt and cut it off letting the edges fray because it looks edgy…

Whatever the reason I’m grateful, and I hope sharing my story somehow passes the encouragement on to you, I believe that God knows and cares about all our worries no matter how big or small.

UPDATE, since posting this yesterday, I sent a thank you email to the Sheriff Dept. here’s a copy of the response,

I hope that the people behind the Secret santa Program will find their way to this post and know that their generosity is appreciated. Thank you  so much!

I can only imagine how much fun it was to be the sheriff’s handing out the bills yesterday!

I don’t have cash to hand out but thanks to Heirloom Traditions I do have a fun paint giveaway!


Here’s a list of tips that Claire put together for you!


Have you ever painted a sign?

Has anyone ever given you an unexpected gift?


I’m super excited to offer some free paint, courtesy of Heirloom Traditions! We are giving away a half dozen 6oz samples of DIY Paint and white wax!

sample jars with lids

There are two ways to enter, simply LIKE and leave a comment, with a creative quote to paint on a sign, on the DIY paint Facebook page or on my Youtube Channel.

The winner will be announced in a video on Christmas Day!

PS, my mom wants to personally thank you for the prayers , she will be in the video with me announcing the winner!

DIY paint comes in 20 beautiful colors that I hand selected just for you, and there are five new colors coming in March!  You can shop online for DIY paint here,  or inquire about where to find it in your area and get info about becoming a DIY paint retailer at hello@debisdesigndiary.com

Wishing you some encouragement this Holiday season!

Merry Christmas,




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