How to Make an Address Sign with Slabs and Extrusions

Address-Sign-620Address signs are fun to make as housewarming gifts for friends and family, or to put your own personal stamp on your own house. In today’s post, an excerpt from The Extruder Book, Daryl Baird shows how to make a lovely address sign with extruded parts. – Jennifer Harnetty, editor.



Address-Sign-DiesRecently, a friend asked me to make an address sign for her new home. For the dies, I decided to make the shapes I needed using Jim Robison’s credit card die technique (see page 129 of The Extruder Book for more instructions).



Build Your Own Extruder

If you want an extruder, or perhaps you need a second one, build it! Daryl Baird provides complete plans for constructing an extruder from locally sourced parts and also detailed steps for making your own dies. Catch all this and much more in his new Extruder Book.





1. Roll out a large slab of clay just under ½-in. thick. Cut the slab into an oval shape using a serving platter as a template.


Address-Sign-(24)2. Use the small bull nose extrusion for trimming the edge of the sign. The height of the notch in the extrusion should match the thickness of the clay slab. Extrude a piece long enough cover the entire edge of the slab. Attach to the slab immediately and apply even pressure all the way around to bond the trim to the slab without scoring the edge or applying slip. Store the oval slab under plastic.


Address-Sign-(26)3. For numbers, use the T-shaped die, which has an opening about 1¼-in. wide and about 1-in. high. The extrusion is easy to shape while offering a large back surface area that will bond well to the oval slab. Extrude several lengths of the T-coils and occasionally spray them with water to keep them moist. Place them on a piece of drywall.


Address-Sign-(28)4. Use a pencil to draw the outline of the numbers or letters you want directly on the drywall. Follow these pencil lines as you lay out the extrusions.


Address-Sign-(21)5. Mist the oval slab with water until the surface glistens. Lightly place the numbers on the surface. When properly positioned, apply light even pressure repeatedly until the numbers are firmly in place. You’ll find that it isn’t necessary to distort the shape of the extrusion to achieve good attachment.


6. Keep the sign on the drywall wrapped securely in plastic for two or three days. Place it on a dry piece of drywall and continue to allow it to dry slowly and evenly.






For more information and techniques on working with clay, be sure to download your free copy of How to Make Pottery: How to Learn Pottery Techniques and Enjoy Working with Clay. 




  • I’ve been wanting to do this for a neighbor – thanks for the info.

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