The finished sign for the Abominable Snowman footprint. Due to time and budget, it was made really down and dirty, but it's done and fun for this Christmas. I consider it a decent prototype for a improved-on version next year that can then be used annually.
To create it as big as possible from a regular home printer, I made "BEWARE" and "ABOMINABLE SNOWMEN" in Photoshop as two separate legal sized images (8 1/2" x 14"). Once printed out they were spray glued onto a piece of black foamcore. The board was trimmed into a wonky shape and had cartoony notches and grooves cut out with an X-Acto to look like old weathered wood. The black board under the white paper instantly added contrast and shadow.
Next I gave the whole board a wash of watered down, brown craft paint. The grooves and edges had a few more washes added here and there to blend in better. When foamcore is wet on one side it tends to curl as it dries. Easily fixed just wetting the opposite side and it curls back again. The glued on paper naturally wrinkled a bit, but didn't bug me too much. It helped the antiqued look.
The sign post itself is just a 1" wood dowel painted white and mounted on a 12" plywood round base. The candy stripe is red tape. It was topped with a glued on wood finial and round ornament my stash (a change in the design from the original candy cane in the sketch) and painted gold. The base was covered with spray glued on blobs of batting for snow.
Because of recent high winds here, I secured the sign with black zip ties in addition to gluing on the post. Threading the ties through the recessed black grooves helps makes them not too obvious... at first glance at least.