Oh friends, this is the story of a craft project gone awry. I know we all have them from time to time. And in this case, I suffered from a case of overconfidence. You see, I really wanted to try woodburning. I had done it a really long time ago and liked it. And I figured I could pick it right back up again, no problem. So I didn’t do any research or anything. Just grabbed a wood plaque and my woodburning pen and got to work. And it did not go that well. Maybe it was the kind of wood I used? Maybe the design I picked was too complicated? I don’t know. But I had to change the plan in the middle. In the end I really like the finished product even though it’s nothing like what I intended. But such is life, right?
I won’t even pretend to call this a tutorial but here’s the story of what I did…
ABC Alphabet Nursery Art
1. So the initial plan was to make a woodburned version of my Alphabet Printable which is one of my all time favorite things in my etsy shop. So I first printed out an 8″ x 10″ version of the original drawing used to create that printable. You’ll be working with your own design so either draw directly on the wood or create something on the computer, print it to size and follow the same steps to transfer the design that I did.
4. Then I went to town with my woodburning pen. And I swear I totally practiced on the backside of the plaque first. But man, small letters were just much more difficult than I anticipated. But it didn’t take that long so I kept going until I was done. At which point I could officially declare that I HATED it.
It know it’s not THAT bad but it was really hard to get even line weights and every little mistake was super super obvious. It just wasn’t working for me. This is normally when I would have stopped and gotten a glass of wine to regroup. But I’m pregnant. So I had a cookie instead! 😉
5. Then the next day when I’d dragged myself out of the depths of crafty despair, I painted over the whole thing with gray chalk paint. Because I noticed that maybe I hated the woodburned look, but the woodburning pen did leave nice clear indented lines outlining the design!
6. At this point I still wasn’t sure what I was going to do, so I experimented with just one letter and added a thin coat of very light gray on top. And then I sanded it until most of the light color was gone and only left in the indented woodburned lines. And success! It looked so much cooler! So then I went ahead and painted the light color over all the other letters. 7. When that was dry, I took it outside and sanded for like an hour. Ok, it wasn’t really an hour. But I’m pregnant, every form of physical exertion seems about 4 times as hard as it really is. I liked the result but some of the letters were a little too faint.
8. So then I took a really really tiny paintbrush and used watered down paint to go back over some of the lines that weren’t showing up. That really helped. 9. Finally I painted the edge of the plaque a hot pink color. (Psst! Did I mention it’s a GIRL?!).