I’ve always been attracted to the look of wood-burned designs. There’s something so rustic and charming about them! After perusing all the cute wooden craft items at my local craft stores, I decided that it was time to give wood burning a try for myself.
I bought a wood burning tool at Hobby Lobby for $15, and committed to learning how to use it. Luckily, it turned out to be easier than I imagined!
So today I’m sharing what I’ve learned (so far) – because if I can tackle a few simple wood burning projects, ANYONE can! :-)
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My wood burning tool came with 4 different tips, but I ended up using the “universal tip” for almost everything I did. It’s a pointed tip, like the tip of a pen, and is the easiest to use for simple lines in my opinion. I haven’t branched out into trying any shading or anything, but I’m sure the other tips would be helpful for that if you want to give it a try.
To keep things simple, I decided on a simple herringbone pattern for my first wood burning project, a cute wooden picture frame I found at Walmart.
- metal ruler
- wood-burning tool
- sanding block
- multi-purpose sealant spray
I started by drawing the herringbone pattern onto the frame using a ruler and a pencil. Don’t worry about being perfect, because it’s really easy to erase messed up pencil marks on the wood.
One the pattern was laid out, I let my wood burning tool heat up for about 5 minutes or so, then slowly started burning in the pencil lines. If you use a metal ruler, you can use it as a straight-edge for your burning tool to ensure your burned lines are nice and straight. (Don’t do this with a plastic ruler, of course, because it will melt!)
The key to getting nice, uniform burn lines is going slow, and applying steady pressure. If your line comes out lighter than you wanted, you can always go over it again. And if you accidentally make a burn mark you didn’t mean to make, use your sanding block or a piece of sand paper to sand down the area. You may not eliminate the burn mark completely, but it will lighten significantly and be a lot less noticeable.
Once you’ve burned all your lines and you’re happy with the design, there’s just a few finishing touches left. First, use your sanding block to sand down any rough edges or splinters.
Finally, use a clear sealant to protect the wood. I found a can of spray sealant at a craft store, which made it super easy. Spray on a few light coats on each side.
Put your photo in the frame, and find a nice spot to display your new frame!
I was so happy with how my frame turned out that I made a few more wood burned crafts, including a set of coasters and a necklace. Craft stores like Michaels and Hobby Lobby have a large variety of wood products available, so you’re really only limited by your imagination!
Here’s to my new wood burning tool, and all of the fun, custom creations to come! :-)