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Woodburning – Try Something New Every Month

Wood Burned Matching Game

It’s a new month, which means another TSNEM post! You can read more about Try Something New Every Month in this post – but it’s basically my 2015 creative challenge. I bought this wood burning pen and set of branch slices a long time ago, planning on making my son some nifty alphabet letters… and then completely forgot about it. After a birthday and Christmas, he has plenty of letter toys so I decided to make a simple matching game instead.

Check out lots of more talented and creative woodburning projects in my inspiration roundup post here!

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I used this Woodburning pen* from Walnut Hollow, which I’m sure is cheaper at Jo-Ann Fabrics or Michaels (but I was impatient and ordered it off Amazon… only to not use it for months and months. Brilliant). I wish I could link the Etsy shop I purchased the slices from, but for some reason I can’t find the purchase in my history. Has that ever happened to you? Maddening.

For all my little shapes, I used free Dingbats fonts from Dafont.com (detailed below) but I also keep a Pinterest board for silhouettes to be used in freezer paper stenciling and applique – a lot of them would work for wood burning too!

Wood burned toy

I did not enjoy this project very much. I have essential tremors, which means my hands shake for no good reason, and using the wood burning pen was really trying. I thought that by continuing to practice, I’d get better, but it almost seemed like the opposite.

Wood burned log slices

I tried to do designs of my son’s favorite things – trucks, pumpkins, apples, and some common shapes. You can see all the little dots where my pen got ‘stuck’. I tried to do a more back and forth motion, tried the different shaped tips, but nothing seemed to help my technique.

Here are the fonts I used! All free for personal use on Dafont.com.

Woodburning symbols

I used a simple pencil/carbon transfer method since I knew free-hand drawing wasn’t going to land me with two matching designs.

How To Wood Burn

Just (1) outline the drawing in heavy pencil, (2) flip it over and hold it up to the light to center it, (3) rub firmly over the drawing on the back side of the paper, (4) double check that the image transferred, (5) practice! this was a random log slice painting I found at Goodwill Outlet, and (6) wood burn over your drawing.

Handmade toddler toy

At just over 2, he wasn’t as excited about the matching element as he was about stacking. It was fun watching his face light up at the different ‘drawings’ though. I was going to make a simple pouch to keep them in, but now I’m thinking he might love some type of slot jar to pass them through. We don’t drink coffee, so I need to think of something similar that I could cut a hole in the top lid. Any ideas?

Woodburned Star

So, similar to Rebecca, I was frustrated that mistakes weren’t fixable but also that practicing didn’t seem to make much difference (admittedly, this was all within one afternoon, so there’s that). I think larger designs composed of small straight lines, or dots, would be easier to burn precisely since those seemed to be the two shapes I could do reliably. I will probably hold on to the pen; I’m sure my kid(s) will want to experiment at some much later point. I have a tutorial/inspiration post coming up next week that also shares a few other materials that you can use a wood burning pen on, so maybe I’ll experiment with one of those! Have you ever tried wood burning? What did you think?

See what other bloggers tried this month!

 

Wood burning first project

This Post Has 7 Comments
    1. I have a round-up of woodburning inspiration post on Monday – in it is woodburned leather! I’d never thought about using it on anything else, maybe I’ll have better luck with woodburning something other than wood 😉

  1. This is on my shortlist of projects to try! I actually thought my oldest might enjoy trying it too. He’s always asking to use our tools and would probably do well with a little bit of instruction and experimentation. I’m thinking I might do some garden signs…

  2. Many, many moons ago I did wood burning with kids at school. I doubt that it would be allowed now. We learnt it as part of our teacher training and so every class I taught for the first few years had several sessions of wood burning as a craft activity. The kids LOVED it!!! Wish I’d kept some of my examples. The matching game you have made is fabulous, Stephanie – stacking now, matching later.

  3. The matching game is so cute! I think that using the wood burning pen would frustrate me also because I couldn’t fix my mistakes, which I know I would make!

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