Monday, February 13, 2012

Wood Burned Personalized Clock

Over the weekend it was my husband's and I's 5th Wedding Anniversary. Even though I am pretty good at making jewelry, I am not so good at this kind of artistic work. I asked my sister for ideas about what to give him because she is the artistic one in our family. The traditional (or modern?) gift for 5th anniversaries is wood. She suggested to make a wood wall hanging with each of our family's names burned on it. Later, we agreed it should be a clock so that is a functional and useful gift, rather than just a decoration.

Okay, so enough of the story, here is how I made it. I didn't take many pictures along the way so I will just explain where there are no pictures!

All you need is :
1. Wood blanks (I got them at home depot for pretty cheap. They even cut them up into six 15" pieces for me!)
2. Wood burning tool with a transfer tip (Michaels has them for $30. I used a 40% off coupon and got it for a good price!)
3. A clock mechanism with hands
4. Some extra wood to make a frame and put the whole thing together on

First, you need to transfer the font on the wood so it looks professional. You can only use a laser printer to print the images. They have to flipped and then printed. You can tape the paper on the wood with the ink facing the wood. Then, you will use a transfer tip (a flat round tip) and move over the letters quickly. It might take you two of three tries to get a decent amount of ink on the wood. Be very careful not to burn the paper. Here is what it will look like after transferring:

Now, the second step is to use your dot tip (or which ever one you feel comfortable with) and burn on top of the image that you transferred. It is best to practice on a rough piece of wood before you start on your project.
Do this for all the names that you want on the clock. I put my husbands name on the top, then mine, and then both my girls. I left two planks blank at the end for the clock.

When you are done with all the names, here is how it should roughly look:

Now, you can start drawing little wines with a pencil like this:

As you can see in the picture above, just start using your wood-burning tool with the dot tip to burn the wine on top of the pencil drawing. Also place the clock hands on the clock and do one full circle to see if the wine is not too much on the right side.

Don't forget to place little lines for the clock. You can also burn numbers in. I ran out of space so I had to just do with lines, which turned out to be more elegant, in my opinion.

After that, I polished it (3-4 coats). You have to put let each coat dry before putting the next one on. Also, sand the planks lightly before applying each coat.

Then, I asked my dad and my grandfather to cut a big square for the clock. First they drilled a hole in the plank where I wanted the clock mechanism to be. Then they cut the square in the back. This was probably the hardest part!

After this was done, we fitted the clock carefully. The instructions come with the clock. If you they didn't come with the clock mechanism, contact me and I can find them for you online.

After this was done, we made a rectangular frame and nailed each plank on it to make it easier to hang on the wall. AND VOILA! It was all set to be given to my husband. He was in total AWE when he saw it! :)

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