Monday, April 21, 2014

First Time Wood-Burning, Otherwise Known as Pyrography

From Wikipedia: Pyrography or pyrogravure is the art of decorating wood or other materials with burn marks resulting from the controlled application of a heated object such as a poker. It is also known as pokerwork or wood burning.
The term means "writing with fire", from the Greek pur (fire) and graphos (writing).[1] It can be practiced using specialized modern pyrography tools, or using a metal implement heated in a fire, or even sunlight concentrated with a magnifying lens.

My friend Michelle recently received a wood burning kit as a present. We weren't able to see her for February Craft Day (will post later), but I was able to hang out with her last weekend. After catching up, and showing her the quilling stuff I'd been working on and the books and awesomeness that is quilling, she showed me what she's done with her wood burning kit!

Then she handed me the tool, the extra tips that came with it, and a couple pieces of wood:

The one on the right she free-handedly drew for me and I traced, then added just a little extra (the dots and the thinner line around the inner level of petals) and the one on the left is one I free-handed myself, without drawing first, following a picture of a mendhi design I found online.

I was having a little difficulty on the flower but I think what I realized was that I was trying to really burn divots/lines into the wood, when really, you're just burning the surface, making shades of color based on how long the hot tip is on the wood, but just scarring the surface. I got a little better at not trying to get into the wood on the butterfly, but had already sorta taught myself the habit first. Oh well, after I get my own kit and a book or two, I'll practice a little and see what else I can come up with.

One thing Michelle and I talked about was designs that we couldn't free-hand ourselves. I mean, how DO you get the image on the wood to draw/trace!? I looked it up with my handy, dandy, Google skills and found this nifty tutorial:

He shows you how to use graphite paper to trace the image from a printout to the wood, and then how to fix if you get marks on the wood you don't want to be there!! 

I've also created a Pinterest board here if anyone's interested in seeing some of the ideas I've found.

I also want to maybe try to paint the butterfly and lotus piece, see what happens if I use watercolors. I've seen where people have used felt tip markers, acrylics, things like that... but not sure if I've seen anyone using watercolors. If I decide to do it and not just leave it as-is, I'll make sure to show you guys!!

So yeah... I'm hooked! lol I've already told boyfriend I want a kit and sent him links to a well-rated starter book, a kit and extra tips that include some stamp-like bits!!

SE WP28 28-Piece Wood burning - Hand Tool Sets -

Don't those look fun!?

Anywho, maybe for my birthday he'll get me the kit... if I don't get it for myself first from being too anxious to get to playing!! ;)

Craft ya laters!!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Making a TON of Origami Flowers

I'm not sure what happened to me in February, but I do know where I was in March!! I was making 7 DOZEN origami flowers for my boss who was decorating a friend's baby shower. The type of origami flower I was making was called a Kusudama Flower, instructions can be found here.

I had the whole month of March to make them, but I only really got into gear the last week and a half of the month, like a good craft But hey, in my defense, 84 flowers, each with 6 petals to add up to 504 petals total?! That's a LOT of work!!

I helped myself a little though and bought a fantastic cutter that fits a 12" sheet of paper and it made the paper cutting part especially easy!!

Since I had so many petals to fold, I just tossed them in a box as I finished folding them....

Once I was done folding them all, the box was FULL!! 

Then came the task of matching up all the petals...

This was also about the point that boyfriend had told me he didn't think I had enough petals. I looked at him and even though I assured him, "Are you kidding?! I counted like, 3 times!!!" He was saying this because he helped me glue the petals since I had class that night (which was an AWESOME help since we were on the last week deadline!!) but when he glued the individual petals closed, he used paper clips and said the count had to be off based on how many paper clips he used and how many the box said there were in the case....

Laying them out in the above way however assured me (and my sanity) that I had in fact made enough petals!! YAY!!

Next came the dowel rods I was going to be gluing the petals to. He also helped me paint these, what a trooper!! :D

Once I had all the petals grouped together, it was time to pair them up...

All the petals paired up!!

The flowers in action at the baby shower:

The soon-to-be mother was happy and the party went off fantastically, or so I hear. I was also told that there was a clamor to claim flowers by just about everyone at the party!! Talk about a job well done!!

It doesn't end there, either! I had 6 dowel rods left over and my boss told me the leftover paper was mine!! ALL MINE!!! WHEEEE!!!!! So what's a girl to do with this knowledge and these supplies???

Why, make MORE FLOWERS! Duh! Only, I made them smaller; 3" square petals to the original 4" square size.

That's it for this post, I hope you guys enjoyed!!

Craft ya laters!!