A little woodworking.

To get in the spirit of things, and rev up these blogging engines I’m going to share a bit about what I’ve been spending my time learning lately. I go through phases where I spend hours researching how to do something, be it build a deck, twirl a pen, build a longboard, carve a chain, carve a guitar, build a hammock, anything and everything and I’m stupid enough to believe that no project is too big. It can leave you in a bit of a pickle when you purchase several stacks of lumber and realize you are in WAY over your head.

Regardless, it’s always seemed to work out in the end!

So, lately I’ve been learning some woodworking!

My latest project was a carved plaque for my varsity coach. She’s been a fantastic influence in my life and I wanted to be sure she knew how much she had meant to me over my time at university!

I started with a piece of 2×8 that was left over from a bedframe I’d crafted a few months ago. After sawing it to size, I traced out the design of our school’s logo and began chipping away at the background with some shallow gouges and a whittling knife.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The key, I’ve found (and to be honest, I’ve only been chipping away at things for a few months so what do I know?) Is to start with carving out the deepest section of background, then carving it in layers from there.

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After carving, I sanded for what seemed like absolute hours! I started with a fairly rough grit because I was a sloppy carver and created a lot of mess. I ended at 220 grit, and thought it looked great!

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After sanding and wiping down, I decided to give it a coat of dark walnut stain and poly.

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If I were to stain again, I would purchase a stain that wasn’t a poly/stain combo. With furniture this is a nice way to clear up time instead of doing individual coats of each, but I didn’t like the shine it gave the plaque.

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And there she is! Old scraps that I get mad kudos from the coach for. Nice.

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