Over the summer, one of our neighbors cut down a Black Walnut tree. The tree company that dropped it and took it, left behind a big old pile of branches. Instead of letting that wonderful wood waste away, I was going to make something out of some of those beautiful branches!
My first project I did was actually born from this project. As I was cutting the branch into slices, I got a bug up my bum when I came to a crocked section with character and made some DIY Log Candlesticks! Let me tell you, they were so easy to make and so beautiful.
Once I finished with my candle sticks I finally got back to the original project I had in mind, these DIY Painted Wood Slice Ornaments! Now I am no artist by any means, but I have just enough talent to impress myself. LOL You don’t have to be an artist either! As I tell my children, there is no right or wrong in art. So let your creativity flow, and if you aren’t happy with your first attempt, try, try again.
So how do you make wood slices from a tree branch. Well I simply got my miter saw out and slowly fed the branch through. The thickness of the slices really depends on your preference. My slices are around 1/2″ thick.
Remember how I said you didn’t have to be an artist for this project? I only cut up one branch and it yielded a LOT of wood slices!! That’s a whole lot of chances to keep painting if you aren’t happy with your first attempt.
Here are just some of the ornaments I painted. These were all done free hand. I will admit a couple of them I went back and added more detail or changed an element or two until I was happy. The nice thing about painting with acrylics on wood slices is the wood drinks in the paint and dries rather quickly. That means you can tweek you design without having to wait a long time for the paint to dry. Of course that also means you might have to do a couple of coats in some of the lighter colors because the wood does soak up the paint.
Once you have your paintings done, it is time to add the hangers. This cute little Boston Terrier is one I did for my father. He recently lost his girl, Molly, and I thought it would be a nice keepsake for him. Simply use a dremel tool or drill bit slightly larger than the material you plan to use to make the hanger. I used twine to go with the rustic wood.
So let’s recap…. I used a FREE branch. I had a saw and drill. I already had acrylic paints and twine…… so I spent NOTHING to make these ornaments. That’s right, nothing. And I think they turned out pretty good. In fact, I might be addicted to painting things on wood slices now. My youngest asked for one with Mickey Mouse…. No problem. Any other requests?
Seriously, I could sit here all night, after everyone is in bed, and paint my little heart out. It is so relaxing and I can’t wait to give some of them as gifts this Christmas. What better way to give someone a little piece of yourself then to make them a beautiful ornament they will have for years to come.