Designing a Christmas Wreath #4: Changed My Mind

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Blog entry by KomputerMan posted 12-12-2014 11:55 PM 1581 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Selecting Colors for the AmbersBear Inlay Part 4 of Designing a Christmas Wreath series no next part

I changed my mind about the Christmas Wreath I was building for the Festival of Trees. Even though I built three sets of ornaments for a wreath I decided to skip the wreath due to financial issues. That doesn’t mean I didn’t still build and donate something to the event because I did! I just changed my donation from a wreath to a Christmas Decor item.

Actually it was a pretty fun project as I first had to make tweaks to the Santa Hat. I like how the hat turned out myself!

To build AmbersBear I selected Purple Heart for the paws and outer ear. I’m a huge PH fan!!! :) Yellow Heart for the body and face. Walnut for the mask and inner ear. Bloodwood for the Santa Hat. And a little bit of old growth Redwood for the sweater. Then I used a glitter filled epoxy for the nose, eyes, and brim of the hat.

If you’re new to inlays I recommend cutting the voids out prior to the inlay pieces. This helps you get use to the shape of the template so when you cut the inlay piece out you are already familiar with the curves in the template. As is though, I’ve built more than my share of inlays so I just cut out the inlay pieces first.

AmbersBear is an easy design to assemble because there are very few sharp edges. The long sweeping edges on the inlay pieces are easy to sand for a good fit into the void. This is what AmbersBear looked like after Layer 2 was finished.

Yule (sic) notice I left the eyes empty. I did this because I was going to fill them with a blue glitter filled epoxy at a later stage. Thing with epoxy is you really shouldn’t do any machining to the epoxy for at least 48 hours after it has been poured. It just takes that long to harden before you can sand and or cut it.

I continued on with the build and this is what the inlay looked like after Layer 5 was complete. On this one you’ll notice I didn’t include the right ear and I left the nose empty. the nose is empty because I wanted to fill the void with glitter filled epoxy kind of like the eyes. There was no point in adding the ear either because it would be routed out when I added the Santa hat.

The Santa Hat is a two layer inlay. First you add the hat and then the brim and ball. Because I was using glitter on those last two elements the woodworking portion of the build (except for sanding) was complete!

I added the glitter and did some preliminary sanding at this point. I still had to wait another day for the glitter to dry before I could finish up the piece. At this point I ran into two problems. First was I ran out of time so I didn’t get to do a proper job of finishing the whole project. The final sanding and finish looked sloppy… BOOO!!!! :(

The second problem is the old growth redwood I used for the sweater was pretty thin to begin with and I started to sand through it a bit. If I would have had another week I would have replaced the sweater and did a better job finishing. Oh well… it still turned out pretty cool. IMHO of course.

I hope you enjoyed this series!!!

-- Have an Ordinary Day ~|:-)

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