Chisel Cut Name Plaques

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Project by chrisstef posted 07-30-2012 11:46 PM 2930 views 0 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The first pic shows a rather meaningful project for me. See, my wife and I are expecting our first baby in t-minus 29 days, which basically means any day now. We were going back and forth for months between 2 names and hadnt settled on anything. Well one night while wifeski headed up to bed early so i hit the shop and carved out the letters for Nathan and placed it on the counter. Done Deal. Nathan James. My man.

The second plaque is for a good friend and his wife who are also expecting a baby girl within the next 2 weeks (and then moving into a new house one week later .. good luck with that).

The letters are carved with my cheapo stanley chisels out of black walnut scraps. The backboard for the Nathan plaque is live edge spalted beech (from LJ CampD) and finished with dewaxed shellac and arm-a-seal. The Layla backboard is curly red oak (salvaged from a CT based nursing home handrail) and finished with wet sanded natural danish oil. The letters were originally 5/4 but resawn at different angles to give a little more texture with the mismatched thicknesses.

Thanks for checkin it out gang.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

14 comments so far

View lumberjoe's profile


2902 posts in 3328 days

#1 posted 07-31-2012 12:01 AM

That looks nice! How do I get an Ada and James one?


View Don W's profile

Don W

20050 posts in 3647 days

#2 posted 07-31-2012 12:05 AM

Nice job Chris. Best wishes with the family.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View chrisstef's profile


18132 posts in 4086 days

#3 posted 07-31-2012 12:06 AM

you gotta take the d and the j out of both of their names … i havent tried curved letters yet lol all though it would be a good reason to buy a gouge. I do have a book that kinda shows you how to carve them. Id be more than happy to scan it and send it your way Joe.

Much thanks Don!

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View ShaneA's profile


7085 posts in 3678 days

#4 posted 07-31-2012 12:12 AM

Nice looking projects. Good luck with the new addition!

View 489tad's profile


4000 posts in 4091 days

#5 posted 07-31-2012 12:34 AM

Chris you did a nice very nice job. All the best.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View chrisstef's profile


18132 posts in 4086 days

#6 posted 07-31-2012 12:40 AM

Thanks for the well wishes guys. Dan – you were right bud i did have time for one more project! Always sneakin just one more!

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View Arlin Eastman's profile

Arlin Eastman

4549 posts in 3641 days

#7 posted 07-31-2012 12:55 AM

Well done


-- It is always the right time, to do the right thing.

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 3916 days

#8 posted 07-31-2012 01:49 AM

Man, really impressed. How did you learn to carve letters?

That backer board for nathan is awesome!

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17317 posts in 3698 days

#9 posted 07-31-2012 02:29 AM

Very nice, Chris! And the name is an excellent one, congratulations on the upcoming addition! :-)

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

View DamnYankee's profile


3320 posts in 3642 days

#10 posted 07-31-2012 02:42 AM

Nicely done Dad!

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View fussy's profile


980 posts in 4130 days

#11 posted 07-31-2012 08:01 AM


Some guys are just plain talented. So far everything I have seen you do screams “Freaking Talented!!”. This is no exception. Nathan James will grow to cherish this for life. Congratulations.

Now, if you will permit, three rules of fathering:
1) Pick up and hold your kid every time you can. Don’t be afraid to hold him. He won’t break if you’re careful.
2) Never, Ever miss a chance to tell him you love him. He needs to hear it and SEE it. Spend TIME with him. Don’t worry about giving him Stuff; give him YOURSELF.
3) when you make a mistake, and unless you’re really special you will, Apologize and Fix it.
4) Did I say 3? Make Sure you and your wife are on the same page because the little booger will learn to play both ends against the middle. (Did you just ask your mother? What did she say? What makes you think I would say anything different?

One last idea—BUBBLEWRAP!!! tHIS year I have to transport my 5 year old grandson to an from Kindergarden, a 3 year old granddaughter to preschool, and in October a newborn granddaughter will have to ride along. SOme woory about negotiating steps with the two little ones. Bubblewrap to the rescue ! Just 3 or four layers and they bounce all the way to the truck. Just kick them like soccer ball. THEY ENJOY IT AND THINK IT A NEW GAME!!!

Congratulations to you and your wife. Much happiness awaits you.


-- Steve in KY. 44 years so far with my lovely bride. Think I'll keep her.

View chrisstef's profile


18132 posts in 4086 days

#12 posted 07-31-2012 12:16 PM

Man, you guys know how to make a fella feel good, thank you all.

Spun – I just tried it. I have an older woodworking book that kind of explained how to cut them. Basically i struck 3 lines for every part of the letter hammered my chisel down the center line and then chiseled at an angle on the other 2 lines. I got lucky … none of the letters have curved lines ;)

Steve – Thanks for the fatherly tips, its been a long time in the making for the wife an I and we both couldnt be any more excited. The bubblewrap is a great idea. If hes anything like his old man there will be plenty of bumps, bruises, and stiches in store.

Ive got to say that my most proud moment of the little project was not drawing any blood of my own with a freshly sharpened set of chisels.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

View CampD's profile


1827 posts in 4566 days

#13 posted 03-11-2013 08:03 PM

Missed this one first time around,
Very nice use and it looks great.

BTW; Congrats!

-- Doug...

View chrisstef's profile


18132 posts in 4086 days

#14 posted 03-11-2013 08:08 PM

I should have given you the heads up earlier but hey better late than never. Ive still got a few pieces left over that ill get around to using.

Thanks for the congrats and the compliments.

-- Its not a crack, its a casting imperfection.

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