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wood burning

Autumn nature table


I love Autumn. The crisp early mornings. The changing colours of the leaves overhead. Before the crunching of leaves underfoot. A general slowing down and move towards introspection. Warm comfort foods and the comfort of wearing layers.


And while I am ready for these beautiful Autumn days, my children hold onto the Summer. Wanting to play in the backyard after dinner until the sky darkens. Resisting longer pants and jumpers. Happily eating the last of our strawberries.


One thing they do love about the change of seasons is discovering a changed nature table. Rediscovering old friends in the Autumn fairy door and wooden gnome I made a number of years ago now. But also any new representation of the season. Like from the lovely craft swaps I enjoy ~ see the whimsical walnut shell toadstools *smile*

And the children love adding their own items from nature ~ although one seed pod my son popped in his school bag last week appeared to explode on its way home! Leaving little bits of seeds everywhere. We are still clearing them from things!


Our most adored seasonal song is for the Autumn winds, and we are having such fun singing it:

The little winds they whisper, they whisper as they pass
They tell their tiny secrets to the flowers and the grass
The big winds go a buffeting and blustering about
The little winds they whisper but the big winds shout!

Happy Autumn, Kelly

How to make a gnome family

I thought it might be fun to share how I go about making a gnome family
But first, let me share that a year ago I would not have considered myself to be crafty creative at all
…seriously, not at all…
But somehow working with wood and letting little gnomies and their homes emerge…
…has got me all crafty-like *silly grin*
 So… where do I start? With a sanded piece of wood usually {or sometimes paper}
And I freehand on the gnome shape and go from there…
Just letting inspiration strike {or not, as the case may be}
When I am happy with my design I plug the wood burner in and draw with it, like it is just a really hot, slightly dangerous pen
{well, as long as you are careful it really isn’t dangerous *wink*}
Once the design is wood burned I get the scroll saw running.
It is such a fun tool to use, although it did take me awhile to stop being afraid of it! But now we are good friends, and I know the speed and tension it is happy to run with…
{not too slow, middle of the range speed and a tension that provides a good twang}
Next up is sanding. If the item is larger than a bread plate I tend to start with the belt sander and if it is smaller I will start with the dremmel
~ safety gear on ~
Sanding by hand is next up. A good task for while you are watching the kids, or enjoying a good conversation.
After the wood is nice and smooth it is time for painting!
I love this stage… choosing the colours and mixing the milk paint up
After a bit of trial and error, I have settled on using cheap eye makeup brushes. The foam works really nicely with milk paint and because they are small they are easier to manage
{and I really like the way the paint stains the wood, allowing the grain to show through}
Once the paint is dry {and this doesn’t take long} I heat up my wood polish, I use this tutorial to make it…
And massage it in with my hands
And then, they are done *smile*

Happy crafting,