If you like puzzles, then you’ll love creating your own version of today’s project: a scrap wood Canadian (or insert your country) Flag.
My scrap wood bin (a large garbage pail) is overflowing with bits. I have a wall on the side of my house that is a big expanse of empty – which means I “need” something to fill the space and I “need” to get rid of some wood… it’s like a 1 + 1 = 2 sort of thing that you crafters can relate to.
so I pulled out some 1″ thick scrap wood bits and cut each piece on a 45 degree angle on my mitre saw. You could totally do this without the angled cuts, but I find that puzzling together pieces that are triangular give your finished project more character than simply piecing together squares and rectangles.
I bought some 1/2″ cedar fence boards and figured out the size I wanted my Canadian flag to be, then guesstimated on the size of the maple leaf I’d need in the centre.
I used three, 6″ cedar boards cut to 20″ wide as a base and then pieced together my scrap wood bits to fill it.
Once I had the pieces arranged, I glued each one down with wood glue (the x’s you see are to let me know which have been glued). I weighted down the boards as best I could and let it dry for awhile.
I printed out a maple leaf on the computer and then traced about 2″ outside of it to give me a larger leaf.
You could use a jigsaw to cut out your emblem, or the Rockwell Bladerunner, but I wanted to play with my new scroll saw…
Okay, so I need a bit more practice – but save for a few minor gauges and uneven points – you get the idea of a maple leaf.
Before sanding the piece down, I added a few finishing nails to the back to add strength to the scrap wood bits. Even if the scroll saw/jigsaw/bladerunner didn’t knock anything loose, the sander probably will.
I gave a thorough sanding to the outside edges to smooth out any lumps and bumps (as best I could) and then sanded the face of the maple leaf to even out the board heights (a bit). I didn’t want to go for a flush finish – I like the look of the scrap wood all pieced, it’s quite symbolic of Canada I think.
I watered down some red paint at about a 3:1 ration and then washed the leaf and wiped off the excess.
I cut four of my cedar fence boards to 4′ long and taped off my red and white sections and then painted. If you are making a Canadian flag like this one, then the centre section should take up half of your wood and the side (red) sections should take up a quarter each. At 4′ wide, that meant 12″ red, 24″ white, 12″ red.
I’d seen a flag on Pinterest that had the boards strung together with ropes and I loved the look, so I ran a length of sisal down the front of the boards, then on the way up the back, I wrapped the back rope around the front one in between each board.
Until you pull it taught, it will just look like twisted rope, so give it a good tug (front and back) and it will look like this:
Make a final knot at the top of your flag and use the tails to hang.
From here it’s just a matter of centring the maple leaf (or your emblem) and screwing into place through the back of the Canadian flag using 1 1/4″ galvanized screws. I added a coat of outdoor varnish to seal my piece, but only because I was using indoor paint to paint it. If you are using an outdoor paint or stain, you could probably skip this step.
For you Yanks – your scrap might not make a central emblem, but you could make a square behind the stars? The Union Jack would be gorgeous in different types of wood.
Perhaps for the French, Italian and German flag you could create a large heart, or the shape of your country out of scrap bits and then paint the stripes over that instead?
The Australian flag? Yeah, you’ll be working for awhile. lol Japan – you’re laughing – make 10!
So easy, so cute and a great indoor or outdoor project.
I can’t wait for the to cedar age so the Canadian flag gets a rustic patina!