I’ve been scrambling over the past week with an exciting project – exciting for me anyways – I’ve recently been interviewed for London’s LifeStyle Magazine!
No, it’s not BHG or Country Living – but it’s local and I’m so excited!
The article is going to revolve around my 100Things2Do before Christmas checklist (which has since been re-designed and edited to be “100Things2Do before the Holidays”) and the editor asked me to provide a head shot with a DIY project specific to the Holidays.
I have a TON of Christmas projects, but I don’t have any with my face in them, and then there’s the issue that my DIY project needed to be for the Holidays, and not Christmas in particular.
I was puttering in the garage the other day trying to come up with Seasonal DIY items that didn’t lean towards any particular religion when…
Lightbulb! (in my best Gru imitation)
What about a wooden horse!
Rustic, traditional and great for Holiday decor, without speaking directly to Christmas.
I pulled out a couple of pieces of 2″x10″ wood and traced out a horse shape on each.
If you are attempting to make your own wooden horse, you’ll want to choose a silhouette where the feet are standing on the ground so that you have a surface to attach to the base. Three legs may work, but all four will be the most solid.
I brought out my handy-dandy Rockwell Bladerunner X2 and cut out the image – yes, the Bladerunner can cut through a 2″ board with relative ease. It’s sort of a hybrid between a jig saw and a scroll saw – and was perfect for this project.
If you don’t own a Bladerunner, a jig saw will work (but a scroll saw WILL NOT – the wood is too thick).
Once my wooden horse was cut, it was a matter of sanding to get a more rounded appearance. I used my Rockwell VibraFree Random Orbit Sander which made quick work of the job.
The Vibra-Free is a new release from Rockwell Tools and quite the evolution from the traditional random orbit sander. I’ve had the opportunity to play with it on this and other projects and am impressed. (more on that later)
Looking good right?!
I could have cut circles from scrap wood for the wheels on my wooden horse, but then (lightbulb) I remembered I had branches leftover from my vase project a week or so ago, and they were the perfect size.
This is going to seem like an odd step, but wait until you see further down why I decided to stain my horses in a dark walnut before painting them.
I let the stain dry over night and then added two coats of off-white paint over top.
There was a method to my madness; I wanted the wooden horse to look antique – with roughed up edges and a less-than-perfect finish. If I’d only painted it in the white and then sanded some rough spots in, you would have seen the fresh yellow pine shine through. By staining my wooden horse first and then roughing it up, I was able to get a darker wood peeking through to make it seem more authentic.
Looks like these have been around for decades right?
Well-loved and antique-ish?
I cut some scrap 1″x4″ wood to be slightly larger than the area needed for the horse’s legs. After sanding, staining and then adding a coat of varnish, it was time to add my pine wheels.
I attached the first wheel with a 1 ½” finishing nail and then used a level for the other three wheels to get my wooden horse as level as possible. These wheels will move, but since the branch wasn’t perfectly round I will lose level if they do. To keep them fairly stiff I just tapped the finishing nail in tightly.
A bit of Gorilla Glue on the hooves of my wooden horse and it’s pretty solid.
You can stop here or you can add a twine bridle and reigns.
For the magazine photos, I decided to wrap a few (faux) winter branches around the neck.
DIY Holiday Decor from scrap wood and old branches – plus it smells like pine! I absolutely LOVE how this wooden horse turned out!
The photo shoot?
My Uncle graciously agreed to snap a few images for me, and I think the project will be a beautiful Holiday tribute.
That is the cleanest you will ever see me, so it was important to capture it on film. lol
Have a great one!