Monday, June 18, 2012

Modern Wood Veneer Wall Art

You know those projects that you think might be pretty easy to do? So you go for it thinking you'll be done with it at the end of the day, have an awesome project to show off on your blog, only to have it be more difficult than you thought and anything that could go wrong does?

Ya, that was me yesterday. Hence this very late almost didn't happen because I was going to throw this project out the window blog post. Why am I sharing this with you? Well I while back I made a commitment to share more of the truth of what happens with some of my projects; they don't all go smoothly.

So here we go; with some persistence I was successful with this project in particular!!

I had ordered some wood veneer wall covering samples a while back; thinking I could do something pretty cool with them with my Silhouette. 

If you want to try and order some of your own I ordered mine from They came quickly and were free, I just had to fill out an order form. An excited Rep may call you about your upcoming "project" your choosing samples for- I just thanked her and told her we were still deciding and would let her know....

After I received my sample inspiration struck. Last week I was talking about Mid Century furniture designers; and how I wish I could own some fabulous pieces. Since I don't see myself purchasing any in the near future I thought some miniature versions would suffice in the meantime.

I downloaded images of a few of my favorite Eames chairs:

Then resized and cut them out them in Photoshop so I could import them into the Silhouette program.

After importing into Silhouette I used the "Trace" Tool cut out the shape. Otherwise the machine was only recognizing a square instead of the chair image I wanted. Then I set my print settings to cut the veneer. This took some trial and error to get the right cut depth and speed as you can see:

I wasted two sheets of my veneer with cutting problems which really irritated me. This was probably more of a user error than a Silhouette issue though.

Finally I found the right cut settings. I discovered that using the Card Stock thickness option, a slow cut speed of 3, and setting the depth of the needle to 9, and choosing the double cut option worked best.

Finally success!! It popped out pretty easily but I had to use a nail file to sand down a few of the edges that didn't cut perfectly.

Next for my wood panel I used a piece of scrap pine board I cut down to size, then sanded and painted white.

I used all purpose Gorilla Glue to adhere my veneer chair to the wood panel. I set a book on top to hold the veneer chair down. 

I thought I had used hardly any glue, but when I lift my book up later I discovered that glue had seeped out everywhere! My panel was ruined! Ugh I was so upset. I didn't want to start all over cutting and painting a whole new piece of wood. And I didn't want to waste even more veneer.

Instead I was lucky enough to be able to peel the veneer off the painted wood. Thank goodness!! See where the glue had seeped out? What a mess!

SInce the veneer came off cleanly I flipped my wood panel over and tried again. This time I barely used any glue at all. 

I was hoping to have a whole Eames Veneer Chair Collection to show you today but after all that trial and error I'm glad to have one for now. I like the way it came out. You could even do different color paint for the background depending on the look your going for.

Have a great rest of your Monday!!


Courtney said...

What a fantastic idea!! I need a silouhette!!!
The way I see it - If we don't make mistakes, we don't learn anything. And I want to keep learning until the day I leave this world, so bring on the mistakes!!!!
Hope you're well Rachelle. X

Ashley@AttemptsAtDomestication said...

Well despite the hold ups it came out really cool! I love how you used a chair, it's so abstract! :)

Elizabeth said...

What a cool project! I have been wanting a silhouette. I have a Cricut and just don't like the limitations but have thought the silhouette might be too complicated to learn? Thanks for the inspiration and stopping by!

Claiming Our Space said...

I absolutely love this! Of course living in West MI, the home of Herman Miller, probably has something to do with this. Thanks so much for sharing at Tout It Tuesday. Hope to see you next week.