How to make log slice wall art from the Lumberjack Room

February 6th, 2015

*** This tutorial linked to the Cricut Design Star Contest. The project girl is a top 5 finalist. Check the room out and vote for her here ***

Hi, It’s me, Mr Project again, hot on the heels of my last post, bringing you another AMAZING tutorial. Okay, not a tutorial per-se, but rather a glimpse into the fun I had making some log slice wall art for my wonderful wife, The Project Girl.

Click here to PIN this project


When we set out to do the lumberjack room I knew I’d be signing up for a few unique woodworking projects. If you haven’t yet, check out my walkthrough on how I went about building the lumberjack bunk beds. I even threw in some free plans and tips on how to build something similar.

Step 1 – Plan of attack

Logs are funny things. They’re usually pretty round, heavy and unwieldy and I had no idea how on earth I was going to get some logs and how I was going to cut them after I got them. We were looking for something around 16-24 inches in diameter that we could cut into slices or “cookies” as they’re sometimes called in woodworking. A friend of mine recently renovated their home inside and out, and fortunately, I was able to bum a few logs off him, with the condition that I make something for him. The logs I got are about 22 inches in diameter, so I’d need to get a chainsaw big enough to handle slicing through those beauties.

Step 2 – Procure Chainsaw

I then made a few phone calls and borrowed a monster chainsaw with a long enough bar on the front that could slice through those logs. Okay, it’s a monster to me, because chainsaws are, well, terrifying at first until you get the hang of it, and cut your face off. I kid.

Always wear face/eye/ear protection!

Step 3 – Cut Logs

Maneuvering and cutting the logs was fun. Fortunately, when we were building the canyon view house, I built a dolly to move the massive cabinets for our kitchen as I was building them. I used that to flop down the heavy logs and haul them on to the driveway where I’d do all my cutting.  The project girl wanted slices that were about 2 inches thick, so after some eyeballing, I measured out and cut three slices to use in our project. Now, here’s the challenging part, cutting a log is somewhat easy, but flattening the slice of wood took a little craftiness.


Step 4 – Flatten Cookies

Using a router and a GIANT router bit called a surface planing bit (You can find one here on Amazon and if you click this link, you’ll be supporting more projects by The Project Girl!), I flattened out the cookies one by one.


What you see in the photo is what’s called a router sled. The idea is simple, and you can find out more of the technical side of how to make one here. Basically it’s a carriage and guides that allow you to slide a router back and forth over a piece of wood on a parallel plane, so that the bit flattens the side of wood you’re working with, This is SUPER useful when you’re working with big or awkwardly shaped pieces of lumber.


Step 5 – Bake

After cutting and surfacing the cookies, it was time to bake them. burning the wood with fire makes the grain show up improving the look of the slice. I’ve always been intrigued by Japanese wood burning as a finishing technique, so I decided to give it a try…. Kind of. I don’t have pics of me doing this because it was hella hot and noisy as I was using a roofing torch (You can find them online here). I placed the cookie on something non flammable and torched it so that the front was semi-burned. It’s pretty quick if you’re using a roofing torch, but be careful. it is crazy hot and a little nerve racking to light. You’ll also need a propane tank to get the party started if you decide to burn your wood.


You could use a smaller butane torch, like I did for the edges, but on the front flat surface, it’s better to have a big flame to cover a larger area so that things don’t end up too splotchy.

Step 6 – Finish

I finished the cookies in the same way I finished the bunkbeds (see post for products and technique). After the finish dried, I was a little concerned about stabilizing the cookie, so I glued a piece of MDF I cut out to match the shape of the log on the back, so that even if it did split, It would stay together. I use this awesome Pro 200 Glue Gun from Adtech for all my projects and it was perfect for applying industrial strength hot glue to the back of the log.

Step 7 – Apply graphics and Hang Cookie

Next, I installed a small keyhole plate for hanging. You can find one here through this amazon link. To install it, I needed to drill a small hole and just screw in the plate. If you want the log flush on the wall, you could route a recess for the plate in the back of the wood like I did and mount that way. A little more technically challenging, but will get you flush on the wall.


With all that done, Jen completed the artwork and cut it out on the Cricut Explore. I don’t have a picture or video of it cutting, but here’s a shot of the file that The Project Girl created to be cut. She cut it out of regular Cricut white vinyl, and then applied it usingCricut Transfer Tape.


It really all came together and it fits in the room perfectly!


If you like the project, vote for The Project Girl by clicking this link. It only takes a few seconds!

TheProjectGirl-60-Katie Dudley Photography


Cricut Design Space Star – Halloween Party Projects using Cricut Explore

September 18th, 2014

*This post contains affiliate links and is part of the Design Space Star contest by Cricut. All projects and opinions are 100% mine.

Pin this project to your halloween board!


Screen Shot 2014-08-20 at 11.08.45 PM

It’s Cricut Design Space Star time again! This round my team decided on Halloween Party as our theme. We all created fun party projects that are linked at the bottom of this post. I created a party display with a Spooky Cake Topper & Stand, Halloween Cupcakes, Ghost Banner, and a BOO pendant.

I created all these great projects using my awesome Cricut Explore! Check out my full tutorial post for the Cake Stand, Cupcakes, and Ghost Banner.

Pin this Cake Topper & Cake stand to your Halloween board.


Pin these cupcake picks and wraps to your halloween board:


Pin this Mini Ghost Banner to your Halloween Board.


Check out my full Crepe Paper Boo Pennant Banner Tutorial Post.

Pin the Crepe Paper Pennant to your halloween board!theprojectgirl-boo-door

My super creative teammates also created some gorgeous Halloween party projects using their Cricut Explore. Be sure to check out and pin all these projects so you can get your halloween decor and celebrations on this year (links below image)!


Spider to the Fly Text Art by Hideous, Dreadful, Stinky!
Halloween Cupcake Toppers, Brooklyn Berry Designs
DIY Halloween Flashlight Projections, by Stuffed Suitcase
Skeleton Hand Pitcher, by Handmade in the Heartland
Spooky Cake Stand & Topper, The Project Girl
Halloween Luminary Bags, by The Country Chic Cottage
Halloween Party Set, Laura’s Crafty Life
Halloween Sparkle Garland, by Among the Young
Halloween Party Masks, by Freebies2Deals
Woodland Animal Masks, by Sewbon
To get inspiration, tutorials, and deals directly in your inbox, be sure to sign up for Cricut emails! Just scroll to the middle of the page and enter your address where it says “sign up for deals and inspiration.”
And if you haven’t heard the news yet! There is a new contest that YOU can enter too!

Cricut I Made It Contest

Enter the Cricut-I Made It! Contest

Because It’s Time to Make It Big
It’s time your creativity pays off so you can really make it.  Cricut has just announced the second phase of the Cricut – I Made It! contest and this time they’re awarding one winner their own Make it Now™ project line to be sold in Cricut Design Space™!
To help create your line, Cricut will fly you to their headquarters in Salt Lake City to work side-by-side with their design team.  Then you and a guest will enjoy an all-expense paid stay at the Grand America Hotel – a luxury resort in Salt Lake City, home to the best skiing in the world.
The winner will be featured on and every time a Cricut user purchases your project, you’ll earn money.  Cha-ching! Cricut will even help with your publicity.
Cricut is upping the fame game even more…camera, lights, action….
Cricut has partnered with the The Design Network – a premier online design channel – to showcase the Cricut- I Made It! winner this fall. You’ll get a spotlight feature on a network dedicated to celebrating great designers and their creative star power.
Cricut’s judges, including DIY Diva Alison Deyette and two creative directors from Cricut, will pick 50 finalists from the best project entries based on creativity, use of materials and technique.  Who will pick the ultimate winner? You, the public, will vote online in October.
To enter the Cricut – I Made It! contest, all you need is a photo of an original project. You can upload up to five photos (which can be five individual projects or multiple photos of one project).
You have until September 30th to enter.  What are you waiting for? It’s time you Made It big! Head to to enter today.

Disclosure  |  I am a member of the Cricut Blogger Network.  I may receive prizes in exchange for my winning projects.  Even though I am not being directly compensated for these posts, I am under consideration for a prize with Cricut Design Space Star. All opinions are 100% my own.

Spooky Cake Topper & Cake Stand and Halloween Cupcakes – Cricut Explore

September 18th, 2014

*This post contains affiliate links and is part of the Design Space Star contest by Cricut. All projects and opinions are 100% mine.

Pin this project to your halloween board!


I created this spooky cake topper & cake stand as part of the Cricut Design Space Challenge this month. I used my awesome Cricut Explore to create this great project and all of my other Design Space Challenge Projects!


Cricut Explore

Deep Cut Blade

Black core presentation board

Black cardstock (I used glitter card stock from Michaels)

Ad Tech low-temp glue gun

Wood Skewer

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