This morning I am working on getting your supply list ready for the Feathered Green Man Leather Journal Pyrography Project and came across a few photos on how to clean the graphite tracing lines from your wood burning project that I thought I would share.
I prefer to either use a graphite tracing paper or graphite pencil lead rubbed over the back of my pattern my paper as my tracing media. Graphite leaves a pale to medium gray line on our working surface that has no oil or wax, and therefore is not a permanent marking.
I do like to remove those tracing lines as early in the burning as is reasonable and will even do an extremely pale tonal value burned line before any shading work is done just so that I can erase the graphite right away.
A white artist eraser works wonderfully for wood and gourds. These are our rougher wood burning surfaces. Do not use an eraser that has any coloring ( that pink one on the end of your bright yellow #2 pencil) to it as the color dye can rub off onto your project.
An architect’s eraser pad – a fine mesh cloth bag filled with eraser grindings – is perfect for our finer medias as paper, leather, and chipboard (paper mache). Since the eraser bag is flexible it works well for wood carvers that want to remove any carbon build-up from their wood burning details on the carving.
A dry ‘Magic’ eraser not only removes the graphite lines from your leather or wood project, it also picks up any oil and dirt that has been left from moving your hand across the surface.
In the photo sample above, Feathered Green Man Leather Journal Pyrography Project, I first cleaned the graphite tracing using my Architect’s eraser pad. Then I followed up with a light cleaning using the dry ‘Magic’ eraser … and,wow!, was I surprised at how much more dirt I picked up …
That ‘Magic’ eraser is now a permanent addition to my pyrography tool kit.
Step 1: Download your free doodle patterns, here at LSIrish.com. To discover more free patterns type doodle into the search box in the header of this page.
Step 2: Using a fine-point permanent marking pen, doodle around the lower section of the outside of your clay pot. For contrast, leave the rim of the pot without decoration. Work over some of your pattern lines several times to create a thick-and-thin outline effect.
Step 3: Wrap the thin twin around the bottom edge of the rim three times. Tie the twine tightly. Use a few drops of acrylic glue to hold the knot and twine into place. Allow the glue to dry.
Step 4: Cut a 2 yard long piece of thin twine. Thread the three gold-colored bells onto the thread, and move them to the center point of the thread. Bring the two ends of the thread together, tie a knot with the two threads about 1 1/2″ above the bells.
Step 5: Slide one 3/4″ twine bead onto the two threads and position the bead above the knot made in step 4. Tie a knot in the threads that sits on top of the bead.
This wind chimes follows the same step-by-step instructions as our Doodle Wind Chimes. The free doodles where printed on card stock paper, cut, and double-stick taped into place. This is a quick wedding decoration.
Step 6: Tie the two twine threads into a third knot the height of your clay pot away from the top of the bead. If your clay pot is 3 1/2″ tall, this third knot is made 3 1/2″ away from the bead.
Step 7: Cut two 1 1/4″ long pieces from the bamboo kitchen skewer. Tie one piece with a knot tightly above the third knot. Slide the twine, from the inside to the outside, through the hole in the bottom of the clay pot. Lay the second bamboo piece between the two twine ends, on the bottom of the pot, and secure with a tight knot. These two bamboo sticks hold the bell clapper in place.
Step 8: Hold one end of the burlap ribbon between your thumb and the side of your palm. Open your fingers as wide as possible. Wrap the ribbon over your fingers four to five times, leaving at least a 4″ long end.
Step 9: Carefully remove the wrapped burlap ribbon from your hand and place it, centered, between the two twine threads. Tie a tight knot in the twine to secure the burlap ribbons.
Step 10: Tie a knot in the twine threads 4″ to 5″ from what is now the top of your wind chime. Clip the ends to about 1/2″ long.
Step 11: Working one burlap ribbon loop at a time, turn each loop inside-out. This gives your ribbon that lovely curl.
Step 12: Use gold glitter glue to add little dots of bright, sparkling accents to your doodle pattern. Allow the glue to dry thoroughly, and your wind chime is ready to hang.
Artist morgue files are more than just a pile of pattern ideas. Your morgue file is a great place to keep those project ideas that catch your interest.
DIY Gift Pin Cushion Project
a ball of scrap yarn a 3 /12″ clay flower-pot 2 yards of burlap twine acrylic glue 6 rubber bands assorted marking pens assorted glitter gel pens.
Instead of hot glue or white glue, we will be using the rubber bands around the yarn ball to hold the yarn in place against the inside wall of the clay pot. This secures the yarn tightly into the pot, yet allows you to remove and replace the yarn ball if necessary.
For more free LSIrish.com Doodle Patterns type ‘doodle’ into the search box in the header of this page.
Step 1: Using a fine point permanent marking pen, doodle assorted designs onto the lower section of your clay pot.
Step 2: Accent the doodle designs with colored marking pens and with glitter gel pens. Allow the gel pen work to dry for about 10 minutes before you move to the next step.
Step 3: Wrap the burlap twine around the underside of the clay pot rim three times. Tie the ends into a bow and clip the ends to about 2″ long. Use several drops of acrylic glue to secure the bow and to hold the twine to the pot. Allow to dry.
Step 4: Grab those little bits of scrap yarn that you have been saving. Wrap the yarn into a semi-tight ball … tighter than you would normally wrap for knitting or crochet, but not so tight that the ball becomes excessively hard. You want your yarn ball about 1/2″ wider in diameter than the opening of your clay pot. Tie off the end of the yarn.
Step 5: Place five to six rubber bands around the center of your yarn ball. Slid the yarn ball into the top of your clay pot so that the rubber bands are about 1/2″ below the pot rim. Tuck in any loose yarn loops with your scissors.
Step 6: Your loose straight pins, needles, and safety pins will sit nicely in the yarn ball, while your doodling will add a little sparkle and decoration to your sewing table.
Step 7: Make another one for your favorite sewing friend!
Tracing a Pattern There are several ways to transfer a pattern to a carving blank – carbon paper, graphite paper and pencil rubbing. All three products transfer a pattern to wood, but which you use is determines by the craft you are working.
Carbon paper Originally used to make multiple copies of a typed or written document, carbon paper comes in black or dark blue. Tracings made using this product have heavy, dark, bold lines. Carbon paper is perfect for transferring patterns for long-term projects, as the traced lines will not fade or rub off, even after many hours of carving work. However, carbon paper creates a traced line that can not be erased with an eraser, and often can not be removed with fine sandpaper. I use carbon paper with my wood carvings, but never with pyrography.
Graphite paper This paper is lightweight with a waxed graphite coating on one side, and comes in both pale gray and white. When tracing a pattern, the graphite side is placed against the wood, resulting in a tracing with medium-gray colored lines. Graphite paper is available in sheets as small 8 1/2″ x 11” (216 x 279mm) and as large as 48” x 96” (1219 x 2438mm), and also comes in rolls several yards long. Graphite paper can be used several times, so keep previously used pieces for later tracings. This product works well for both carving and wood burning.
Pencil Rubbing To use the pencil rubbing method for transferring a pattern, rub a soft #2 to #6 pencil over the back of your pattern paper. The higher the number of your pencil, the darker or blacker the rubbing will be. Then, place the pattern face up on your carving blank and begin tracing it. As you trace along the pattern lines, a thin, light gray coating of pencil will be left on the wood blank. Pencil rubbing lines can be erased using a white artist’s eraser, making it an excellent method for transferring patterns for carvings that will include some pyrography work. This is my favorite form of tracing as it is so easily removed after your pyrography or carving work is done.
Simple steps for tracing a pattern Tracing a pattern onto your carving blank is an important step; you want to make sure you center the pattern on the wood. Follow these steps to trace a pattern using graphite paper.
1 Gather your supplies. To transfer a pattern to your wood blank, you will need a copy of the pattern, carbon paper, an ink pen, a ruler, a T-square, and tape.
2 Mark the center of the blank. Using your ruler and T-square, mark the center of the carving blank using a horizontal center line and a vertical center line
3 Align the pattern with the center lines. Fold the copy of the pattern into quarters. Place the pattern on the blank, aligning the fold lines in the paper with the center lines drawn on the blank. Tape the pattern into place .
4 Adjust the pattern as needed to fit the shape of the wood. For our sample tracing the board has a curved top that affects the placement of the pattern. By sliding the design down along the vertical line the square pattern is now centered to the square area of the plaque.
5 Place the carbon paper, and trace. Mark any adjustments necessary on your pattern. Slide the carbon paper in place under the pattern paper, and trace along the outside lines of your grouped elements. Check your tracing before you remove the pattern and carbon paper to ensure you have transferred all the necessary pattern lines .
6 Create a border if desired. If you like, you can use a compass to create an outside border or margin line around the pattern .
7 Add in the details as you carve. As you progress through the carving stages, cut small pieces of your original pattern paper, secure them to your wood blank, and trace the fine line details to that roughly cut areas.
8 Print several copies of your pattern. As you work you will often find that your carving will cut away some areas of the traced pattern or that your burned shading will obscure some areas of your traced line. You can cut small sections of your extra pattern out from the larger design and spot trace as needed.