DIY- Wooden aztec / native wall art or drinks tray

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Hi Guys - today i got for you another easy wooden tutorial ( that for me is a practice run before i attempt to make a dining table in using similar technique) - This DIY doesn't require great level of skill and i am not just saying that - it looks more difficult than it is to make it plus possibilities when it comes to design you can make are endless .
As mentioned already my practice peace was made in a size 45cm x 45cm it only cost me £7 (in materials only - providing you got the tools) -that price included wood, also what i used from paint tester pots , glue and rough price of an off cut of mdf board ( you can use anything really more about it a little later )
I will give you Three options for "frame " so you can finish it yourself- one of the option was suggested to me by @jodecomania- and saves extra

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Materials :( for my size art)

  • MDF, Furniture board , ply or backing of the photo frame in the size of your choice- check charity shops , your friends maybe they have something , or places like ikea
  • wall paint tester pots in the colour or colours of your choice - you might even have some paint already at home
  • 2 x 2,5 meter thin pieces of wood
  • hand Mitre saw with mitre box (you can buy this as a set in any diy store )  or an electric mitre saw - all pieces will be cut at the same angle 45 degrees and just turned either way to save time
  • measuring tape
  • pencil
  • sanding paper
  • 1 tube of cheap wood glue or better equally as cheap " instant grab adhesive "
    -for design idea - look in google under "native wooden wall art" or " "Aztec wooden wall art"

for frame:

  • L shaped wooden/mdf angle molding (from any diy store ), flat peace of wood or a ready madepicture frame

optional - to make a drinks tray :

  • 2 handles
  • 4 screws
  • lacquer or varnish to protect the paint
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    How To Make it:
    1- measure all 4 sides of the board and find a half way points them mark them all , using a piece of wood draw straight lines from top to bottom and from side to side - if your frame is perfect square draw two extra diagonal lines going from corner to corner if its rectangle then dont bother ;)

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    2 - you start off exactly like i did in the diy headboard post ( you can view more photos here )

    Measure a distance from the center to a nearest end of the board at a 45 degree angle (so both of pieces of wood will form a V shape) ( and allow few cm extra just to be sure )
    cut your first 2 pieces of wood at a 45 degree angle to do this :

    • If you are using a a compound Mistre saw  then just set the dial to 45 degrees
    • if you are using a hand saw and mitre box- click here for a "blonde set up"  -

    You can cut all pieces same way and just turn them on the other side - you will have 45 degree angle either way ;)
    Once you got your 2 pieces "join them " right where the center lines cross - just like i did so they form a V shape and repeat the step directly above so you get 2 v shapes facing in opposite directions ( top and bottom ;)  Then do the sides - this will be your starting point .
    slowly start cutting and filling the space around with wood pieces-to save wood i first started on the biggest pieces and saved any off cuts so i could later fill the smaller v shapes like in the photo up- i was simply going around the whole board laying wood from biggest pieces down to smaller ones ;)

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    3- Draw your design - i found the design i liked on google under "Native wooden wall art " and "Aztec wooden wall art" - and most of the pieces in the design looked like they were cut at the same angle so i used one of the pieces of wood i already cut for the deign as a rough guide, and as I was drawing the design onto a wood i also wrote what colours are going well - it will save you time.

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    4- Once your design is drawn and all the colors are marked - it is time to cut all the pieces of wood - take one piece of wood at the time and cut along the line of your drawing - there might be more than one cut depending on your design - then put all the peaces where you took them from and do this to all other peaces - don't trim the ends off just yet , but do sand down your wood so its smooth

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    5- Now this is also the important part - and it will save you time - carefully start removing a peace at the time and draw its pattern on the board like i did in 3 pic above - it densest have to be perfect but it willhelps - also write a " a color" that goes in there and number your peaces- and on the side of the wood that wont get painted quite a corresponding number that is on the board

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    6- once your board and your wood peaces are numbered - start painting them , allow the paint to dry or if you are as impatient as i am - use a hairdryer to speed up the process

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    7- Once your painted peaces of wood are dried - find all the corresponding peace sand start gluing them from the middle going outwards - i used instant grab adhesive once you reached the ends where the wood needs to be trimmed carefully lift the board and rest it on something - books , paint tins , mugs - anything really - just so you can "trace the shape underneath of the very end of the board to the wood )- then before applying adhesive trim the wood and then glue it into place - let the adhesive set - i left mine overnight
     

    Joanna - @jodecomania used ikea Ribba frame to frame her beautifual wall art

    Joanna - @jodecomania used ikea Ribba frame to frame her beautifual wall art

    8 - Framing options
    You can make a frame in 3 ways - i start from the easiest one first
    Existing photo frame - The easiest way and most cost effective if you are using a backboard from the existing frame is actually saving yourself time and effort and placing your wooden wall art in the frame -securing from behind with few screws like a friend of mine Joanna - @jodecomania did in a photo above she have used a IKEA Ribba frame to frame her beautiful wall art
    L shaped angle molding - if you want to hide some of uneven cuts and don't have a frame at hand - go to any diy store and purchase an L shaped angle molding ( it looks like a triangle or something you use in the corner ;)  - cut the ends at a 45 degree angle so that the peaces slot together( it should look like a frame ( see pic below )
    Flat piece of wood - i
    t also works well - and you do not have to cut at at an angle if you dont want to do it but you need to make sure your wood wall art is evenly trimmed   - for example and framing tutorial see my diy headboard post

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    To make a drinks tray
    once your art is framed simply spray lacquer it or varnish it - then screw in 2 handles either end and you are all done

     

    I hope you have enjoyed this little DIY tutorial and this post will encourage you to try it for yourself
    Love Pati x

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