Ads Top

How to Sand, Stain and Paint Laser Cut Jewelry Designs


I recently introduced my new line of laser cut wood for jewelry designs.  The wood is so much fun to customize with different colors and coloring agents. The sky is the limit!

But as laser cut wood is still new to many jewelry designers, this blog post will show you the many ways to prepare, treat and protect the wood.  Laser cut wood findings are usually unfinished.  Bare wood will soon get grubby with dirt and skin oils.


SANDING
Sanding the wood is good preparation prior to painting. he sanding, either with sandpaper or a sanding block, smooths the surface. I did not see the need to add a primer.

Another reason to sand is to remove the scorch marks from the laser cutting process. The back of the pieces tend to scorch more as these are in contact with the metal grid surface of the laser cutter's bed.
Left : sanded  Right : unsanded
But many people like the scorch marks to remain as a design element. So if you do, just seal the pieces with varnish.

I used a free owl image to test out laser engraving on wood, varying the power and speed of the laser.  As you can see, the scorching increases with more powerful and deeper cuts. It is a matter of personal preference which one likes. But I personally would be inclined to just seal them all as is and not sand or paint them. Painting does mute the look of the engravings.


SEALING

You can seal laser cut wood on their own or after you paint or stain them.

There are a variety of varnishes you can use which can be sprayed or painted on.  You also have the choice of matte, satin or glossy. Pick your favorite.  Below are my favorites to use - not just for wood but all kinds of jewelry crafts.

If you are going with a spray varnish like Krylon's Kamar Varnish, make sure to use it in a well ventilated spot!

See this helpful post by The Graphics Fairy on TOP COATS AND SEALERS FOR CRAFTS – A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE!


STAINING

Without a doubt, the one stellar reason to use wood in jewelry designs is the organic nature of the material. Staining laser cut wood not only adds more color but also serves as protection.


I applied wood stain with a piece of cloth. Wearing gloves is recommended as it gets pretty messy.  You can use any wood stain - you might even have some leftover at home.  I particularly liked the Varathane wood stains in tube form for convenience.  1-2 applications depending on how deep you want the color to be.




Real Pressed Flower Resin Jewelry

PAINTING

I tested out a variety of coloring agents. I did not care for using marker pens because the color bleeds on unfinished wood. First seal the wood if you are trying to draw a design on the wood with marker pens.

The other reason why I don't like marker pen colored wood is the messy result when you use spray varnishes on them. The solvent in the spray spreads the pigments. Tip : do all painting and sealing on waxed paper.  The colors will not soak through to your painting surfaces.


I got different effects with acrylic ink,  ordinary craft acrylic paint and even a water based wood stain. I added 1 -2 drops of acrylic paint into a small amount - about 1 mL -  of the stain base.

As you can see below, the results can vary from a "washed" look to a complete coverage.  My personal preference is for the acrylic paint.

I also tried alcohol inks which reacted the same way as marker pens. I think alcohol inks are best saved for other applications!

Metallic paints are lovely to use.  I recommend the Sargent brand - great coverage.


There are other brands. I like the Craftsmart (Michaels) gunmetal one as used below :

I had trouble with the Craftsmart gold glitter paint - I couldn't quite stir the paint properly. So what I got was a lightish gold "wash" with sparkles. I didn't sweat this problem. I simply used it as the overcoat for other painted designs below. If YOUR bottle works, and you want a wash effect, try diluting the paint.


One easy way to create fun designs is by masking with painter's tape.



I don't like to use too many jump rings in earring designs as they make the earrings longer than I like. One option is to make your own ear wires and ensure the loop is big enough to attach the laser cut wood.

I used Starbond cyanoacrylate glue which I received for review some time ago to attach the stud earrings. These glues are especially formulated for crafts and lapidary work and I like them very much.  It is a less brittle form of the common superglue. Less messy than E6000 and very strong and very durable too. This is the Medium which is an all purpose glue. 



Matches my new top!



Before You Go:


Disclosure
This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.
 ______________________________
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Wire JewelryTips  -Jewelry Business Tips 

3 comments:

  1. I'm looking forward to designing something special with the pieces you sent me.

    I'm wondering if painting them with Gesso would provide enough of a barrier for alcohol inks...

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have tried different colourant on wood before and I too like you prefer acrylic colours. Vintaj patina inks work well too. But its best to add a coat of gesso if we want to make light colours pop. I love your turquoise and black earrings. They look very Art Deco.

    ReplyDelete

You're AWESOME! Thanks for the comment and feedback. You do make a difference on my blog!

Powered by Blogger.