Last week at my WI meeting we had a pyrography workshop, it was lovely as everyone had a go including many who don’t consider themselves ‘crafty’ and everyone went home with a lovely piece they had made.

Pyrography is when you burn a design onto wood. It’s done with a special pen-like tool which has a wire tip, this heats up to something ridiculous like 1400’C. The tutor told us to try and do smooth lines, starting and finishing gently to avoid a spotty line…easier said than done! The size and depth of the burn depended on how long the heat was applied.

We were each given a wooden coaster and a sheet with lots of designs on, I was planning to make a sewing themed one but the designs were things like flowers, celtic crosses etc so I decided to do a bee. We traced the design onto the coaster and then started to etch the design.

I went round the basic shape first and then filled in the legs as dark as I felt I could make it. I etched the dark stripes next. We learnt that by using a lighter touch you could colour areas in so I just used short light lines for the bits that would be yellow.

I ummed and arred for a while trying to think of an apt short saying, then Sewing Bee came to mind, perfect! I wrote in on a piece of paper first and then traced it. It’s a little uneven but I’m pretty pleased with it. One of the lads at work said he would put some kind of sealant or varnish on it so it’ll be a bit more resistant to damp cups of tea!

We had time to make a second item, I decided on another coaster as we only had about half an hour left. I used a robin design this time. I tried to do a sort of feather pattern on his back and I love his beady little eye, that was just a single burn left on a bit longer. I was fairly pleased with the actual etching but I then decided to colour the red bit in. Somehow it doesn’t look right, I haven’t worked out how to improve it yet. I’m not sure if it needs to be bigger, or if the outline across makes it look more like a stripe. It doesn’t help that the paint ‘bled’u up the grain a bit.

I’m pretty pleased with my coasters and it was lovely to try another craft.

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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9 Responses to Pyrography

  1. tialys says:

    You’ve done a great job Margaret. I know the feeling when you finish something and are happy with it and then add ‘just another little touch’ and you feel as if you’ve spoilt it. He’s still a lovely robin and it was only your second go after all,

    Liked by 1 person

  2. katechiconi says:

    Pyrography is such fun, but as I’m sure you discovered, you need a very steady hand and a bit of confidence. Lots of practice makes you more skilled at achieving the effects you want, but can be a bit time consuming. Also, the right wood to work on is so important – too much resin in the wood and the nib skips and either burns too much or too little.
    I love your bee, it reminds me of this pieceI made years ago:(

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great piece featuring the WI

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think you’ve done really well. I get that smudgy edges might look more realistic but you have to work with the medium as presented. I like the leaks. I’m sure not all robins fit the mood. You’ve tempted me to have a go. Brill.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Jane M says:

    They are both beautiful, it is great to try a new craft. How about “Robins appear when loved ones are near” – may be too many words for a small space

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Amo says:

    They look great! I wonder if you could try on another piece with the red colour and then a tiny touch of bleach to see if it would take the colour out of the bleed. Bearing in mind that the bleach may bleed if too much.

    Liked by 1 person

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