My church recently asked me to make two wall art cutouts in the shape of Africa. This is for an upcoming event we are having and they wanted them to look a little rustic and faded and be able to be hung on a wall. I used reclaimed wood for this and it ended up being a quicker project then I thought it would be. It took me a total of 1 day.
Step 1: Tools & Materials
Fence slats or 1x4's
Step 2: Preparing the Wood Slats
I used reclaimed fence boards that I had used when I made some set pieces for a children's Christmas musical. They were too long to safely rip them on the table saw so I cut them down to smaller sections on the miter saw and then ripped them to 2" strips.
Step 3: Cutting Out Africa
I had a Africa cutout already for a project that I started and never finished. So it was the perfect opportunity for me to use it now. I used hot glue to attach the cut out to another board of mdf. I used a pattern router bit to cut them flush so that I would have two identical pieces to work with.
Step 4: Attaching the Wood to the Mdf
I had to trim a few of the slats on the miter saw so that they would fit on the mdf. I mostly just eye balled the placement of each slat so that the top and the bottom had a little bit of overhang. I put some wood glue down and used my hands as pressure to hold them down. This was fine for now since we will be reinforcing them with nails later.
Step 5: Clamping Optional
If you wanted extra strength you could put some heavy objects or even clamps to hold the slats to the mdf. I didn't need to use either option since one of my interns (Tigger) decided he would simply lay on the two boards for equal amounts of time. Im sure he figured his body weight was enough for this project.
Step 6: Adding Nails
I didnt want any nail holes in the front of the wall art so I flipped the piece over once the glue had dried and shot in 1" nails. A few went all the way through so I grabbed a hammer and pushed them down. They weren't noticeable in the final piece.
Step 7: Finishing
Once the wood was all ready to go I used the pattern bit again and cut off the excess wood. This could have been easily done with a jig saw as well but I already had my router out so I figured I would use it. I added some antiquing stain over the project and wiped off the excess. I then lightly sanded it so make more of the dark stain to show through.
Step 8: Enjoy Your New Wall Art!
I am so happy how this projects came out and you can use these steps for really any shape that you decided to make your wall art. The most important thing was the person I made them for loved them. Let me know in the comments if you have any questions or if you made one.