“Rustic Buisness Card Holder”


Rustic Business Card Holder

So here’s one I finished recently and as I was going through some of my ‘wood art’ on Saturday, I decided to say yes to and post as a project.

Often when I am cutting up a tree in the woods I will cut these buttons off and leave them around to start drying out, while I keep on moving and working the woods. I found this one while walking about, out in the woods two springs ago and knew there was a story here, so into the canvas backpack this one went as we both continued together on our way. Arriving back at the barn, I then put these and assorted others, some outside to continue weathering in character and some to the inside of the barn where they will then finish drying.

Inside I debarked this one right away and started carving out what was on the inside of the button to speed up the drying process. This I will do on the inside and outside of the wood with my usual pocket knives that are always close at hand. I’m not usually real particular at this point as I’m only going after removal of dead wood and then also….the spirit of the wood is sure to guide my hand. This is the fun of doing rustic, I don’t even have to have a complete picture in my mind of where I am going, but there is the ‘just knowing’ that where I am going is not only up to just me!

After a time of finish drying I then sit with the wood and get a further direction as to what this one is meant to be….and as I sat, the image came of a card holder. Taking time now with assorted gouges and spoons, I finished carving and cleaning the outside and inside of the wood, to the shape that has now been wrote within my head. Next comes a time of sanding and with this one, I went through the grits to a stopping point of #400 and then comes the #0000 steel wool.

For a finish I started with two coats of tung oil which I also tinted with artist oils of red and then proceeded to coat all the wood with four coats of shellac. After allowing to dry I sanded all wood again with #0000 steel wool. It is now at this point that I divided up the finishing process of this piece of maple wood.

 With the darker piece of wood in the middle I continued on with four more coats of shellac, followed again with #0000 steel wool and then finished up with four more coats of shellac.


Going to the base I paid special attention to steel wooling through all coats of shellac and yet being careful to not go into the wood grain where there was still some tinting or highlighting coming from the tinted tung oil. By doing this I was able to get back to the original maple color of the wood, while also there remains the tints of red running deep in the grain of the wood. At this point I then applied two coats of hand rubbed varnish and then after allowing time for drying, I again steel wooled the base, being careful to not cut through the varnish. After a time of drying, I then applied four more coats of hand rubbed varnish, ….

….I then proceeded to turn my attention to the underside of the base area where I applied four coats of shellac and the lightly steel wooled the base. You will notice as one of my trademarks that there is always a point of reference as to where the piece of wood comes from, hence on my ‘wood art’ there is always to be found some starting point. This is where you will usually find, that at some point on the wood there are the saw marks, that show the where and how I referenced the wood from. This is real wood, brought out by real hands with the use of chain saw, machine saw or hand saw and so shall this way ever be!

To me this is a fun piece and one of the pieces that I will often do when I am in the midst of ‘the process’ of something bigger and sometimes need a place of art to go to, where I can rest, play and clear my head….

Can I say done….DONE!!!

This piece is what I call ’free form sculptured wood art’ and yes; “Rustic Business Card Holder” is for sale.


~ by frank on March 6, 2007.

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