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Danish Woven Heart Baskets Made Using Wood Veneer Paper! Beautiful !
Submitted by Pam on Wed, 07/09/2014 - 22:43
Not long ago, I sent a photo (at the bottom of the post) of my Alan Dart tomte to a friend in England and received back a reply indicating that it reminded my friend of vintage birch bark Swedish heart baskets he hangs on his holiday tree. And it just so happened, that I was experimenting with BARC white birch wood veneer paper at the time and decided that further experimentation was indicated!!! And here are the results! Lovely woven heart baskets made using wood veneer paper!
If you are not familiar with the technique for weaving heart baskets "julehjerte", you will want to grab some scrap paper and follow the step by step instructions provided HERE!
Once you feel comfortable with the process - or if you are already comfortable - then the notes below will provide a few helpful tips for working with wood veneer paper.
The product I use is from ARC Craft and it is called White Birch Wood Veneer on 2 mil paper. Find it HERE.
All hearts start the same way - by tracing two heart templates onto the paper side of the wood veneer paper.
You may work with or against the wood grain. Both work. Both will weave equally well. But once woven, the hearts will behave in different ways as shown below.
Cut out two heart sections using scissors and then mark and draw the cut lines for the "legs" that will be woven together. Use an Xacto knife to cut the "legs" taking care to cut all the way through the paper and wood layers.
And now you are ready to weave!
The heart on the left was cut against the grain and the heart on the right was cut with the grain. The biggest difference occurs at the top of the basket.
A heart cut against the grain seems to create a top that will lay fairly flat - just a little curl which is quite pretty actually.
A heart cut with the grain will wrinkle at the top as you see above. Diane rather likes this best!!
If you like this "unadorned" natural look, attach a hanging loop with glue, and fill it with goodies!
Or, you can embroider little designs on some or all of the little squares!
Use a hard lead pencil and make very light lines at all the joins. Look carefully - I have tried to mark them darker so you can see. But light pencil is best because heavy lines will be difficult to remove with an eraser.
Mark each section of the weave on which you wish to place an embroidery design. I use little dots!
Now "un-weave" your basket!!! The wood veneer paper actually allows you to do this quite easily - in fact it seems easier than doing so with paper.
In my case, all my dots appeared on one heart section!
Notice all the little marked squares and the dots marking the squares on which I will create a little mini embroidery.
Use a thin needle to mark the holes in your design where your embroidery needle will be placed.
I actually sort of just did this step by eye, but certainly you could draw the design on the paper side and then make your needle holes.
If you look closely, you can see the configurations of needle holes for both stars and trees.
Complete the embroidery and re-weave the heart!
Note: In my experience, one strand of floss is the best choice so your stitches will not interfere with the weaving process.
Simple designs are best. Too many holes too close together will result in unwanted tears in the material.
I have to admit this one is my favorite!!
I was delighted to find that craft scissors will easily cut beautiful edges. I cut only along the outside edges at the top of the heart and the strip for hanging. Haven't experimented with the "legs" - yet!
The wood side of the wood veneer paper will take color beautifully. The stain accentuates the wood grain which makes it even prettier!
Sharpies, gel pens, and Pitt pens are all great for adding small touches of color. However, to "wash" the entire surface of the heart template with color, a watercolor paint set designed for kids works well.
Apply the color as evenly or unevenly as you like.
Note that the wood veneer paper will curl almost any time it comes in contact with "wet" materials like paint or Mod Podge. But once the paint (or glue) is dry, a little time under a heavy book will cure the problem. In any case, once the heart is woven, the curl is gone anyway!
Weave the two sides of the heart together, attach a hanging loop and fill with goodies!
Someone could even make an Advent calendar garland using these little hearts! I am not going to because I already have 6 very active Advent Calendars and am currently occupied with a knitted Advent Tree designed by Alan Dart (which I am sharing later this month).
But "someone" could make one. I am just saying'.
Tomte knitted from a pattern by Alan Dart. Jultomtar.
Little birch wood hearts are fun to make! Pretty on trees! Great on packages! Cool as garland! Make some and share!!! I would love to see yours!!