This year I used a Glowforge to make Christmas presents for my friends and family. Here are some of my favorites.
Over the last few years I have made many of these entryway organizers. I was originally making them out of pallet wood but eventually grew tired of cutting the pallets into usable pieces and removing all of the nails. Now I use edge glued pine and the build process is much quicker.
Tools I use for this:
I start by cutting a piece 10.5” tall by 15.5” wide. You can substitute using a big panel by gluing together narrower pieces side by side to reach the same dimensions.
Next, I cut the rest of the pieces. I use a table saw to cut the 1.5” strips and 2.5” strips.
Here are all of the pieces:
10.5” x 15.5” panel
Two 1.25” x 15.5” strips
2.5” x 15.5” strip
5.5” x 11.25” piece for mail holder, bottom cut at a 45º angle
Two triangles with longest side measuring 6 5/8”, with one 45º angle and two 157.5º angles (it sounds a lot harder to accomplish than it actually is)
I apply wood glue to each piece before nailing.
I attach the triangle pieces to the mail slot with one nail on the underside and one nail on the top side.
After all of the pieces are assembled and nailed into place. I allow some time for the glue to dry before applying the stain. I also go through and give all of the edges a light sanding.
On this one I am using classic gray wood stain, but this design looks great in any variety of colors.
I add two D-ring picture hangers to the top corners and two clear rubber feet to the bottom corners for wall hanging.
And here is the finished product. Over the years of making these I’ve gotten pretty efficient, this one probably took about 30-45 minutes to make.
Here are a few examples of other styles of organizers I have made using different types of wood, hardware, and wood stain colors.
To continue with my Halloween themed Glowforge creations, here’s a shadowbox I finished today. The idea was inspired by a similar shadowbox being sold on Etsy for $200. This one cost maybe $5 to make, took a couple of hours, and was a whole lot of fun. My only regret is not doing the zombie layer a more visible color. I’m not great at making frames so I decided to make little spider webs to cover the corners of my frame, now you can’t tell that they’re not perfect 🙂
The idea for this came from other Halloween signs I found on Pinterest. For mine, I used a 12” x 36” pine panel to attach all of the pieces to. I cut out all of the letters and shapes out of wood with my laser cutter. If you don’t have a laser, these shapes can be cut out of vinyl with a Cricut or Silhouette machine, another option is to hand paint the shapes. I used the mighthype font for the word happy, and hiragino kaku gothic font for halloween. The spider web and the bats I found doing a google image search.
I acquired a small batch of old fence wood that I ended up using to make some slotted necklace displays. Each one was beautiful and unique. On the initial displays I used a table saw to cut the slots. I eventually moved to using a CNC because of efficiency and precision.
Initially I wanted to replace the fixture entirely but that proved to be too expensive to purchase, and too difficult to replace by myself. The next idea I had was to create a box to cover the ugly fixture (like a tissue box cover) and replace the bulbs with Edison bulbs. Here are before and after photos. On a 1-10 scale of difficulty, I would say it is around a 2 or 3. I used 1/4 inch poplar wood from Home Depot, used a circular saw to cut the pieces to size, and a 1.5” drill bit for the holes. A little glue to assemble and wood stain for the final look.