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I used to love wedding centerpieces, but since we had to replace a couple of them I couldn’t justify spending a fortune. Instead, I started making wedding centerpieces out of cheap wood slices. I use the same two pieces I used for the centerpieces to make a variety of different types of “trees”.
This is probably one of the easiest DIY wood carving projects you can do that doesn’t involve tools. If you’re into that sort of thing, check out the video in the link at the end of this paragraph.
We use the same two pieces I use to carve our wedding centerpieces, but we carve them for different purposes. The two different pieces we carve for are for the front and back of all the trees, and the rest of the pieces can be used to make the tops and bottoms of the trees as well.
The best part about the video is the way it uses only the finest quality wood. We live in an area where there are trees that are just starting to come into season. We get several shipments of oak every year that are just about gone. The cost of the oak is more expensive than the kind of wood we use. We use an old piece of oak that is just starting to lose its gloss, so we only buy it in the very last shipment of oak.
The video shows a table saw that can make an individual piece of wood that is about five inches long. In fact, the video shows one piece of oak that is around six inches.
We use cheap wood for our wedding centerpieces. There is a lot of overlap between wedding centerpieces and the cheaper wood slices. We use cheap wood because it’s cheap, because it’s easy, because it’s light, and because it’s all that’s needed to make a really pretty centerpiece.
Cheap wood slices do have a few disadvantages though. One, the cost is high. You have to get one of these slices to work with your table saw. Two, the quality of the wood can be an issue. Cheap wood slices are more likely to be stained or varnished; something that will eventually show through the surface of the wood. Cheap wood slices tend to be less durable than the more expensive wood slices, but the quality is generally comparable.
The other disadvantage of cheap wood slices is that they don’t hold up well. Cheap wood slices can get scratched or otherwise damaged, and cheap wood slice are more difficult to clean than expensive wood slices. There are some cheap wood slices that are stainable but their surfaces are more prone to staining. That’s another reason why you need to stain your expensive wood slices or else they will start to show through.
The question is, do cheap wood slices stand up well to the wear and tear of everyday use? I believe they do. There are a few cheap wood slices that are stainable. And if you clean them properly they will stay stain resistant.
When it comes to cheap wood slices, the thing to watch out for is surface scratches. Once they are scratch-free and stain-free they will last for years of regular use. It’s also a good idea to make your expensive wood slices last longer by using natural wood stain before you stain them.