Shiplap – make your own!

Thanks to Joanna Gaines of HGTV’s “Fixer Upper,” everyone seems to want shiplap in their houses!

I’ve been making my own shiplap for many years, and it’s not difficult to do.
Put dado blades on your table saw and cut a rabbet that takes away half the thickness of your wood. Flip the wood and make a rabbet on the other long edge. If that sounds confusing, a picture is worth a thousand words: 
Your boards then overlap and can be made in any thickness and any width, depending on the use.
I used shiplap on the back of my buffet that I posted about here on my blog in 2010.
Shiplap allows wood to expand and contract with the seasons. The gaps between each board will widen during dry weather and get narrower during times of higher humidity.
Have you made your own shiplap?
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Carved Heart and Initials

Since this is a slow time around here I’ve been experimenting with some new ideas for my shop. I’ll get to those some other time because I thought I should first get some Valentines related projects made and available in my etsy shop. 

I have created this from 100 year old Prince Edward Island barnboard. Each piece is cut from the original 11 1/2″ wide boards with character that can only be obtained by years of weathering. I used a router to carve out the heart which is about 8″ x 8″ and the initials which are 1 1/2″ tall and from 1″ to 1 1/2″ wide. Of course it is supposed to look as if initials are carved into a tree!

I think this looks small in photos, but it’s 15 1/2″ tall x 11 1/2″ wide x 1/2″ thick.

You can see the texture of this beautiful barnboard by looking at the next photo.

On the back is a hanger.


Here it is hanging in my shop with a few other items for sale.

Available through my Etsy shop 

Heart Carved Sign

Old Wood Angels

A few weeks ago I used some old boards to make two angels. 

Just using a jigsaw, I rounded the top of one board for the head and neck and scalloped the bottom edges of the other board. (I just “winged it.”)
I attached the wing part on the back with a couple of screws, this makes it easy to take apart to store for next year.
One angel was dry brushed with white paint. I also painted white on all the edges.
My angels are about 25″ tall and wide, but you could make them larger or smaller.
Something very simple, but effective.
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Doll Cradle

Doll Cradle 

A local woman came into my shop a few weeks ago asking if I could make a doll cradle for her granddaughter. She also brought in an old cradle that was similar, but smaller than the one she wanted. I just made the parts so that the cradle would fit the little girl’s favourite doll.

I used pine for this cradle and there are five pieces, two ends (the “headboard” is larger than the “footboard”), two sides and a bottom. 

Cradle Pieces 
The ends are attached to the sides with wood screws and then covered with wood plugs, the bottom is glued with a few finishing nails along the sides.
My customer wanted this painted so I used a good primer and then painted the cradle with a white interior semi-gloss paint.
Doll Cradle 
I hope the little recipient of this gift enjoys many hours of play with it.

Christmas Sleds

I thought I had already blogged about these sleds I made, but I realize I had only shared them on facebook.

Christmas Sled 
I like the idea of an old wood sled for Christmas décor, so decided to make a couple to put in my store. For the white and green sleds I used 1″ x 4″ spruce strapping which is readily available at any building type store. I wouldn’t use it for furniture, but it’s good for this application. The JOY sled is made with old grey boards that I had waiting around.
For the white and green sleds I made runners about 45″ long and put a dowel between them at the top and two braces spaced out to attach the top boards to. The deck boards were cut in an arch shape. This green one shows the boards clearly.
I painted the runners red and one sled white with a holly circle-shaped design around a large initial “R.” Then I personalized the sled with our names.
The grey boards I had were old and thick and I only had enough to make a shorter sled, it’s 35″ tall and decorated with JOY to the world.
JOY Christmas Sled 
They do make a nice decoration for outside the front door.
Christmas Sled 
Christmas Sled  
These sleds are basically an enlarged version of the two sleds I made a few years ago that are 22″ long. 
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Wood Wall in Office


My husband needed a small office in the old house that my workshop and retail store is in. If you are following this blog you might remember that I put a new laminate floor in the front room that houses my store.  I used the old flooring  taken from that area and put it in a bedroom upstairs.

I figured the wall colour might not be the best for Eric, so I first patched the cracks in the drywall, and then painted the ceiling in white. And then the walls were painted a light green called “Maid of the Mist” by Benjamin Moore.
On one wall I decided to put a huge map of the USA and Canada, Eric being a long-haul trucker has been to pretty much everywhere in these two countries. Around the map I wanted to put planks of wood to make a feature wall that he would face when sitting at his desk.
So, I first painted brown in the areas where the wood would be placed. (This avoids purple from showing through any gaps in the wood pieces)
I used 1″ x 4″ strapping and stained it in four different shades, from light to dark. After finding and marking where the studs were behind the drywall (I use a strong magnet) I cut the wood into lengths that ended on studs so that I could use my pin-nailer to nail the wood right into the studs. 
I worked around where the map would go and just overlapped it by about 1/2″ on each edge. I really should have had help putting up the map, it’s laminated in plastic and fell on my head a few times, leaving some crease marks, unfortunately. (I did all of this work myself)
In the corner behind the door there were some shelves made of pressed wood. I replaced them with shelves I made from the same stained wood that I put on the walls. The corner area was painted white, I’m thinking I may go back and paint that the same green as the walls, but it’s white for now.
 It all turned out quite nicely, I’ve just been looking for a good used solid wood desk. If I can’t find one I’ll have to make one, I guess.

O come let us adore Him




This is the second piece of wall décor I made with a Christmas hymn theme. Yesterday I showed

O Holy Night and today this one is “O come let us adore Him.”

I used 100 year old island barn board with lots of character and cut a star out of it with my jigsaw.
Because the board is so worn, (there are very deep grooves) I sanded across a 4″ section right at the bottom. This made it easier to be able to paint a white background and then paint the wording. Between the star and the song lyrics, I painted a small manger scene.
This star is lit up with LED lights which are hot-glued on the back. The battery pack sits behind the board, on a cross piece of wood.
You may notice the top of the board is at an angle, this is the way the board must have been used on the barn!
This one-of-a-kind piece measures 23″ x 11 1/2″
and is available in my shop along with all the other things you see here on the blog
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O Holy Night

I’ve been working on a few things for Christmas time. This is something I made after buying a battery powered string of lights and wanting to use it on some type of wall décor.

I glued three pieces of old grey wood together side-by-side and cut out a star with my jigsaw. The wording was hand painted and then I used hot glue to attach the tiny LED lights on the back. Two cross pieces at the top and bottom of the back help to bring the wood away from the wall to give room for the light to shine, and also space to hold the battery pack.
 It really looks better in my person, especially in a dark room, but hopefully you get the idea.



15  1/2″ x 14 1/2″ available in my shop or by contacting me
I’ll show another similar piece tomorrow.