I think we all have been there. We forgot a Birthday of someone dear to us! I do it a lot, and even putting a reminder on my phone won’t work, because one minute the alarm goes off and the other minute I have already forgotten about it. I mean it is crazy how much stuff happens during our day! And even if I remember it just in time, I more than often haven’t prepared something or organized a gift! So, in order to never miss an important Birthday again, I thought about getting a Birthday Calendar!
There are so many variations out there, but I wanted something DIY and personalized. One thing that drew my attention was a wooden DIY Birthday Calendar, from which you hang wooden hearts or discs with important dates! I got my hands on a couple of blank ones and got to work! I also wanted to use my pyrography tool to make it look rustic!
Materials for a DIY Birthday Calendar
You will need to have these items to make a DIY Birthday Calendar:
- A blank wooden plaque of your desired size, (with already drilled holes for each month, or you will need to drill them by yourself). You might need some sanding paper to sand everything down, depending on the quality of the wood.
- Wooden hearts or discs with holes and hooks (you can find and buy them together)
- A printed template of the design you want to have on the board that matches the size of your plate (if you are talented enough, you can draw the design directly onto the plate)
- Adhesive tape
- Carbon paper sheet that matches the size of your plate
- Pyrography tool (wood burning tool)
- Red marker or red pencil
- Brown marker
- Pencil or pen
- Rope or string for hanging
- Wood stain or a strong coffee – black tea mixture for staining
I also wanted to stain my plaque and hearts, so I prepared my very own wood stain by using ultra-strong coffee and tea made with a good amount of instant coffee, some black tea bags, and just enough water so it is a thick yet still fluid mixture (you don’t want a paste). You also can use some store-bought wood stain if you want, but I wanted to do it with natural ingredients. I applied this stain with a simple large brush and everything came out beautiful!
Step-by-step instructions to make a wooden DIY Birthday Calendar
I tried to keep it simple! First I got a suitable blank wooden plaque with twelve holes for the months and two holes for hanging with a set of blank wooden hearts and assembly rings. You can sand them down a little if needed. Then I found a simple, yet beautiful drawing of the Tree of Life, which I love as a theme! And it fits the family theme, too! Next, I found some calligraphy font to write “Celebrations and Birthdays”. In Greece, our Name Day Celebration day is as important as our Birthday is, so I wanted to have those, too! Next, I used image processing software to complete the design. I also used the same font to write the first letter of each month. Then, I printed and cut it out exactly the size my plaque was.
The next step was to transfer my design onto the plaque so I can burn it into the wood with the pyrography tool. If you are talented enough, you can draw your design directly onto the plaque, but I definitely need help, hahah! To transfer the design, you first have to use adhesive tape to secure one side of the design onto the plaque. Make sure to have it oriented correctly, keeping in mind which side the holes are. Then, you have to put a large enough piece of carbon sheet paper correctly between your design and the wooden plaque. Now it’s time to take a pencil or a pen and go over each and every point or line of your design, so everything gets transferred onto the plaque. Don’t forget to draw the first letter of each month over each hole, too!
Once done with transferring, it’s time for pyrography!! Remove the template and carbon sheet and you should see the design transferred onto the wooden plaque (forgot to take a photo of this!). If you don’t see the transfer, check if you put the carbon sheet with the correct side on the plaque and between the template and plaque. Also, you see if you might need a better pen to make the transfer. Of course, you can skip this part and use markers to paint over the design, or you can choose an overall different technique, like decoupage or painting it. I carefully used my wooden burn tool to go over every detail of the design.
When I was finished, I was ready to stain the plaque and hearts.
After staining and letting everything dry completely, I used the red marker to paint the apples of the tree and the brown marker to write on the hearts. On one side of the heart, I wrote down the date and on the other the name of the person that was celebrating.
I first tried to use the wooden burn tool for the dates and names as well, but I found it too difficult to use it on such a small surface. So I chose to use the brown marker instead, making everything easier.
Finally, I assembled the calendar by putting each heart under the correct month using the rings. Then I used the string for hanging it on the wall and there it was! My DIY Birthday Calendar!
More ideas for DIY crafts
I loved how the birthday calendar came together and how it looked! It helps me immensely in keeping up with all the celebrations. I can see at a glance how many and what celebrations are coming up each month, so I can prepare in time!
It is always fun to make something yourself! Decoupaging is another great way to decorate wooden plaques and items. You can read how I did decoupage on a plate and a bottle here!
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