State Flag Wood Slice Ornaments

Crafting with friends is always better than crafting alone, so when Jonna came over we worked together to tackle my state craft goal, We brainstormed a bunch of ideas, then jumped right in with these wood slice ornaments, inspired by state flags. I made Alabama, Arizona, and New Mexico. Jonna made Colorado and Alaska. Affiliate links below. 

State Flag Wood Slice Ornaments



Use a pencil and a centering ruler to sketch your design on the wood slice. Here I'm working out the stripes on the Arizona flag. If I were teaching this to students, I'd use the opportunity to pull out the protractors and practice those skills. 

Color your design with acrylic paint. Getting into those small areas was challenging with Arizona. I did all the yellow stripes, then all the red stripes. I filled in the blue area, then finished with the orange star.  

When the paint is dry, add a loop of twine so you can hang your ornament. 

For Alabama, I wanted more of a whitewashed look so that it was obvious the base was a wood slice. I watered down the white paint before painting it onto the ornament, then set it aside to dry. Apparently I watered the paint down too much, because the ornament swelled and cracked. However, once it was completely dry, the swelling went away and the crack is barely visible. You can see it around 4:00 below if you look carefully. I used undiluted red paint to add the stripes, then added the twine hanger.   

I used the same whitewashing technique for my third ornament, New Mexico. At this point, I hadn't seen that Alabama had swollen and cracked, so I didn't adjust the amount of water. This ornament has a much more visible crack, located at 7:00. I like that the woodgrain shows through, so if I were to do this again, I’d still want to do a whitewash. (Yellowwash?) I would experiment with using either less water... or a whole lot more water. I’m thinking that soaking the entire wood slice first (versus just wetting the front) might let it swell evenly and prevent cracking, but I’m not sure. Here is my finished ornament.

Jonna started with Colorado. I think she used a pen cap and a paint bottle as tracers for the circles. In the classroom, I'd pull out the compasses to give the kids practice. Kids LOVE compasses.  

This is Jonna's second ornament, Alaska. After the blue background dried, she used the back of the paintbrush to make the yellow stars. 

There aren't many other state flags that would work well for this project. Most of the rest have tiny details or type that would be way too difficult to paint without drastic modifications. For our next project, Jonna and I switched to markers, which let us make projects with more fine detail. I'll share those tomorrow. 

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