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August 5, 2012
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Jul 30, 2012, 11:32:55 AM
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Handmade Wand JE-532y by PraeclarusWands Handmade Wand JE-532y by PraeclarusWands
Wand no. 56, commissioned by, designed by, and made for James-Egbert! This wand is 13.5" long and was carved by hand from a birch dowel from Home Depot over the course of about 9 hours. It was sanded with 60, 100, 150, 300, and 600 grit sandpaper, stained with ebony stain, and sealed with two coats of acrylic varnish. The twisting vine designs were done with a woodburning tool.

Praeclarus Wands and the Praeclarus Wands logo are trademarks of Maranda Li. Please don't upload my work to other places without asking first! (That's stealing.)

Usual disclaimer: My crafts are in no way associated with religious/occult beliefs. Wandmaking is only a hobby and is my way of showing support for J.K. Rowling's wonderful world. All wand designs I make will not be repeated and are my original designs (and thus are (c) to me), and do not intentionally bear resemblance to any other wands found anywhere unless stated otherwise.

Used with permission as the cover of this HP fanfic: A Wand With a Veela's Hair Core
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Rikky-Tikki-Tavi Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Your works where you used the wood burning tool are some of my favourite, and has inspired me to get one! My mother is a carver, so she is right on board with the idea. We just have to move and get or hands on some money first. I'm very excited to get settled and start carving for real, and very excited for my mother to get back into it.
PraeclarusWands Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
That's awesome! It's definitely a lot of fun to use. (Just don't drink coffee before you start burning stuff...)
Rikky-Tikki-Tavi Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Haha, I think I'll be alright, not a big fan of coffee. :P
Is there anything I should know about it before I purchase one? I've been looking for information on it, but there doesn't seem to be much up from people who actually use this tool.
PraeclarusWands Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Not really... if you're not planning to do full-on pyrography art, then you'll only really need the basic universal tip and maybe the shading tip; the other ones are good to have, but not needed (and you'll save some money too while you're at it). I got the Walnut Hollow Creative Versa-tool back when it didn't come with temperature control and was only $20 (and I used a 50% coupon so I got it for $10...good deal.), so I got a lot of tips that I didn't need. I tried a few of them out, but I found that I kept going back to the universal tip since that one did everything.

It's definitely a good idea to practice a lot on scrap wood before starting on a project. It's kinda tricky to use, since burning the wood makes an indent, which makes it difficult to guide the tool at a constant speed, which leads to jagged and uneven lines. But it definitely gets easier with practice.
SoulFood1 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I have only just started looking at your wands but I am a HUGE FAN of your work! I have just started hand making wands of my own and I have only made a few but not even the best ones come close to the caliber of work that you do here. I also have never used a dowel, I've only used branches. Any tips from a master wand maker to a beginner? (On staining especially, the color never turns out dark enough)
PraeclarusWands Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Hi there! I'm really happy you like my wands! ^_^
I'd love to see some of the work you've done. (Going to post any soon? :eager:) I'm the opposite -- I've used dowels, but not branches, so I quite enjoy seeing wands made from branches. for tips, the main thing that's helped me for carving is to always be aware of the direction the grain of the wood is going. If you cut into the wood from the wrong angle, you can tear the fibers and leave a big gaping hole/gash in your wand. If you feel it start to tear, flip the wood around and whittle the other way. And always keep your knife sharp!

For staining, I like to use mineral stains since I've noticed the wood absorbs them better than water-based stains. What kind are you using right now? (I personally use Minwax brand, if that helps at all.) When I first started out and didn't have much money for materials, I bought a few water-based stain pens. They really didn't produce as dark a color as I wanted, so I ended up augmenting the stain with a brown marker. That sort of thing works for a while, but then you get tired of the same old colors...then you can mix stains. If a dark stain still isn't going on dark enough, you can try applying one coat and letting it soak really well into the wood before wiping off the excess. The thing to remember with that technique is to never waterlog your wood. (If it gets too soggy, it may not dry completely.) If that still doesn't work, you can try mixing a brown stain with some black stain. That affects the color, though, so it's not always a viable option.

Something that I've found to be helpful is (for mineral stains) to buy the canned version (kind of expensive, so use a coupon) and don't shake or otherwise mix the pigments. Use a popsicle stick or something like that and scrape the bottom of the can for the high-pigment-concentration stain. If the pigments weren't mixed well enough, you'll get this gooey stuff that you can apply to your wand using a paintbrush or rag. I've used that trick to get the really dark black ebony colors. You can mix the goo from the bottom of the can with stain from the top of the can to get a consistency that produces the exact level of opacity you want.

If all else fails, you could try gel stain. I've personally never used it, so I can't give you any firsthand tips, but from what I've read, it's more like pain than stain since it sits on top of the wood rather than being absorbed into it. But if nothing else is getting a dark enough color, gel stain might work well.

For small spots where you need a dark stain, brush markers (like Copic markers) in blacks and browns can do the trick.

I hope that helps a bit! If there's anything else I can help with, just ask.
SoulFood1 Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Hey thanks for the advice! I just submitted a couple of my old wands and I also submitted a new one that I used a dowel to make. Now that some of my friends are seeing the wands I made some of them are are going to pay me to make them a wand. Now that I have commissions I am going to need to make boxes to go with them but the tutorials I've seen for wand boxes don't really look....How should I say?......GOOD! The boxes that you make look very professional and classy so could you tell me what you use to make it and how? Well,if you don't want to give away your secret of making the box that's fine, I could just figure it out through trial and error I guess.
PraeclarusWands Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
You're very welcome! A box tutorial is actually one of the things on my summer to-do list, so be on the lookout for that later this month. But basically, I take some rawboard, like the stuff they use for cereal boxes, and cut and tape that into two halves of a box, with the lid slightly larger than the bottom half. The exact size was a bit trial and error for me, but if you add 2 mm to the length and 2 mm to the width of the dimensions of the bottom half, it should be all right. After I've got the box shell, I carefully cover it with craft paper. That's also a bit trial and error, and it explains better with pictures so I won't try to detail the steps here. (Sorry.) Once that's done, I make the wand bed with corrugated cardboard, fabric, tape, and ribbon (I -do- have a tutorial for that part up already) and insert it into the paper-covered box. That's basically it! I like to stick some wandbox labels on the top and on the sides.

I hope that helped! Also, sorry for the late reply, I'm on holiday with my family and the wifi's not too great...
ianCasarim Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2013

damn, your work it's unbelievable. Thank you very much
PraeclarusWands Featured By Owner Apr 6, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
Phoenix cores are cool~~
It's me who should be thanking you, really. So! Thank you so much!
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