Shortly after Christmas, I was cleaning out a closet and came across a box from a project I had done in college. It came from a craft store, and would probably be labeled as a cigar box. It's a little better than eight inches square, and not quite two inches deep. I thought it would be just right for Bert's box. My box has my initials carved in the top, and I thought Bert's should too. But I wasn't sure if the wood would hold up to carving, so I had to come up with another plan. Keith was the one who solved the problem when he suggested wood burning. He was a little hesitant to tackle the project freehand, and left it up to me to sketch what I wanted burned into the wood. Well, I didn't want to go in freehand either, so I channelled that $40k graphic design degree to make up a design.
In Illustrator, I made up a sort of "crest," if you will. (And if you didn't already know, Bert is just a nickname. We aren't that mean. That's why his initials aren't BRE.)
Then I flipped it to be a mirror image, and printed it out.
Here's the part where I start winging it. I thought I could just center it up on the box and rub the ink off, giving Keith an outline of where to burn. Using a tool called a bone folder (but anything with a hard, smooth edge should work), I transferred the printed image to the box.
And wouldn't you know, it actually worked. It was a little faint, but enough for Keith to do his part.
In hindsight, I wouldn't have made the design quite as intricate. Or maybe we could have found something with a finer tip for burning into the wood. But it worked out alright.
After the design was burnt in, I put a couple coats of finish on, and it was done.
It's not perfect, it's not huge, but sometimes when you're a kid, you can fit your whole world in a special box.