Vintage Inspired Wood Ornaments

My favorite gifts to give are always handmade, but especially ornaments. I used vintage 1950s glass ornaments as inspiration for my wood ornaments. Walnut Hollow has several thin plaques that are great for lightweight oversized ornaments. I used several Marrakesh Thin … Continue reading

Made in America

By Chris Wallace for Walnut Hollow

40283 Rustic Pallet_Made in America

Since today is July 4th and we are celebrating Independence Day, I thought it would be appropriate to share something important to Walnut Hollow. If you never know anything else about Walnut Hollow but one thing, I hope you know that all of our wood products are Made in America. And that is something the Ladd Family and all the Walnut Hollow employees are very proud of.


Walnut Hollow was founded 42 years ago by Dave Ladd. When Dave saw his wife Nancy decoupage crosscut pieces of wood, it sparked an idea that became a well-respected, international corporation. We manufacturer various styles of wood products sold throughout the United States, Canada and foreign countries.


All Walnut Hollow wood products are made in the heartland of America. Our factory in Dodgeville, Wisconsin employs local folks and most of them have been part of our company for many years. Our hard-working employees take exceptional pride in their work to bring the best and innovative products to market for our valued customers.


These are photos of our factory where the wood products are manufactured.


We also take pride in safety. This is a photo of our President, Sandra Ladd-Bartelt, Dave’s daughter, thanking all Walnut Hollow employees. The 2013 Outstanding Manufacturing Safety Performance Award was presented to Walnut Hollow by Acuity Insurance. It is a great honor to be recognized for working safely.

WHLogo_PMS202We take great pride in producing products that are not only environmentally friendly but are also highly adaptable to many different markets. Our commitment to quality products and our environmental initiative are beyond compare. We help to keep America strong and employed. Always remember, Walnut Hollow wood products are Made in America.

Happy 4th of July!

Modern Plaque Chalkboard Hanger

Final ChalkboardImage




I designed this Modern Plaque Chalkboard project for Walnut Hollow’s Make-and-Take at CHA back in January. It was a big hit! I will share pictures from our booth at the end of the post. This project was really easy to make. I started by sanding the Thin Modern Plaque and spray painting it with Krylon Spray Paint. I used Ballet Slipper on half of the plaques and Catalina Mist on the other half.

I conditioned chalkboard paper with the regular chalk and wiped off the excess with a paper towel. Then I cut the paper to fit onto the modern plaque (about 3″ x 5″) in the center of the plaque. I glued it down using a Tombow Stamp Runner.


I added the trim around the chalkboard- cutting it down using the edges of the chalkboard as a guide for the length needed. I glued down the trim using Beacon Gem-Tac Adhesive. It will dry clear!


Once the Chalkboard Paper and Trim were in Place I was ready to add the floral and button embellishments! I used Tombow Power Adhesive Tabs to attach the Prima flowers and the Buttons Galore and More buttons to opposite corners of the chalkboard.



To write my message on the chalkboard, I first drew it out with some white chalk. It comes off easier than the Chalk ink because it does not need water. Then I traced over the design with the chalk ink pen.



Finally I added a screw hook. The basswood is soft- you can just push the screw into the wood then turn. It will go in easily.

Here are some finished pieces from our CHA booth!


Last week we went to Madison Mingle in Madison, Wisconsin to show the participants how to make the same project! It was really fun to work with card makers- and we got to make some cards too!



Now go forth and make your chalkboard!








For My “Friend”

Thin Modern Plaque Sign

One of the most important concepts in our lives revolves around this word – “Friend”. Everyone wants to have a friend or to be a friend.  I would have a hard time believing that anyone didn’t care to have or to be a friend. Sometimes you get really lucky and you have more than one!

Artists, crafters and people looking for a new hobby have more recently become interested again in wood burning or pyrography. However, everyone cannot draw, so we like to recommend stencils or rubber stamps for design ideas for wood burning. I saw this beautiful rubber stamp made by Hero Arts – it’s one of their cling stamps – and thought it would be perfect for wood burning a present for a “Friend”.



This time I used the Hot Marks Tool ( It heats to 750° which is hot enough to burn wood, leather and/or paper. I used a Monogram Thin Plaque for the project (

stamp image

When planning to wood burn a stamped design, you’ll need to use a light colored stamping ink on raw wood. You’ll want to be able to see the image, but it should not be too dark. Do not apply anything (like wood sealer or acrylic paint) to the wood prior to stamping the image. You’ll cover most of the lines with the wood burning, but some might show. Some inks run or bleed on raw wood – but Staz-On does not. I used Mustard to stamp this image.

Make sure you read all the manufacturer’s instructions found inside the Hot Marks packaging. Use pliers to secure the Mini Flow Point onto the Tool. Secure the Tool Stand to your work surface with tape and place the Tool on the Stand. Plug into an electric outlet, turn switch “ON” and heat for 4-5 minutes.


With the Mini Flow Point attached, you simply hold the Tool like a writing pen and burn the lines on the image.

Remember to hold the Tool, not too tightly, and let the heat of the Tool do the work. The longer the Point is on the surface, the deeper the burn on the wood. Practice by writing your name or doodling some lines on the back of your project or on a scrap of wood before working on your actual project. Practice a little and each time you wood burn it just gets easier and easier.  If there are stamped lines that are very small, you do not need to wood burn every bit of that image, just the lines that create most of the image are just fine. You will be adding color to the wood burning also, so you won’t see any stamped lines that are not wood burned anyway.

remove pointflower stamp

Once you have completed wood burning the stamped image, use the pliers to remove the Mini Flow Point and attach the Flower Stamp to the hot tool. 

hot stamping

Holding the Tool perpendicular to the wood surface, hot stamp the Flower image around the border of the Plaque. After all the Flowers are stamped, press the switch to “OFF” and place the Tool on the Stand to cool.


I used Tombow® Dual Brush Pens ( ) to add color to the wood burned design. I used the fine tip end of the Pens.

For a projective finish, spray the finished wood piece with 2-3 coats of varnish. Let this dry before wrapping baker’s twine around the edges to hang the Plaque on the wall.

Present your masterpiece to your “Friend” – he or she will love it simply because you made it just for them!