Being summer time we wanted some extra enchantment for the girls. And we decided to share it with the community. So I made a wooden outdoor Fairy Door. And I’m going to share my learning curve with you.
I decided to enter a craft challenge using knobs and hinges by Fireflies & Jellybeans.
My inspiration was an old stump at a local park. Nearly every time we go the girls clean out the little nook and line it with twigs, feathers, berries, etc. Offerings for their fairy friends.
So we made a rough outline of the stump’s nook’s opening and traced it onto a piece of pine board.
I wanted a door that would open, so inside of the original outline I drew a door with a rounded top.
Then I did something really brave. I pulled out a scroll saw and without any male assistance what-so-ever I used it to cut out my little fairy door. I know a jigsaw would work just as well.
Here’s my learning curve. Use a thicker blade. The blade on the scroll saw was very thin and didn’t allow enough room for the inner door to open. So I had to go around the inside door and shave a little bit more off the shape.
Then I sanded down all sides of the door.
Then, Wowser, I picked up a tool I’ve never before used. A Dremel. I used it to carve little wooden slats in the front of my fairy door. I would sometimes bounce off of the line I was supposed to be following. Oh well, it just gave the door more character.
Then I pulled out a tool for which I feel a lot more comfortable. My wood-burner tool – it’s my friend. And I added some twirly vines, pixie dust and this charming quote from Albert Einstein,
‘Imagination is more important than Knowledge.’
Knowing this door is intended for outside use. I used a couple of different colors to stain it with. A red stain for the door.
Here’s a different use for some of your scrapbook markers. What I like about using them is I could color in details, and they are acid free and don’t fade. Afterwards I lightly wiped a light oak color stain over the outer frame of my fairy door. Once the stain was dry, I also added a couple of coats of an outdoor sealer.
Then I added the hinges and knobs. I think I had to go to 5 different stores to find something suitable. I decided to use a rose push pin as a wreath hanger for the door.
Here’s another learning curve. Pre-mark and drill the holes for your hinges, it will go a lot faster. Here’s something else I learned. You may not want to attach your door until after you have installed it in it’s new home. Why? Because the door may get in the way of you attaching it to whatever it is you are attaching it too.
I think it turned out quite nice for my first outdoor Fairy Door. See even my dremel slip-up look like they are supposed to be there, like the door has been aged a bit.
Once completed we snuck back to our secret stump at one of our favorite playgrounds.
Here’s another hint. Pre-drill your frame where your supporting screws will be attaching it to the stump. Make sure you are going from a front inside frame edge to a back outside edge (angled) slant. Because chances are you don’t have a screwdriver tiny enough to fit in between the frame. (See how a pre-attached door can get in the way) Also counter sink those angled screws so they don’t stop the door from closing. Believe me, you will probably want to take a small chargeable drill. I won’t tell you how long it took me to screw the door into the stump. Stupid Striped screws.
After working on it for a couple of hours I even ended up having my husband come and help. Thanks Prince Erik for your help. I can handle power tools great but a plain old screwdriver was giving me fits.
Once it was screwed to the stump I used a bit of some heavy duty outdoor glue to glue twigs and moss between the frame and stump to hide the screws. Now it almost looks as if the little people put it there.
Hey, but now there’s a little magic at the community park.
And it opens so little hands and hearts can grow their own imagination.
Of course, I hope it lasts. I hope some troll doesn’t destroy our little gift. It was quite fun to make and I’m sure we will make many more. I think some little matching windows are now calling me.
I created this first and foremost to keep my heart young and full of imagination. But I also made the Outdoor Fairy Door as a Iron Crafter Challenge from Fireflies & Jellybeans. The secret ingredient that we had to use was Knobs and Hinges. While I didn’t re-write the book on how basic knobs and hinges are used. I think presenting them in miniature form can open up a whole new world of imagination.