Woodworking Project For Beginners: Mixed Media Bird Video Tutorial

12 Materials
4 Hours

This post is in collaboration with Hometalk and Worx, for the MakerX tool. All of the opinions are my own.

Woodworking projects for beginners are a great way to get creative! This project is a mixed media bird with a video tutorial to show you exactly how to make it!

I used the MakerX tool from Worx to make this project. With the different attachments (airbrush, rotary tool, heat gun, woodburning tool and angle grinder), it’s an amazing tool for any craft room or DIYer!

Full video tutorial at the end!!!

I used the MakerX tool from Worx to make this project. With the different attachments (airbrush, rotary tool, heat gun, woodburning tool and angle grinder), it’s an amazing tool for any craft room or DIYer!

Step 1: Draw the bird

Draw a basic bird shape. Add a beak and plume for some interest. You can use posterboard for a sturdier template, but a regular sheet of paper will do. Cut it out with scissors and make the plume separate.

Step 2: Find your wood

If you have scrap wood available, this is a great opportunity to use it! You can use any wood you like. The wood for the bird should be wider than the plume. That way it looks like the plume is actually coming out of the head.

Once you have your wood, trace the bird onto the wood. Make your markings bold, so you can follow them!

Step 3: Cut it out!

Use a saw to cut out the shapes. I used the Worx Bladerunner saw and it worked like a charm!

Step 4: Sand it

This is where the MakerX comes in handy! Using the MakerX rotary tool attachment sand and round the edges. It makes quick work of the task!

Step 5: Notch for the plume

Figure out where you want the plume to be positioned on the bird’s head. Trace the base of the plume to that spot. Use the rotary tool and cut off wheel to make the notch. Once finished, the plume should fit into it snuggly.

Step 6: Mark the eye

Use a marker to mark where you want the eye to be located. Use the rotary tool with the ball grinder bit and hollow out an indent for the eye.

Step 7: Airbrush

Use the MakerX airbrush attachment. If you want the colors to be bolder and brighter, do a coat of white first. If you don’t mind the color of the wood muting the colors, go ahead and skip the white and paint your colors.

Do any color combination that makes you happy! Paint all of the pieces - front, back, and sides.

If indoors, you don’t necessarily need a protective varnish.

Step 8: Woodburning

With the woodburning MakerX attachment, add a little detail where the beak meets the bird. Just a little something to add interest.

Step 9: Cut up a pop can

Carefully cut open an empty and clean pop can. Cut the ends off. Then, cut down a side, so you can open it and flatten it like a piece of paper.

You can freehand a wing or draw a template and cut it out, with scissors.

Step 10: Emboss it

Work on a piece of paper and apply embossing ink to the wing and pour embossing powder over it. Tap the excess embossing powder off the wing, onto the paper, and return it to the jar. Use the heat gun attachment for the MakerX to heat up the embossing powder. Once heated it will liquify and will stick to the wing.

Once it cools, you can add other layers and other colors if you want. Dab (don’t rub) additional layers of embossing ink and powder onto the wing and heat up again.

Step 11: Add the wings

(Note: If you are doing a bird that will hang on the wall, you can do only one side. If you want to do a standing bird sculpture, like this one, you will want to do both sides.)

Drill a hole in the wing, where you would like to have the wing attached. Determine the placement of the wing on the bird and match up the hole and drill.

Use a small screw to attach the wings.

Step 13: Time for the eyes

If your eyeballs have stems, trim them short enough to fit into the eye indent you made earlier.

*I was originally planning to paint the eye and fill it with a liquid that hardened. The liquid came out more yellow and I did not like the look. I think the plastic eyes have a nicer look...so happy accident!

Having indents is a great way to have the eye be flush with the side of the bird and still have the added strength of the glue and stem - even if you had to trim the eye stem a little shorter.

Step 14: Something to stand on

Cut a base out of scrap wood. If you got it, use it! You could buy a wood plaque from the craft store, if you would rather.

Cut out the feet from the pop can scraps leftover from the wings. Emboss them, drill a hole at the heel and glue them into place.

Drill a hole into the base where the heel holes are. Depending on how you want your legs to be or where you want to attach them to your bird, you may want to drill at a slight angle.

Step 15: Legs!

Use dowel rods and cut to the desired length. Yes! You can do that with the MakerX rotary tool and cut off wheel!

Drill holes into the bottoms of the dowel rods, at both ends. Insert short pieces of bamboo skewer sticks into the holes you just drilled. The bamboo pieces add support. They will be inserted into the dowel and the base and into the dowel and the underside of the bird. With some glue, they should be nice and secure.

Make sure you have the bamboo skewer pieces in the ends of the dowels. Add glue and insert them into the base.

Step 16: Drill more holes

Now that you have the legs positioned, drill holes in the underside of the bird, where you want the legs attached. Again, add the bamboo skewers and glue.If for some reason, the legs are not staying in place and are twisting, you probably didn’t use enough glue or didn’t wait long enough for them to dry. Not to worry!

Use your small drill bit and pre-drill a hole into the back of the leg, near the base, and into the base at an angle. Use a small screw and drive it into the hole, so it holds the base and dowel in place.

Step 17: Details

At this point you can stop, but I didn’t. You decide when yours is done. I really wanted to glam mine up!

If you have any screws showing that you want covered, do it now. Cover them with half pearls or a dab of glue and some glitter.

I added white feathers to soften it. I added them around the base of the plume, the underside by the legs and around the ankles. Those are the main places where you might have glue or imperfections you might want to hide. The feathers are PERFECT for that! Another great way to camouflage imperfections is glue and glitter! Of course that’s just a fun accent and detail too!

Finally, while searching my craft supplies, I found fake eyelashes. I cut them to size and glued them right onto the bird! That was a definite glam detail!The MakerX was a complete asset in making the bird! She’s fun and funky! The only attachment I did not use was the angle grinder, but I know I’ll use it in the future!

Where I Found My Supplies

I had everything on hand to make this bird, except the airbrush paint.

You probably have a lot of it on hand too!

I found scrap pieces of wood in the garage. If you are getting rid of any furniture (table, cabinet, shelf, etc.) use the wood. It's perfect to repurpose it for this project!

Tip: If you (or anyone you know) ever have a tree taken down, always save some slabs for crafting!

If you have some old costume jewelry that you don’t wear anymore, dissect it and use the pieces to decorate. Don’t use the family jewels! Also, garage sales are a good source for cheap costume jewelry!

Scrounge through the recycling bin for empty pop cans.

You can make eyelashes out of wire, some trim, or even yarn!

Shockingly, the embossing powder and ink I have has to be at least 15 years old and it still works and the embossing ink didn’t dry out! You don't need to use embossing powder, you can paint the cans, or do glue and glitter or scratch it up to give it texture. Use what you have!

Reuse what you have at your house and if you can’t find something go snoop around your mom, your sister or your best friend’s house! Just don’t tell them I told you to do it!

The good news is you can always buy items to fill in what you don’t have, but get creative!Thanks for stopping by!

Remember: Life’s too short not to shimmer, so grab your glue gun and your glitter!™ Stay safe!

Be sure to stop by my Craft Klatch blog for more fun projects!


Check out the video tutorial! See all the steps and the MakerX in action!

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Mona  ~ Craft Klatch
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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