DIY Faux Hand Carved Wood Bowl

Cindi McGee
by Cindi McGee
Get the look of a rustic, hand-carved wood bowl for a seasonal tabletop display with Smoothfoam™ and DecoArt® Chalky Finish paint. DIY tutorial included.

Smoothfoam(TM) half-ball (

Hot wire tool or craft knife

DecoArt(R) Americana Decor(TM) Chalky Finish Paint - Heritage ( DecoArt(R) Americana Decor(TM) Creme Wax - Deep Brown


Paper towels


If using a hot wire tool to cut the Smoothfoam, be sure you are in a well-ventilated area.

Place the half-ball upside down and carve away a bit of the base to make it flat so it will sit well on table as a bowl. I purposely cut it irregularly, as I was trying to recreate a carved wood effect.

Flip the bowl over, then remove larger random chunks and slices from around the edge of bowl to give it a hand-carved look. Use different tools or styluses to add dents, grooves, and other marks all over the surface.
Paint the bowl with Heritage Chalky Finish paint and let dry. Apply the Creme Wax with a paper towel, removing immediately after applying, to just tint the paint and darken the carved areas.
Fill with fruit, acorns, pinecones or other autumn elements for a rustic tabletop display. Replace the contents with glittered pine cones & holiday ball ornaments for a Christmas display.
Smoothfoam(TM) half balls come in a variety of sizes and fit together to form a full ball when desired.
Cindi McGee
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  2 questions
  • Laura Laura on Nov 23, 2015
    do you slice off a flat piece on the bottom to keep it from rolling around and being unstable?

  • Peggy Hanson Higgins Peggy Hanson Higgins on Nov 23, 2015
    Cindi, love your project but where can I find the smoothform?

Join the conversation
2 of 18 comments
  • Chris Keating-Ingelse Chris Keating-Ingelse on Jul 30, 2017
    This is an awesome idea, Cindi! I just hate it when I end up stealing everyone else's ideas- wish I was clever enough to come up with my own!

  • Cindi McGee Cindi McGee on Jul 30, 2017
    It's not stealing! It's finding inspiration! Go for it! This is still one of my favorite pieces. Did another one with clay accents for someone and that one came out well too! Would love to see yours :)