Reblog: Dremel Moto-Saw: Handmade Signage

The fabulous folks at Dremel sent me their latest cool tool to try out for review- the Dremel Moto Saw. This tool converts from a stationary scroll saw to a handheld portable coping saw with the touch of a button. It’s just right for someone like me who doesn’t have room or patience to handle larger and more complicated tools. The only assembly I had to do was to drop the coping saw down into the base and attach the base to a work surface with clamps (included.) Although I could have completed my first project by using the hand-held function, I thought I should start slow and work with both hands and the tabletop set-up. The blades go in and out quite easily for changing out, (also included,) due to an auto-tensioning QuickChange™ mechanism that allows you to quickly switch blades without a wrench, while also keeping the blade taught, reducing the need to make blade adjustments. This saw cuts through a variety of materials: wood, laminate, plastic and thin metal.

The inspiration for my first project came from this little bit of vintage signage (below) that I found at an antique shop a few years back: DELIVERED FRESH DAILY that likely went with another sign such as FRESH EGGS or BAKED GOODS. This vintage wording begged for accompanying text, and now that I had my new Moto-Saw tool, I was ready to create it. However, for a first timer, this project was a bit ambitious. And if I had to do it over again, I would have chosen solid pine wood, rather than the craft plywood I had on hand, (better left for small construction projects,) as it was a very hard wood and a bit tough to work with.

To begin, I typed out my lettering to size (4 ½-inches high) on my computer, in outlined text to save on ink, and moved it about a letter-size layout to print every letter. I created a flat edge for every round bottom letter in order for them to ultimately stand on their own without falling over.

Once all letters were printed and roughly trimmed out, lightly I coated the backs of each with spray adhesive and placed letters about the wood, aligning the bottoms of every letter along an existing straight edge of the wood board. I wasn’t confident enough to think I could cut good straight lines the first time out the gate, so this worked well. And it paid off, because as I mentioned, working with this hard wood was indeed challenging.The Moto-Saw comes with a vacuum attachment for collecting dust as you cut. However, I chose to work outside rather than in my studio. This ornate typeface was a bit trickier to work with than if it were a simple sans serif font. There were a few points where I painted myself into a corner and needed to carefully back my blade out. I learned to cut from smaller sections of wood rather than try to fit a large piece in as ultimately you can run into the back metal arm. For tight areas and letter cut-outs, I first drilled a hole to allow for removing and replacing the blade. After all letters were cut, I used my cordless Dremel Rotary Tool to lightly sand and soften the edges.I painted the surface of letters a very thin coat of white and positioned them on top of a piece of baseboard trim.The letters stood fine on their own with their flat bottoms, but I used a bit of hot glue at the back base of each to keep them from toppling from any Northern California tremor, or the occasional slamming of a door. This will work great should I ever decide to trick the letters out at a later time with decorative paper or paint, or choose to hang them individually on a wall, they can be very easily removed from the baseboard.For now, they sit atop my giant studio apothecary cabinet! (Sorry, bigger studio reveal under wraps for a while!)I’m pretty pleased with my first go at crafting with this great little tool.You can purchase the Dremel Moto-Saw Variable Speed Compact Scroll Saw Kit on for only $99! Here are some Moto-Saw craft ideas from Dremel.

My next Dremel Moto-Saw project: Tabletop wooden people-photo cut-outs!

What would you make?

from Just Something I Made
Reblog: Organizing: Vintage Tins Turned Refrigerator Magnets

I always look forward to Spring and the promise of warm-weather outdoor flea markets. After what feels like a long winter, I can hardly wait to get out on a blacktop covered in tables stacked with vintage finds. For a new twist on organizing with some of those flea market goods, check out my latest blog post over at SC Johnson Family Economics!

Disclosure: I am a paid blogger for SC Johnson.

from Just Something I Made
Reblog: Vintage Framework Labels: Free Printables

I’ve teamed up with the fabulous again to bring you these all purpose label designs for use on everything from food packaging and file organizing to gift labeling and wedding favors. You can even fold printed labels in half over skewers to make unique cupcake topper flags! The files are editable so you can add your own text inside the framework.The ornate designs originate from chapter title framework found in a 1882 book on Business and Social Forms and were modified into label borders. I designed the label printables in black, red and turquoise in two styles of each, but if you’re a little savvy in the image editing department you can modify the colors to suit any project!

Download the free files, add your own text to each label and to print to’s 4″ x 1.5″ label sheets. You can access these and many, many other free customizable PDF downloads over on the blog. If you download them, please leave a nice comment for the wonderful folks at, thank you.

from Just Something I Made