A Readers Question..................
Anca writes: My husband played with what he calls "stump art" by debarking them, then using sandpaper and dremmel for a smooth effect, and lastly, engraving someone's name or initials on it. He does not have a lot of patience, so I jumped in, did some more dremmel and sand paper work, went over the letters one more time and sprayed with polyurethane at the end.What we were aiming at, was the "finished" look you obtained, but we did not come even close. Any tips? Why did it take us so long, and doesn't it take A LOT of spray?Loved your ideas and thanks for your comments.
Anca: Thanks for writing. I know exactly what you are talking about. I tried spraying the tree stump with polyurethane several times. Part of the stump stayed shiny and other parts seemed to be absorbed by the treek, leaving it dull. I never really had that finished look. I purchased a product called Mod Podge. It's used for decoupaging. I purchased it in a local craft store. I know Walmart also carries it. It comes in a glossy or matte finish. For the one pictured I chose glossy. I brushed in on (it goes on white like Elmers glue) but dries very quickly. It really gives it a finished look. You could also try the matte finish, which would probably give you a very natural look. I paid about $5.00 plus for an 8 oz bottle. Not bad when you consider the price of polyurethane these days and I only used one coat. I have inserted a link for you so you can check out this product. It has many uses. http://www.plaidonline.com/apMP.asp
Thanks again for writing. If you get a chance, send me a photo of the finished tree and I'll post it on this site. Good luck and I hope this helps.