Our products are proudly manufactured in our own UK workshop. We don't use fancy packaging or branding, you just pay for the products and we hope you'll enjoy using them. Here's more about what we use with some hints and tips:
MDF WOOD (2mm and 3mm) shapes and embellishments need little or no further enhancement if you like the vintage look. Use inks and crackle glazes to enhance this further without altering the base colour. They are also ideal for gilding, staining and painting. Larger pieces can also be stamped, collaged, crackled and more - see how it's done over at the Design Team Blog!
PLEASE NOTE: Laser cutting will leave some sooty residue on the back of MDF pieces although we take steps to minimise this as much as possible - it can be more pronounced the smaller/more intricate the design. This is not a defect and will not affect the end use of the product as it's on the back.
Intricate designs in smaller sizes and some of the mini shapes will be much darker than other products, particularly when using 2mm MDF. This is due to the laser process that cuts the substrate by precision burning and there is nothing we can do about this. The edges of laser cut items will also always be darker for the same reason. It is only by laser cutting (rather than stamping or routing) that intricate designs can be made.
If you like the designs or prefer the smaller sizes but don't like the dark finish, you can lift it with colour washing, dry brushing or using diluted gesso to make the design pop. See some project ideas on the blog!
BIRCH PLYWOOD (3mm) has a naturally light coloured birch wood top and bottom layer which is suitable for staining, painting, waxing or burning with a pyrography tool. All birch plywood plaques come ready sanded for your convenience - plaques over 100mm are also fine sanded. Depending on availability, we may from time to time (but rarely) need to substitute with light birch plywood or poplar plywood - this does not significantly affect the appearance of the product and has no effect on its end use.
HOT OFF THE PRESS!! As our products are freshly cut to order and packed soon thereafter, you may sometimes notice a smell that is caused by the intense heat of the laser beam burning through the substrate. All substrates contains glues or binding agents in their manufacture (particularly MDF) and the intense heat of the laser beam can create this aroma. It won't be very noticeable (if at all) on larger products such as plaques/mixed media boards etc but may be more noticeable on fiddly and/or engraved designs where the laser cutting is more concentrated.
Some people are more sensitive to the smell than others, some people say it smells a bit fishy or of burnt wood, some people enjoy the smell, some don't notice anything at all and some people dislike it. The best we can do is advise you prior to purchase that this may occur so you can make an informed choice - as this is part of the manufacturing process, it is not considered a defect in the products. Once your order is unpacked and aired for a bit, any lingering odour should fade - if you prefer, you can also seal items with a clear sealer, such as Mod Podge, before use.
WE RECOMMEND: Use a good quality wood or PVA glue when using our products for best results - apply a thin coating across the back of the piece, allow to dry for a few minutes, then stick down pressing evenly. We highly recommend DecoArt paints, mediums, glues and finishes for tried and tested results with our products.