Driftwood is smoothed over time by the water which creates unique shapes and designs. Some of the designs range from mesmerizing swirls and whorls to smooth ripples, all created by water. The best driftwood is found upriver in coves where the water eddies. With the water at winter levels and the cold temperatures keeping critters away, it is a great time to get outdoors and collect some driftwood!
The uses are endless! You can use them inside as wall art, centerpiece for your table or in glass vase or jars. Create something unique for your lake home. You can also drill cavities into the driftwood to make holders for tea lights or votives. Make sure you use caution when using candles with driftwood - it can be a fire hazard!
Before you use your driftwood as inside decor..clean it properly! You’ll need a few tools for cleaning and working with driftwood:
Here are the steps to cleaning driftwood:
You are now ready to create your work of art! The natural beauty of the wood is revealed when you remove the soft wood by scrapping it gently with a scrapper, sandpaper or Dremel tool. If you lightly spray the wood with water, it will help remove the soft wood. You will know it’s removed when you see more of the grain and the wood gets hard…don’t scrap against the grain!
You can preserve your artwork using any method that is commonly used for wood, from oiling to waxing. If you decide to use oil, it is best to apply multiple coats of wood oil, added over time. Use appropriate sized brushes to reach all those small nooks and crannies! Just remember that the color of the oil make change the appearance of the wood. If you buff the wood between coats, you will achieve a beautiful finish!
So, before the lake begins to fill for the summer, walk the shoreline for unique pieces of driftwood and create your work of art!
Send us a photo of your favorite driftwood art/decor at FanMail@LakeWedoweeLife.com. We will select a few for our Home on the Lake issue of Lake Wedowee Life magazine.
The pieces below are soaking in the bleach solution...check back later for the progress!