Monday, October 24, 2011

Reindeer Plaque

The plan this year for my holiday decorating is to scale things down and simplify AND I am hoping to make most of my decorations using what nature has to offer.  (this is the plan, however, things could change!)  I've been gathering pinecones, twigs, logs, etc. and am hoping to turn them into rustic, yet beautiful Christmas decor.  Hmmm...we'll see.

My first project that I'd like to share with you is my reindeer plaque.  (I saw this in an old Canadian Living Christmas Idea magazine from 1986.)

  Here's what you'll need to make your own:

1 - log approximately 3" in diameter and approximately 6" long
2 - 5/8" dowel pieces cut 2 3/4" long (for ears)
2 - 3/8" wooden plugs (for eyes)
2 - branches/twigs for antlers
Scrap piece of pine 9 1/2" x 10"
Drill bits, wood screws, wood glue, drill
Self-leveling hanger (for back)

1.  Cut the log at an angle approximately 1" from the end.  Now, turn the long end of the log (the head) around 180 degrees so that it is at an angle to the shorter piece (the neck).   Secure using wood glue and wood screws.

2.  For the plaque, at the bottom of the pine find and mark the center.  Measure from the bottom 3 1/2" up each side and mark.  From these points, draw your angles and cut off.  (I used my scroll saw.)  Sand using 100-grit and then 220-grit sandpaper.

3.  Attach the reindeer's head/neck onto the plaque just below the center using wood glue and wood screws. 

4.  Drill 5/8" holes in the side of the head for the ears and secure the dowel with wood glue.

5.  Drill 3/8" holes in the top of the head for the eyes.  Use wood glue to secure the wooden plugs.

6.  Drill holes at the top of the head for the antlers and secure the twigs with wood glue.

7.  Attach the self-leveling hanger to the back of the plaque, for hanging.

You can leave it as is or finish it any way you desire.  I stained the plaque, reindeer's head, neck and ears with a dark walnut stain.  And, for the pictures, I added a burlap bow and some berries to the antlers, however, I think rusty bells would look cute tied around his neck. 

I hope you enjoyed this project and, thank you, for stopping by for a visit.  Have a great day.



  1. OMG!!! I absolutely love this little guy and HAVE to make one for myself. Thanks for sharing. Be sure to check out my blog!!

  2. I love this guy! I WANT husband would love this! Thank you-I'm saving this one!

  3. This reindeer is so cute! I love bringing nature indoors and you did a fantastic job. If you have a second I'd love for you to share this with my readers:

    - Trish @ Mom On Timeout

  4. Oh my! SO cute!! I'd love to feature this next week! :)

  5. This is so cute! I want to make one - the only thing missing is a red nose!

  6. Wow -- this guy is so cute!


  7. Ahhh....too cute!!

  8. So stinking CUTE!!! Pinning this! :-)

  9. That is way cute! I love working with natural elements too! Great project!

  10. that is such a good idea, and so stinking cute, too. i like it much better than some of the other plaques i've seen.

  11. ha ! Gotta love it. That turned out amazing!!

  12. That's SO cute!! Thank you so much for linking this up to {nifty thrifty sunday} last week! I featured you at this week's party! :)
    Vanessa @ {nifty thrifty things}

  13. I love this I am going to have to try to make this cute deer when I get back to normal here..Great Job!!

  14. HA! That is so cute! I love it, it's so unique and creative. Great job!

  15. love your reindeer... thanks for showing

  16. So gosh darned cute! My boys would love one of these in the house. Thanks for sharing at Taking A Timeout Thursday! Hope to see you again this week!
    -Trish @ Mom On Timeout

  17. Oh My...this lil guy is too stinkin cute! I will definitely be making some of these!

  18. He is cute, cute, cute! Please tell me what a self leveling hanger is and where do you get one?
    Thank you.

  19. What a great idea. He or she is very cute! Cheers!