June 23, 2010

Garden Markers from Hammered Spoons


I’ve been on the hunt for garden markers that  1) are customizable  2) will last more than one season and  3) are cheap, just in case they don’t last more than one season.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find anything that met all three criteria, or really even two for that matter.  So, I figured I could make some similar to ones that I have seen in various shops. 

You will need something like this:


I bought this set at Harbor Freight (I love Harbor Freight!) for $5 on sale. If you don’t live by a Harbor Freight you should probably move, but if that’s not an option you can get metal letter stamps online here.  I also got a small sledge hammer at Harbor Freight that you can see in the pictures below.

You will need some old spoons.   Look for ones on the thin side that have a little flex to them.  You can test them out by trying to bend the handle a bit.  I bought mine at Goodwill for $0.29 each. 

Note: I found that stainless steel spoons were very difficult to use.  Also, the Oneida brand spoons were practically indestructible and therefore VERY hard to flatten.   

Place a spoon face down on a hard surface.  Concrete with an old T-shirt in between worked the best.  Start pounding the spoon.  Turn the spoon over and pound some more.  Keep going until the spoon is completely flat.  You may need to hit the spoon handle a few times to straighten it out as well.

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Next, choose the letters you want to stamp onto the spoon.  Start with the letter in the middle of your word.  Hold the stamp against the spoon with your first two fingers and your thumb.  Press the sides of your fingers against the spoon to help brace them and keep the stamp still.  Start with a few short taps with the hammer and gradually hit harder.  It will take about 15 hard strikes to make a clear indentation.  Repeat with the rest of the letters.



If you want you can fill the letters in with black permanent marker so they show up better.  You can also use forks or butter knives.

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