I recently scored a free box of wood scraps and in it was this fabulous old cedar block.  I decided to paint it and turn it into a “city block”.  I think it might be a good block for the Vintage Wood Figures to hang out with.

27 Responses
  1. Kirsty

    I love the retro feel! This belongs in a decorating blog haha! I particularly live the red, black and white sides! Stunning.

  2. Ninfa

    I like very much how you painted this cedar block: the colours, the particulars and your graphic sign. I love also the labirinth of your foregoing post, it's a bright idea!

  3. famiglia Parentini

    Dear Joel, we follow and love your blog from Italy! I wanted to tell you that the italian Vanity Fair wrote about you, would you like me to send you a copy? Ale

  4. Joel Henriques

    Thank you everybody! It's very simple but fun.

    famiglia Parentini – Hello Ale, wow I had no idea. I would totally love it if you could send me a copy! I'll send you a little toy or something in return. Could you email me so we can exchange information? jch200@mac.com

    Thanks Ale!

  5. molly

    As ever, I am so stunned by the fun, soaring quality of your illustrations. Your confidence with a line is enviable.

  6. Maiz

    This looks like so much fun to play with! I love the variety… the way it looks like day or night, and how the white side looks kind of foggy or wintry. Another great simple idea, Joel!

  7. Lynn

    My 5 year old son and I were inspired by these and your paper city… so he did the drawing and we shared the painting and came up with this.
    My 3 year old son loves playing with them.

    Thanks for your very enjoyable blog and lovely ideas.

  8. Zill.y

    Just had a look at your page with my almost 4 year old – he was all excited and asked, when we would go over to your house to play with the kids ;)

    Cheers from WA. Love your work!


  9. μπαμπάκα;

    Fantastic, as everything you do!
    Big fan here in Athens, Greece.
    I've just added you to my favorite blogs.

  10. Stacy

    Beautiful My kids would love these. Love Your Site!
    Quick question? I’ve made some smaller versions of these but I’m having problems with the paint pens bleeding – so i don’t get very crisp lines. Do you generally seal raw wood before you draw on it?

    toy making novice

    1. Thanks everybody!

      Stacy – Yes, depending on the wood, you sometimes need to coat it. with some sort of sealant before you use markers, or it will bleed. I have a non-toxic sealant that is great, but it’s hard to find. You could also use beeswax I think, but not sure how well the pen would write on it. Might be just fine. The other alternative, is to use acrylic paint, and just use a small brush to paint the design on. The paint won’t bleed, so you don’t have to seal the wood first.

      On this block of wood though, I didn’t need to seal it at all. I just drew on the raw wood. I’m not a wood expert, but maybe this was a closed grain wood or something, so it wasn’t so porous.

    2. Stacy

      Thanks. i ended up painting them with acrylic paint then drawing on them after. I did like how the wood looked thru the little windows though.Mind if I ask which sealant you were referring

    3. Nice! Upload a photo on the facebook page if you’d like! http://www.facebook.com/madebyjoel

      And I typically use a non-toxic Crystal Urethane by Timber Pro Coatings. I’m not sure how easy it is to find. There’s a green building supply store here in Portland that sells small cans of it. It’s pretty awesome.