30 Days of Glowforge Crafts

30 Days of Glowforge Crafts main article image
Posted on August 8, 2021 by Isabella Ruiz
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For this 30 days of crafts challenge, all you need is your Glowforge, some creativity, and a few materials to complete your crafts! No Adobe Illustrator required! Each of these crafts can be designed and complete with the Glowforge features, no need to buy files or even design them in Illustrator or Photoshop! Here is a list of supplies that you will need (you can buy most of these items at your local craft store or order them from Amazon).

Materials

  • Glowforge
  • Glowforge design subscription
  • 1/4″ birch plywood
  • 1/8″ MDF board
  • Keychain hardware
  • Earring stud/dangle hardware
  • Jewelry Pliers
  • Jump rings
  • Bamboo cutting board
  • Twine or string
  • Magnetic strip tape
  • Wood glue
  • E6000
  • Craft clamps
  • Painters tape

Glowforge features

To complete these crafts the only features of the Glowforge design space you will need to use are: Search Graphics, Create Outline, Resize, and Insert Shape. Here is a quick rundown of each feature.

Search Graphics

For most projects, you will need to search for a graphic to use, for each project you will type a keyword into search. Our first project will be a floral keychain so I would type floral or flower to find a graphic that I want to use. The next feature we will need to use is Create Outlines.

Create Outlines

Select the design that you want to outline, a toolbar will pop up on the right of the design space. The first tool (circled in red) is the create outline feature. Hit the outline feature and it will load a cut or score path around your design, the automatic setting is a quarter inch around your design, I generally set it to a tenth of an inch.

Resize

To resize a design select the part that you would like to resize. In the bottom left corner a ruler icon will pop up, select this and it will open the resize bar. There are two ways to resize your design. The first is to select the edge of your design and drag it to scale it up or down, the second is to adjust the numbers in the W and H rows.

Insert Shapes

To insert shapes click the button with the circle covering the square (circled in red) this feature is great for making small holes for keychains and dangle earrings, it is also a great feature for making puzzles!

These are all the features you will need to accomplish your 30 days of crafts!

Day 1: Floral Keychain

Day one! The first project is a floral keychain, look through the graphics and pick out a floral graphic that you like, next scale it to the size that you like, I always recommend a test print so you don’t waste too much material! After you select your graphic set it to engrave or score and create an outline around the graphic. Set the outline to cut and use the insert shape feature to create a circle, I generally make my circle about 0.1″ and set it to cut. I use 1/8″ MDF and wrap the entire sheet with painter’s tape. Hit print and let the Glowforge work it’s magic. Once you’re done peel the tape, next you will need keychain hardware to attach to the keychain. You now have a complete keychain!

Day 2: Floral Earrings

You will use the same design that you made for day one, If you would like to scale down your design use the resize shapes tool, duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste). Once you do that you are ready to print, I will use the same 1/8″ MDF board. Once you print peel that tape and use your jewelry pliers to open a jump ring and put it through the earring, next add the dangle earring hardware and close the jump ring. You now have a cute pair of dangle floral earrings!

Day 3: Floral Magnet

You will use the same design that you made for days one and two, take this time to scale your design up or down depending on how large you would like your magnet to be. Now print, peel the tape and you are ready to attach your magnet. Magnetic tape works great but you can also use the magnetic dots that you have to glue on, in my experience magnetic tape can sometimes fall off if not secured properly. You have a magnet for your kitchen fridge!

Day 4: Coasters

For this project, you can create about anything you’d like! For this project, I will make 3″ circle coasters and I would like to have plants on the coasters. First I am going to use the insert shapes and create a 3″ circle, next I will search the graphics for a plant I’d like. I will set the circle to cut and the plant to engrave, score or cut. For the coasters, I would like to use the 1/4″ birch plywood (wrapped in painter’s tape) but acrylic or MDF would also work. After I hit print they are ready to go. The only other extra step you can take if you’d like is to add an epoxy or some other form of waterproofing. Even if you choose not to do this step the coasters will still be perfect!

Day 5: Dog tags/Pet tags

These dog tags are perfect for cats and dogs! First create a circle that is 1.5″, (if you have a smaller dog you may want to scale down the circle). I am going to use the text feature to create my dog’s name, I will put the name closer to the top and use the text tool again to make my phone number, then move that closer to the bottom of the tag. I want to add a graphic to my dog tag, I will search for a mountain graphic and add that to the middle of my design, Lastly add a 0.1″ circle to the top of your design. Using either 1/4″ birch plywood or 1/8″ MDF hit print! After you peel your tape off of your design, use your pliers to open the jump ring and put it through the dog tag add it to your pet’s collar and close the jump ring.

Day 6: Nursery Sign

To create this nursery sign you’ll need 1/4″ birch plywood. Create a circle using insert shapes, next use the type tool to make your text. I make three separate text lines that say Shhh…, Aiyana, and is sleeping. Personally, I prefer the look of words cut out vs. engraved when it comes to signs. I also decided to add star shapes that can double as a way to hang the sign. Hit print, peel the tape and your sign is complete!

Day 7: Snake earrings

First, wrap your 1/8″ MDF board in tape and set it in your Glowforge bed. Next, we will create the design, search for a snake graphic that you like and add it to the design space. I want these earrings to be studs so I will not add a hole at the top, I will set the design to cut, duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste, hit print, and once done peel the tape. Use your E6000 to apply a dot of glue to the stud hardware and let it cure. Your earrings are done!

Day 8: Snake Keychain

You will use the same design that you made for day eight, because I made the design as a stud I will need to add a 0.1″ hole to the top of the design for the keychain hardware if you would like to scale down your design use the resize shapes tool. Once you do that you are ready to print! I will use the same 1/8″ MDF board. Add your keychain hardware and you’re done!

Day 9: Football Sign

This project has two simple steps! First look for a football graphic and set it to cut, now select the text tool and type in whatever sports team you root for! You can set it to engrave, score, or cut, whichever you prefer! Hit print and You have one football sign ready for those sweet, sweet Superbowl parties. (I use 1/4″ birch plywood for this project).

Day 10: Geometric puzzle – Part 1

This geometric puzzle will take two days to complete for the first day we will make and cut the design. In the graphics search bar, use the keyword geometric to find a design you like, try to find a design that will cut out multiple pieces instead of one large piece, after you select the design create an outline around the puzzle pieces. We also need a back to the puzzle to keep the pieces stored when we are not using it or are trying to solve it. Select the outline you made and copy and paste it to make the back to the puzzle (only copy and paste the back, not the puzzle). Using 1/4″ birch plywood set both the outline and the puzzle design to cut. Peel off the tape and you are ready for part two!

Day 11: Geometric puzzle – Part 2

For day two you will either need E6000 or wood glue (I recommend wood glue for a stronger bond). Remove all the puzzle pieces so you are left with the front frame and the back piece, now glue the bottom of the frame to the top of the bottom piece. To get an even stronger bond you can use painter’s tape to hold it together while it drys or you can use clamps to hold the wood together and apply pressure. I have seen the local dollar tree offer crafting clamps! Wipe off any excess glue that runs off the sides and let dry. Once your puzzle is completely dry, your puzzle is ready to be solved and you can add your puzzle pieces back in.

Day 12: Mountains sign

This project will be super simple! Prep your 1/4″ birch plywood and lay it in the Glowforge bed. Next, open up design space and look through the graphics, I typed in the keyword mountain. Once I find a mountain that will cut out correctly (some will cut out every piece and you are left with several pieces of a mountain instead of one whole mountain sign) add it to the Glowforge and scale the design up or down. Next hit print and you’re done! One mountain sign is ready to be displayed!

Day 13: Mountains keychain

The mountain keychain is made on a 1/8″ MDF board. First select the create shape tool and make a rectangle and set it to cut (I chose to round my edges but you do not have to), next look through the graphics for a mountain that you like and position it inside the rectangle, set the mountain to engrave, make sure you leave space for the text. Select your text tool and create two separate text lines the first will say “the mountains” and the second “are calling”. Set both of these to engrave or score. (I find that scoring takes less time than an engraving). Lastly, make a 0.1″ circle at the very top for your keychain hardware. Hit print! Once you’re done, peel the tape and attach your keychain hardware, one fancy keychain is all done!

Day 14: Mountains necklace

This necklace will use the same design (but different material, I recommend 1/8″ MDF board) as day 12, with two alterations, the first will be the size. Scale the design down to an appropriate necklace size. The second thing you will need to do is add a hole or two for the chain or twine that you will use. I recommend a 0.1″ hole. Print and assemble!

Day 15: Celtic Knot earring

These earrings are very easy to make on a 1/8″ MDF board. Type Celtic Knot into the graphics search and pick the one you favor most, set the graphic to engrave (or score). Resize the design for studs, my studs are normally around 0.6″. Next add an outline that will cut the stud out adjust the outline measurements, duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste) and you are ready to print! Ready your E6000 and adhere the stud to the back of your earring design!

Day 16: Geometric earring

The process for your geometric earrings will be the same as day 15 but you will instead use the keyword geographic to find a design that you like for your earring. Once you have found the right graphic repeat the same steps that you used on day 15 and duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste).

Day 17: State keychain

These state keychains are fantastic for local craft fairs or customized gifts for friends and family. We will make our keychains on a 1/8″ MDF board. Open design space and use your state’s name as a keyword in the graphics search bar. Once you find your state and a graphic that you like add it to your design space. The next step is to add a 0.1″ circle for your keychain hardware, depending on your state’s shape the location of the hole may change places. Print your design, add the hardware, and boom! One state-themed keychain is ready to be added to your favorite set of keys.

Day 18: Custom name sign

To make a custom name sign we will be using 1/4″ birch plywood. Navigate to your text tool and select a font that is cursive and that all the letters are touching, this is important! If you select another text all of your letters with cut out separately and will not be connected. Once you type out your name select the cut option and print!

Day 19: Alien earrings

Prepare your 1/8″ MDF board and lay it in the Glowforge bed. Next, type the keyword alien into the graphics search bar, look for the alien head that you like most and add it to the design space, set the design to cut, resize your design, duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste)and you are ready to print. Once you are done printing, warm up your E6000 and get gluing! Attach the stud hardware to the backs of the earring design and allow them to dry.

Day 20: Custom state sign

To make this state sign we will use the same design as day 18 with a few minor changes. First, you need to resize your design, make it as small or as big as you would like, next remove the hole that we added to the keychain design. If you would like you can add a heart and position it over where the town you live in. Set that step to cut, engrave or score, whichever you fancy most! Hit Print and watch your design come to life.

Day 21: Space puzzle – Part 1

This space puzzle will take two days! First make a rectangle or square shape (whichever shape you would like your puzzle to be, you will need two of these. One for the front and one for the back, normally I make my puzzles nine inches so I can fit both the front and back on one sheet of 1/4″ birch plywood, next I will go to the graphics search bar and type in the keyword space, pick three-six space-themed graphics that you would like to be the puzzle pieces, set each graphic to score, next you will select each graphic and use the outline feature so it will cut out that specific puzzle piece. After you have your outlines around each piece you can go back and add any additional details or graphics you may want to use as decoration on the puzzle but don’t want to be cut out (stars or small planets). Set the designs to score first and cut second and you are ready to print!

Day 22: Space puzzle – Part 2

After the puzzle is printed you are ready to peel the tape, peel the tape off of each puzzle piece and set them to the side, next peel the tape of the front and back piece. Take the front of the puzzle and flip it over to the back, apply wood glue or E6000 (preferably wood glue). It is very important to put the glue on the backside of the front piece especially if you have words, if you glue the wrong side your puzzle will be mirrored and any words will appear backward. Glue the back of the front piece to either side of the back piece (I tend to glue it to the back of the back piece). Once you align the edges and apply both sides together use either clamps to get a better bond of the wood, or you can wrap some tape tightly around the puzzle. After the glue dries you can add the puzzle pieces back in and you have one space puzzle ready for blast off!

Day 23: Bee earrings

Another simple yet beautiful project. Add a circle to your design space and resize it to .6″ (or whatever size you prefer) next open the graphics search and use the keyword bee, select whichever bee you like most and resize it to fit inside your circle, duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste) and you are ready to print. Once all the tape is off your 1/8″ MDF board, use your E6000 to adhere to the earring studs.

Day 24: Moon phases sign

This project can be made on either 1/8″ MDF board or 1/4″ birch plywood. In the Glowforge graphics search use the keyword moon phases and select the graphic you like best. We will be making a sign/garland so set the graphic to cut. Once you have cut out your design peel the tape off and use the E6000 to glue twine to the backs of the phases. You now have a moon phase garland to hang up in your home!

Day 25: Custom cutting board

This custom cutting board is perhaps the easiest of all the crafts! To make my cutting boards I use bamboo boards, you can easily find these at almost any grocery store, Ross, Home Goods, or even order off of amazon! First, use masking tape to cover the area that you will be engraving onto, next load your cutting board into the Glowforge bed. Open design space, there are a few ways to customize your cutting board. The first is to add text. Open the text tool and type out the words you want to engrave, set the text to engrave and you are ready to go! The second way is to engrave a graphic, to do this open the file you wish to use or select a graphic from the graphic search, for example, if I wanted a cheese block engraved into my board I would use the keyword cheese after you find a graphic you like, set it to engrave and print! The last way to customize your cutting board is my personal favorite, use a handwritten recipe and engrave it into the cutting board. To do this scan your design and upload the file or use Glowforges trace feature and set the design to engrave. I recommend using digital calipers to measure the width of your board to get the best engraving. These custom cutting boards are a perfect gift for anybody!

Day 26: Name magnet

To create a name magnet open the design space and use the shape feature to insert the shape of your choosing (generally I use a rectangle), I try to keep my magnets at two inches in height and adjust the width according to the name length, next use the text tool and select a font you like, because we won’t be cutting these out it does not matter if the letters of the font touch. After you select your font, set the name design to either score or engrave (score tends to be faster but engrave has a cleaner look). Set the design to first score or engrave (whichever you choose), then to cut out the outline. Hit Print! After the tape is all peeled flip your magnet over to the back, take magnet tape, and cut a piece to apply to the back. I recommend the medium to thick magnetic tape as it tends to be stronger than the skinny magnetic tape and holds better to the fridge.

Day 27: Name Keychain

We will use the same design for our keychain with light editing. Open your design and shrink it down to whatever size you desire (in my experience a keychain that is two inches vertically is a perfect size), if you like the look of whatever shape you choose originally you can keep it, or you can delete the shape and create an outline around your text/name if you’d like. After you decide if you want to keep the shape or switch to a tighter outline add a circle shape and change it to be 0.1″ position it at the top or middle of the keychain to make a hole for the hardware. Lay your 1/8″ MDF board into the Glowforge bed and hit print! Once your design is done and your tape is peeled, add the keychain hardware. One more keychain to add to your set of keys!

Day 28: Monstera earrings

Perfect for any plant lover. Open the graphics search and use the keyword monstera, select whichever plant leaf you like most, resize it, set it to cut, and duplicate the design to make two earrings (copy and paste), because the monstera leaves have holes in them, depending on the design you may not have to add a hole at the top for the earring hardware. Once all the tape is off your 1/8″ MDF board, add the dangle earring hardware.

Day 29: Name puzzle – Part 1

This name puzzle will take two days! First, make a rectangle shape, you will need two of these. One for the front and one for the back, normally I make my name puzzles (horizontally) four inches tall and adjust the width according to the name length so I can fit both the front and back on one sheet of 1/4″ birch plywood, next I will go to the text tool and type the name I will be using, stick to a text where the letters do not touch so each letter will be its own puzzle piece. Set the text/letters to cut first and the outline to cut second and you are ready to print!

Day 30: Name puzzle – Part 2

After the puzzle is printed you are ready to peel the tape, peel the tape off of each puzzle piece and set them to the side, next peel the tape of the front and back piece. Take the front of the puzzle and flip it over to the back, apply wood glue or E6000 (preferably wood glue). It is very important to put the glue on the backside of the front piece especially because you are working with a puzzle with letters, if you glue the wrong side your puzzle will be mirrored and the name will appear backward. Glue the back of the front piece to either side of the back piece (I tend to glue it to the back of the back piece). Once you align the edges and apply both sides together use either clamps to get a better bond of the wood, or you can wrap some tape tightly around the puzzle. After the glue dries you can add the puzzle pieces back in and you have one custom name puzzle, to take this puzzle a step further you can paint each letter or include paint so the receiver of the name puzzle can paint it themselves!

I would love to hear what crafts you tried, comment below and tell me!

Happy Lasering!


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