For my best friend's birthday, I wanted to make something she would use everyday in her future house... So why not creating coasters ?
Step 1: Choosing Materials
I chose to use 2mm cork sheets, that I bought in a local material shop. At first, I wanted to go with Balsa, or another "light" wood, but I couldn't find any near me (Aaaand... I'm lazy. So cork is nice. And beautiful.)
Piece of advice : 2mm is thin. You'd preferably go for something like 5-6mm. Because I don't have any cork sheet this size, I'll go with some cardboard and glue them together so that it gets a bit thicker.
I also wanted it to have a nice bottom, so I chose some felt.
Step 2: Size Matters
After some research (i.e. "looking for some coaster in my house, and checking their sizes"), I decided that 96mm would be the perfect size.
(Actually, 10cm would have been way easier...)
Step 3: Make Your Design
I wanted to make coasters that made my bestfriend think about her friends, so this one is really personnal : Stitch because I really love this little ball of fur, and some Forget-me-not... Because it's a beautiful flower :D
using inkscape, gimp, or any image manipulation program you like, create your design. Start with a 96mm diameter circle, and fill it with whatever you want.
Step 4: Engrave and Cut It
Using your favorite laser cutter, you can now cut your designs.
With my 2mm cork sheet, and a CO2 EPILOG Legend Elite HELIX 40 Watts, my settings were:
- to cut:
- Speed: 100%
- Power: 80%
- Frequency: 5000Hz
- Speed: 100%
- Power: 35%
Step 5: Glue Everything Up
I'm sorry, I didn't take any picture of this step (with the glue, I had to be fast...)
It simply consists in glueing the engraved-cork to the cardboard, cut it to size, glue it to the felt, and cut it again.
(I cut it when there was only the cardboard because it is way easier than cutting both cardboard and felt.)
Once it's done, let the glue dry for some time, and re-add some glue if necessary on the borders of the coasters.
Step 6: Use It ! (Also Called "Drink !")
Well, now that everything is ready, just use it ! :D