For some reason or another, my girlfriend gets Fingerhut catalogs on a regular basis. One day she came across a pretty nice clock which she loved:
So when our Anniversary and Christmas time came around, instead of paying $80 (or as low as 9.99/month! ... lol), I decided to make the clock myself. Depending on what you have laying around, you can make this clock/sconce set for (much) less than $28 and the craftsmanship you use can make it a very thoughtful and beautiful gift for your loved one.
Step 1: Materials
For this project, you will need the following;
- (11' 8") of (3/4" x 2.5") wood (8' boards cost ~$4.00 each).....8.00
- 1.25" Wood Screws (WalMart, <$2.00 for 100 ct)......................2.00
- A clock set (Walmart, $5.00).........................................................5.00
- A nice wood stain (I used Mahogany, $4.00 per small can)...4.00
- Varnish, if you're feeling fancy ($4.00 per small can)...............4.00
- Don't forget the batteries! ($2.00)................................................2.00
- Removable 3M strips (~$3.00).....................................................3.00
Total materials cost.....................................................................28.00
Step 2: Making the Cuts
The first step is to cut the boards to the desired lengths, as shown in the diagram below. All in all, you will need to cut the following board lengths:
(2) 5" long pieces
(4) 6" long pieces
(5) 10" long pieces
(2) 14" long pieces
(1) 18" long piece
For the supports on the back of the clock and sconces, simply rip (2) 5" and (1) 10" pieces (from the list above) down the middle to make (4) 5" x 1.25" and (2) 10" x 1.25" pieces. My boards came in 8' lengths, so I cut mine according to the 2nd image below to minimize scrap wood.
Step 3: Putting It All Together
Now that we have prepared all of the pieces, we may begin assembling the clock and sconces. Take your time and layout the pieces (good side down) as shown in the diagram on the previous step. The easiest way to do this is to make sure that the ends of each piece are staggered 2" from the ends of the next piece.
Once you have all of the pieces properly aligned, put the 1.25" wide supports on the back as shown in the diagram. Just make sure that the supports touch all of the boards and they are at least 1" from the outer edges of the clock and sconces. Predrill holes for each of the screws (1 from each board to each support) and then screw in the screws.
At this point, only attach one support (the upper one) to the sconces. You will attach the other support after the next step, in which the sconce shelves are attached. At this point, I should mention that the picture below doesn't exactly match the diagram in Step 3, but you should follow the diagram
Step 4: Attaching the Sconce Shelves
Now measure about 1.25" up from the lower edge of the 6" pieces of the sconces and predrill 3 holes to attach the sconce shelves. Next line up the sconce shelf on the opposite side and finish predrilling the holes into the shelves. Finally, attach the shelves with some wood screws.
Step 5: Attaching the Last Supports
Now return to Step 3 and finish attaching the last sconce supports. Be careful not to overlap screws!
Step 6: Making the Clock a Clock
Make measurements to find the exact center of the 18" board of the clock. At the center of the board, drill a hole large enough to fit the clock mechanism through (pic 1). The hole should be just large enough that you can screw the clock mechanism securely into the clock (pic 2). Tighten the mechanism such that it is flush with the back of the clock.
Step 7: Staining
The next step is to stain the clock and sconces, both front and back. If you use a dark mahogany stain, 1-2 coats should be sufficient. Apply the stain evenly with either a brush or a rag according to the manufacturer's directions. After the stain has dried (about 24hrs to dry completely), you may add some layers of varnish to give the pieces a nice sheen. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's directions carefully.
Step 8: Clock Hands and Numbers
Once your stain and varnish have dried, it's time to finish the clock. First attach the hands that were included in the clock kit. Next, attach the self-adhesive numbers included in the clock. You can do that with a protractor and a compass, or if you're up for a challenge you can try to follow the second hand around the clock, putting down numbers in 5-second increments!
Now you have a very nice, functional decoration that makes an awesome gift! I gave one to my girlfriend for our anniversary, and one to her Mama for Christmas.
Step 9: How's It Hanging?
To complete the package, you need a way to hang the clock and sconces up on the wall. If you don't mind drilling holes into the wall, then all you have to do is find some studs and drill away! However, I live in an apartment, so I like to minimize the damage I do to the walls. Towards that end, I found these 3M velcro/adhesive strips which hold 3 lbs. apiece (see pic 1). These strips are nice because they not only hold the clock on the wall, but the velcro allows you to take down the clock, replace the battery, and put the clock back up. I used one strip on each of the sconces and two strips on the clock. Simply set the clock, put on the strips, hang the clock/sconces, and enjoy!