BFF Wooden Medallion Pendants

BFF Wooden Medallion Pendants

Meghan was due yesterday. We will be going out there on Friday (unless she goes into labor before then ) and I will be staying until the Little Guy is born and then some 🙂 Of course, the Little Guy will be receiving many gifts, and I wanted to make sure the Little Lady felt just as special and loved. So, of course Gammy has been busy making a few special things for her, too.

Little Lady has a very good friend, let’s call her Sweet P(al). They’ve grown up together and love each other dearly. Here is Sweet P (left) and Little Lady (right). (Photo was taken by Andrea, Sweet P’s mom. Thanks, Andrea!)


I’m hoping I get a chance to meet Sweet P on this trip, and decided that I wanted to make something for her, too. I decided on a B(est)F(riends)F(orever) gift that both girls could share. The other day I was reminded of a project I’ve wanted to do for some time now. I saw these lovely Painted Medallion Pendants on Prairie Mouse’s Flickr Photo Stream. Every time Tim takes down a branch in the yard, I save many of the pieces, and have him cut up many of the branches into round slices for coasters, buttons, checkers, and whatever crafty endeavor pops into my head 🙂 I’ve been wanting to make pendants for a long time, and was inspired by Prairie Mouse’s pendants and hit my wood stash running!

BFF Wooden Medallion Pendants

Materials Needed:
2 wooden medallions from branches, with or without the bark (Mine are 1 3/4″ x 1/4″)
cording, string, yarn, etc
fine tip permanent black marker

copy of pattern or any design
packing tape
wood finish

Cut out your medallions from a wooden branch. My medallions are 1 3/4″ x 1/4″ but you can make them any size you want. The diameter of your branch has an important say in the matter 🙂 Drill a 1/4″ hole near the top. Sand top and edges smooth.

Decide on your design. I used the smallest bird on my Stacking Birdie Applique Block and reduced the pattern to 66%. I then made a mirror image of the bird, because when done, I wanted the birds to “face” one another and “chat” … as BBFs do 🙂 The pattern I used can be found HERE.




NOTE: Obviously, if you feel comfortable free handing a design, you will not need to work with patterns. Simply lightly draw a design on the face of the medallion and move on to painting.

Cut out your design leaving a little extra paper around the edge.

On the back side of the design, rub a pencil across the back, making sure to cover all the front edges.

Tape the design to the medallion. I like to use packing tape since it is wide. Trace over the design, pushing just hard enough to mark the wood, without denting the surface. (The tape helps prevent your tracing tool from ripping the paper pattern and marking the wood.)

Paint the medallions as desired. Note: I used our Soy Paint. I wanted to be able to see the wood through the paint so I watered down the paint, then went back and used the paint without water to add highlights. After the paint as dried completely, use a fine tip permanent marker to outline your design and add detail.

On the back of the medallions I wrote: Little Lady ((heart)) Sweet P “BFFs”

When your medallion is completely dry, erase any visible pencil markers. Now, you may chose to apply a finish to the wood. I used our Three Bees Lemon/Lavender wood polish. Below is a picture of one medallion with finish and one without. I love how the wood polish gives the wood protection and a rich patina. After the finish sets in the wood for a while, buff. Note: You want to make sure you get rid of any extra polish or oils can stain clothing.

Of course, since I made the Wooden Medallion Pendants for Little Lady and her BBF, it only seemed right that I made a matching set for Pixie and Fairy, since these sisters are definitely BFFs 🙂 (Not to worry, Bug has not be forgotten, I’ll share what I did for him later 🙂

Cut cording to desired length. Since it needs to slip over a head, make sure you make it long enough. I like to cut mine extra long so it can be adjusted on a child. I cut my cording 34″ long. Fold cord in half, and slide the cord through the medallion front to back. Slide the 2 ends through the loop and pull.

When you’ve sized the pendant on the child, make a simple knot on the end, and cut off access cording.

Whether you want to make this for a couple of best friends, or for anyone, they are simple to make, and make a lovely gift. Think how nicely they would slide into a stocking or wooden shoe 🙂




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  1. So Sweet! Great Idea! I think they’ll love it! Best wishes for Litle Guy!

  2. Oh my cuteness! I am so in love with these! Too stinkin’ cute. I too save branch slices all the time just in case.

  3. ok, those are just super cute. what a great idea, so much sweeter then the BFF necklaces, because grandma made them. <3

  4. Is there any chance that the pendants will crack later on or that the bark will come off? Would it be better to treat the wood before you paint it (I saw one recommendation with sugar water for two days)? How long does the wood need to dry after cutting and before sanding it?

    1. The wood pieces I used were taken from our brush pile from this summer's tree trimming… so they are pretty fresh. If you were building something where the wood shrinking as it aged would be a problem, you'd definitely want aged wood. But the pendants can shrink a bit as they age without hurting the structure. The bark will definitely come off if it isn't glued on. I wound up taking the bark off the pendants I gave the girls, and they still looked wonderful.

      Soaking the wood in sugar water sounds like an interesting approach. I've never done that. We just periodically rub a wood finish into all our wood toys every few months. It seems to prevent the wood from cracking. We all love to finish our wood items. It feels so good 🙂

      1. Hello Kimara,

        Thanks for your reply. Did you let the wood dry for a longer time before painting on it?


        1. No..,. I painted them right away. Again, if I was doing a bigger project, I would have used aged wood, but for these little pendants, it really didn't seem to matter. Have fun making some yourself 🙂

          1. Thanks for all the explanations. My son just sawed a log in slices and we are on our way to buy some paint.

          2. Have fun 🙂 Let us know how it turns out.

  5. Hi, My name is Kate and I work for a company called Bear. As a reward for our loyal customers we want to send them a wooden medal to maintain our rustic and natural brand image. I was wondering if it was possible for you to carve your wood slices with specific names and we could order and purchase them direct from you??

    Your help would be much appreciated!


    1. Thanks for thinking of us, but we do not sell finished products. As a matter of fact, our store is no longer open at all. Wishing you the best finding someone that can help you 🙂

  6. Hi, i was wonderingyour take on shellac.. is it actually non-toxic and recommended for childrens toys etc? does a beeswax finish seal the wood? Any info or opinions you have are very much appreciated!

    1. I almost always use a beeswax finish when I make items for children since they seem to spend so much time in their mouths 🙂 If you do use another type of finish, make sure it is NON TOXIC and has the words FOOD SAFE on the label. Finishes that are used on cutting boards, wooden salad bowls and spoons must be free of toxins and safe to eat off. You will often see a bowl that states "For display purposes only." Which means it is NOT safe to put in your mouth.

      Beeswax does seal the wood… to a point. Occassionally, I go over all the toys with a beeswax polish. The beeswax will break down over time and need to be reapplied. The plus to all of this… beeswax is wonderful to work with, smells delightful, is great for your hands, and polishing wood is surprisingly zen-ish 🙂

      Hope that helps.

  7. Those are awesome!!! How did you cut the slices? Is there a specific tool you would recommend?

    1. Tim used a table saw. I'm sure there are other saws you could use, too. Obviously, be careful 🙂 The branches can bounce back. Wear safety glasses. I've made many since these and they are all cute. Have fun!

  8. Yours is the first blog I read this morning and you started me off with a smile! 🙂 I can so relate to the being impatient and impulsive! When I decide I want to do something I want to do it NOWu2026especially when it comes to home projects.
    Best wishes to you and your new loveu2026.Iu2019m sure youu2019ll have many happy years together!

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