In-Depth Process: NWFA Award Winning 3D Medallion


Hallway MedallionWe were recently honored with an award from the National Wood Flooring Association for the Best CNC/Laser Cut Wood Floor of the Year. We have received many questions about how the medallion was made so we thought we would share some of the details here.

Emily Owens (Designer in Dallas) approached us on behalf of a client to design a custom seal for the floor in his library. The project already included Rift & Quartered White Oak Herringbone floors with Soldier Stack borders, double hand scraped, stained brown and finished with Tung Oil. The seal was icing on the cake of already extraordinary project.

This medallion is the result of using a combination of our Laser Cutting and CNC capabilities to create depth and dimension unlike any other medallion we had seen. Aaron Craft (On-staff Artist, Laser and CNC Operator) was the driving force behind this very unique approach to creating the medallion. We presented some test pieces to the designer, Emily, and she fell in love with it. This was when the real work started.

We had to make detailed 3D digital models to illustrate how much depth could be perceived with only a 1/16″ deep cut and ultimately created several more samples to verify. Every square inch of the medallion had to be custom designed. Not only starting with the specie and grain like usual, but also taking into account the 3 dimensional engraving that made it come alive.

Close Up MedallionThe original drawing had a checkered background within the seal which could have been extremely time consuming however we laminated Wenge and Maple together in various thicknesses and then using the CNC router checkered the material similar to how a gunstock is done which exposed both species and duplicated the drawing perfectly while adding yet another layer of depth.

After the medallion was assembled, it was meticulously labored over with hand tools to ensure that every square inch was exactly how we had envisioned it.

One of the hardest parts of the entire process was actually convincing the client to use such bold colors. As Rick Farrell said, it just seems un-American to make a brown American flag. We ultimately toned the brightness down using stain and the client embraced it wholeheartedly. This small splash of color added a point of interest within the library without being obtrusive.

Once stained, the medallion was finally laid into the floor. After almost 6 months of work went into it,our installers were understandably nervous while permanently placing it in the floor.

This was, by far, one of our most intricate and unique medallions we have made. We have set the bar very high for ourselves and we cannot wait for the opportunity to continue to push the envelope. We are very grateful to Emily Owens and Sebastian Construction Group for giving us the chance to work on this project.

Internally we would like to thank Aaron Craft (Artist, CNC and Laser Operator), Rick Farrell (Architect and Design Consultant) and Steve Welch (Owner) for collaborating on the actual and the rest of the team for all of the hard work and obsessive attention to detail in the installation and finishing phases.