Zebrawood Veneer Gift Decoration

This is a gift that I wrapped for my father. He's a carpenter and had given me some zebrawood veneer he had lying around, so of course my natural inclination was to wrap a gift with it for him.

The wooden triangle-pattern decoration isn't complicated, but it takes some patience and careful work.


  • Gift wrapped in plain paper (something nonglossy with a matte finish is best, like the kraft paper I used)
  • Wood veneer (available at Lee Valley Tools)
  • White glue
Zebrawood Veneer Gift Decoration, in Progress
Zebrawood Veneer Gift Decoration, in Progress


  1. Choose what side of your veneer sheet is the front. On the back, use a pencil and ruler to draw your pattern. I drew triangles, but squares or stripes would work too. The shapes should be straight-edged and not too small because it can be difficult to cut veneer in curves and small pieces will break off.
  2. Cut out your shapes using a utility blade or craft knife. Use a sharp blade and make several passes over the wood to complete each cut (you won't be able to cut all the way through with one slice). Be patient and don't use too much pressure or you could split or crack the wood.
  3. Spread a thin layer of glue evenly to the back of each shape and attach to the top of the gift. Leave a thin space between each shape for a mosaic effect.


  • I cut then glued each piece as I went so I wouldn't lose track of which piece went where. You could also number each piece then lay it out on the gift, tracing where each one goes and marking each spot with the corresponding number. Or go freeform and cut out a bunch of shapes and play with the arrangement afterward.