Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman
Long lasting bark and Kalanchoe sleigh
Draw your sleigh out on a sheet of bark
Cut out the pattern
Keep it simple so that it is easy to glue. You can add delicate details later with vines and flowers.
Bark has a flaky side and a smooth side, so make sure the sides are mirror images to match the textures on all sides.
Unless of course you want to add texture by alternating the sides.
With hot glue, glue a long strip to create the floor, front and back of the sleigh
Follow the curves of the side patterns
Glue in a seat
Make sure the glue is secure before decorating
Cut two sections of a vine wreath for the skids
Secure the vine with decorative wire in bundles
Connect the skids with two twigs
Craft cross bars for the skids out of wire
Glue the sleigh to the skids
Paint all the exposed wire and glue bits with wood glue
Sprinkle with artificial snow
Glue in vines to follow the curves of the sleigh
Add vines to the skids
If the vines snap when you curve it soak it in warm water for a few hours
See the Tutorial below for more detailed instructions on how to manipulate twigs
Add more artificial snow where needed
Use floral glue to glue in the Kalanchoe flowers
Add in a few silver bells...
... a bit more snow and a few more vines
Design note: The Kalanchoe flowers remain pretty for a few weeks so it is well worth the effort.
Most stems, twigs and even sturdier branches can be bend into shapes. It takes practice and more than a bit of patience. The main idea is to slowly manipulate the branch without...
Wire a small twig gift-box for Christmas presents
A bark chip veneer is a great way to create a precise shape that looks natural but can't be found in nature.
Cover a Styrofoam shape with bark to create a bowl for a potted design
Cover a cardboard shape in cotton and bark to create a floral armature
A fluffy cuff lines the top edge of the bark Christmas Stocking
Keep in mind that in order to make a realistic looking fantasy design element, such as the wreath, you must focus on how this item would grow in nature.
The finish of every design should be flawless. Make sure there are no bits of glue visible in your design by carefully removing all traces of spills.
When you glue a structure with hot glue there are always a few stray strands of glue stuck all over the design. Blow it away with a hairdryer.
Butterfly hair clips are the perfect little claws to help you hold tiny items in place while you wait for glue to dry
Craft a bark sleigh that will last for weeks.
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This is my article that I wrote for the Mother's Day Design Issue of Canadian Florist Magazine