Instead of working on a self healing cutting mat (tips) where its easier to separate a hot glued letters, today I worked on plastic. I save plastic shipping bags to use as mini tarps for making crafts as well as painting. (The more bags taped together, the larger the tarp.) The self healing mat is the better surface to work on as hot glue and plastic really bond well.
It is easier to create the word by measuring the space on the plastic taped to a drawing board, cut all the twigs to fit, and then hot glue them together on a self healing cutting mat or other solid surface that's safe for hot glue. I used an emery board to sand the tips down for better bonding surfaces, and wire cutters to break twigs I didn't need to saw.
|Plastic shipping bag cutting template, Not for gluing|
The twig word will be glue to a board with more twigs added. The letters need support or else they will come apart.
A few Tips on Gathering Twigs:
- Be Safe. Use a long stick to poke a branch on the ground first, a safety tip I was told many years ago. Branches can resemble snakes, and other varmits might be in the branch vicinity.
- Bring pruning shears when in an area where you can cut fresh twigs.
- Gather clean healthy twigs three to four times the amount you think you need
- Also look for curved and flexible twigs
- If you see something weird, but interesting on a twig...Leave it there unless you know exactly what it is. That's just me not being cool with things hatching in my home.
- Try to find a balance of bark textures and colors
- Wash with soapy water, and then air drying thoroughly before bringing them in doors or right when you do bring them inside when its not warm enough for the garden hose.