When Mother Nature Hands You Twigs

When Mother Nature Hands You Twigs

 
Storm Picture

Last week Mother Nature partied like it was 2016 at our house.

She shook her thunder and filled the sky with flashes of light and rained down buckets of drops and sent three feet of water rushing through our yard at lightning speed (pun totally intended).

And when the morning broke, the yard and driveway and fields were full of this.

Now some people might see debris.

Or giant logs.

Or mud-covered sidewalks.

But me?

I see opportunity.

A wonderful, glorious, amazing opportunity to make this……

Storm Picture with twigs

Let’s start with a little closer examination of our debris pile.

See all those twigs?

Stacks and stacks and stacks of twigs that you could use to make this.

twig wood sphere

A twig wood sphere.

I’ve seen these before in the store and they were dozens of dollars.

No worries.

You can make your own with a balloon and a little hot glue.

And here’s how I made it.

twigs

Start with twigs.

Mother Nature broke most of them for me, but in case she didn’t stop by your house, gather twigs from outside and break them into 4″ to 5″ pieces.

I used about 45 for the project.

balloon

Next, blow up a balloon.

You can make it as big or as small as you want, depending on the size of your sphere.

Make sure to get standard balloons (or a little thicker if you can find them).  You don’t want thin water balloons because those might pop in the middle of your project.

twig DIY

Place the balloon in a bowl.  This helps stabilize it when you are adding the twigs.

Start by gluing a triangle of twigs.

It works best if the twigs are all approximately the same size.

Elmer's Craft Bond

I partnered with Elmer’s to make this project and used the Craft Bond glue gun.

I love how easily it works with the glue sticks and how it really gave me control over how much glue I wanted to apply to the twigs.

Place your twig triangle on the balloon and start layering in more twigs.

Try not to glue directly to the balloon, it just makes more work later.

what to make with wood twigs

Here’s a close up of the twigs so you can see the basic pattern.

You don’t really need that much hot glue to hold the twigs in place.

Simply repeat this pattern over and over, it will give your sphere stability.

wood twig project

Continue gluing twigs around the balloon until you have completely covered it.

Check the sphere one more time to make sure you don’t have any holes left you need to fill.

Trim off excess strings from the hot glue.

wood sphere

And then all you do is pop the balloon.

It deflates and leaves behind the wood sphere.

There is a moment where you go yikes because now you see all the hot glue strings left behind when the balloon pops.

No worries.

Just trim all the excess glue and pull the balloon out from the center of the twig sphere (now you can see why you want to avoid gluing onto the balloon because it really sticks to the wood).

Storm Picture with twigs

And when you are done you’ll go from this.

twig wood sphere DIY

To this.

It really was an easy project.

And just between us….

….have you ever seen debris look any cuter. 🙂

PS  Now if I could just figure out a project for all those logs.

twig-wood-sphere-TOWER

I designed this project in collaboration with Elmer’s.

All opinions are my own.

Please see my disclosure page for more information.

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Comments

  1. Love it – I live in the woods so I have “the twigs”-will use in fall then spray orange for Halloween. Sherry

  2. G.E.N.I.O.U.S. !!!!!!!

  3. marydon ford :

    You are absolutely amazing … love the creativity

  4. Miz karianne, I bet those big logs would make a great bonfire for roasting hot dogs and marshmallows this Fall…..and clean up would be a breeze!
    Cute idea, thanks for sharing and have a great day!

  5. Oh my goodness, KariAnne! No longer will I think “when the world gives you lemons, make lemonade”. I’ll be thinking “when mother nature gives you twigs make a fabulous home decor item”. YOU ROCK! xo

  6. Cheryl Johnson :

    Love it! Pottery Barn is calling….

  7. How clever of you to be creative in the aftermath of a storm!♥ Love it.

  8. How clever of you to be creative in the aftermath of a storm!♥ Love it.

  9. Oh! Mother Nature’s Skirt Blew Up with this do-over!!
    You’re A-W-E-S-O-M-E!!!

  10. You are brilliant!

  11. I also have twigs…and logs which we slowly are cutting up. Cute idea! Yes, I hear Pottery Barn calling you too:)

  12. What a great idea for going with life’s flow and making the best of things. Thanks for the how-to!

  13. Leslie Watkins :

    Woo Hoo! Way to go!! Picking up sticks! What an ingenious idea..Love! Love! Love!

  14. I was thinking, get a chipper and make mulch. But this is so much prettier!

  15. What a great idea! You always are positive no matter what! Hopefully the water didn’t do too much damage.

  16. This truly is the cutest craft made from debris that I have ever seen! My secret to pesky hot glue strings is to hit it with a hot hair dryer. They disappear, like magic, instantly.
    If you get a moment please stop by Decor To Adore. The dachshunds of Storybook Cottage helped to create a country cornhole game complete with toss bags made with your glorious fabric.

  17. Love it! You have a great imagination.

  18. I love your glue gun!!! Don’t you have one in pink too???? Very creative!

  19. Leave it to you, you being a true-blue glass-half-full gal, to look at what some would deem a ‘debris disaster’ into art. Love it!! Now watcha gonna do with those logs? Don’t tell me you don’t have something in mind… 😉

  20. That is so darn cute. Now I need to find some twigs. What a clever idea KariAnne.
    Happy Monday.
    Hugs, Gee

  21. Bonnie Schulte :

    What a fun idea. Excuse me while I leave the room to go outside in search of twigs.

  22. Logs . . . can you say “fire pit?” 😉 I love your debris (or as Uncle Joe on Petticoat Junction used to say, “derbis”) orb!! Super-cute!

  23. I saw benches made from logs. They were sawn flat on the bottom and notched out on the top to hold a flat board..Placed all around a fire pit. It was really neat. Just an idea . I loved your twig idea. Mama Sue

  24. Made me think from ashes to beauty. Way to go!

  25. now that’s making lemonade from lemons! cute idea. I wish i had a big enough saw so i could come over and cut nice slices from those fallen logs. Everytime I see those adorable wood slice chargers for $$$$ I want to cry. But my little table saw could never make cuts that deep. heartbreak.

  26. I have driftwood for this project but now have to find the TIME! Very cute and love it

  27. The twig balls are beautiful. Love your step-by-step tutorial.

  28. There you go again…looking at things in a positive way!!

  29. You are so darn creative!!!! Love this!

  30. Loryl Fisher :

    I knew with your positive, cheerful attitude you’d make something from that debris. Just didn’t know it would be so gosh darn cute!! Now I need to go out to my son’s house and look for twigs! I could see these covered with twinkle lights and hung from the tree outside my parlor window.

  31. I love twig spheres like these! But every time I get close to buying some, I’m like THEY’RE JUST STICKS PUT AWAY THE WALLET. Yay DIY, I will be on the lookout for twigs!

    Also, did you know you can use a blow dryer or heat gun (like you’d use on embossing powder) to melt hot glue leftovers? It’s like magic, they basically disappear!

  32. I love this!!! Omg…I’m going twig hunting… 😉

  33. You’ve got to be the very best lemonade maker in the whole world. Yep!! Only you would take all of the lemons Mother Nature threw at you, smiled, picked them up and made a fantabulous twig sphere 🙂 I think you may have sent MN a raspberry, tossed your blonde curls and strutted away. You are a genius!!!!

  34. Oh, this little twig sphere is as cute as all get-out…I never would’ve even imagined this as your project and I did try to imagine what your project would be as I read your first sentences…this is just wonderful, unique, and clever! I like that it sounds easy enough, too, because people like me need “easy”…although, I can see I will probably be fighting with that glue as I’m all thumbs. 🙂 I love this and love your attitude, KariAnne…you keep right on showing Mother Nature she can’t bring you down!

  35. Of course you did!! Amazing!! So dang cute!

  36. Fabulous!!!! You are a creative genius, looking at little twigs and putting together a lovely mantel decoration. We had a guy take a downed tree and slice it into 6″ thick round pieces and used them as pavers through our veggie garden. They lasted a couple of years and then as they broke into chunks were recycled into our multi tiered fairy garden.

  37. LOL I KNEW you’d make something out of the miss. I just waited…and there it is! So fun! Love it. Hope the cleanup is going well. 😀

  38. Cindy Pierce :

    Amazing!!!! I just love it!

  39. How very nice of Mother Nature to give you just what you needed just when you needed it! I’m sure she knows that you must need the bigger logs for something else. But what was she thinking about with all of the mud, maybe a facial or two? Loving these twig spheres and the idea to spray paint them too! You always see the possibilities in seemingly impossible situations. You are inspiration with a red lipstick smile! Thank-you for a fun post.

  40. I made two today Your instructions were perfect and they are out on my deck with my summer furniture. I love them. Thanks for the inspiration I needed today.

  41. well done Karianne!

    Your twig sphere looks beautiful!

    gail

  42. Bloody wonderful, I do so like

  43. This is gorgeous!! I have a wheel barrow full of twigs from the last windy night! Maybe I won’t put them to the curb after all!! You are amazing!!

  44. Oh my! I have twigs everywhere I look outside. I love this idea!!!

  45. We lost a branch of our sycamore tree last Friday. My husband was going to chop it up and throw it away. I asked him to cut the beautiful branch into little logs. They are a muted white and gray. I can stack in a pyramid and tie with thick twine or cut into little wedges for ornaments or name tags!
    Love your twig idea! We think alike when it comes to tree “debris”.

  46. Now that’s thinkin’! I love it!

    Tania

  47. Extremely clever use of all those annoying twigs! Smaller twigs ….smaller twig balls! These twigs also show up in Osprey nests to camouflage the fledgling.
    Sandra
    http://www.lowcountryfelicitylife.com

  48. And this is why I just adore you!!! I love that you always find something good about everything. Thank you! 🙂

  49. Donna Marie :

    Up here in Southern Indiana all I got were sore muscles!!! Burned the twigs before I read this blog!!! Maybe next time. We lost three trees, so it was quite a storm!!!

  50. Very creative project!!
    I just knew you would
    find the silver lining!!

  51. I’m going camping soon. I’m taking my glue gun and some balloons with me! Think I will put some LED lights in my sphere and hang it on our camper awning.