Dragonfly tutorial using re-purposed materials


How to make a dragonfly from discarded materials. This particular one is made from an old rusted out sign, chair leg and old keys. I used a plasma cutter to cut out wings from old rusted sign. I then primered and painted chair leg. The next thing you do is lay out the wings and drill holes in the metal wings and leg. You will use two 1 inch wood screws per wing. I wanted to do something different for the eyes so I went with old keys and the antennas come from an wire decor item that used to hang on the wall. The final step is to use a clearcoat spray to seal the metal and leg. These look wonderful on porches, in the garden and even in the house! www.facebook.com/repurposedlifeokla
I used a plasma cutter to cut out wings.
Wings cutout with plasma cutter
Drill holes through metal wings and chair leg
Once you have your holes drilled, you will need 1 inch wood screws to attach the wings to the body.
You can attach hanger with top screw.
keys for eyes
Strips of metal attached with a screw and then shaped.
Last step is to spray clearcoat to seal metal and wood.
Here is the finished dragonfly!

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Tina @ Repurposed Life

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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Have a question about this project?

9 questions
  • Ger2484190
    on Jun 19, 2016

    What is a plasma cutter?

    • Brenda Cooley
      on Jul 7, 2016

      It is a welder's tool to cut through metal or purhaps burn through metal

  • Buttons
    on Jun 19, 2018

    Should fanblades be sanded b4 painting?

  • Sharon Hughes
    on Aug 20, 2018

    What are the dimensions of finished project?

  • Sandy
    on Aug 30, 2018

    Can you use plastic blades? Neighbors fan fell from the ceiling, roof leak, can you use plastic blades?

  • Cassie
    on Sep 28, 2019

    Did you bend the keys upward for the eyes? and what did you use at the end of the tail? It was hard to see these 2 things in the pictures.


    I love this dragonfly and I love that its made from old junk and broken materials that most people would just throw a way.

    • Tina @ Repurposed Life
      on Sep 29, 2019

      HI Cassie! No, I didn't bend the keys I just angled them to and used a screw to hold them in place! The tail is made from an old piece of jewelry. I also used a screw to attach and hold in place! Hope this helps! Have a great weekend!!

  • Cassie
    on Sep 28, 2019

    Did you bend the keys upward for the eyes? and what did you use at the end of the tail? It was hard to see these 2 things in the pictures.


    I love this dragonfly and I love that its made from old junk and broken materials that most people would just throw a way.

  • Deb
    on Oct 10, 2019

    Very creative and unique

  • Julie Deane
    on Feb 18, 2020

    I love this!! I up-cycle and repurpose as well. I have yet to find a clear sealer that doesn’t leave a film of sorts on my projects. Does the one you used leave any kind of film or like spray dots? How long dies the wood portion f your dragon fly last outside? The wings and this are awesome!! From one artist to another great work love it

    • Tina @ Repurposed Life
      on Feb 19, 2020

      Hi Julie!

      I just brush on a water based sealer . As far as how the legs last, if one will just reseal each spring, being solid wood they should last for a long time!

    • Julie Deane
      on Feb 19, 2020

      Thank you so much 😃

  • Justine Martin
    on May 24, 2020

    Hey. I want to try this. Have never done anything like before. I am hoping to make it a living sculpture with plants like sedum as the body. What are the ratios for body to wings

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