Beautiful and Easy, Bird Nest Ornament
This bird's nest ornament is so easy to make and will last many years. I invented this craft when I was thinking about how vines tend to keep their shape after drying. My idea worked like a charm. All you'll need to make this are some vines and two bowls (plus a few tools).
Fresh flowers and herbs decorate this bird's nest ornament. When those fade, I can replace them with more … or use dried plant material. The nest itself will last many, many years.
Here's a little diagram I made to show how I strip leaves off of vines, put the vines in a bowl, then place a second bowl and some weight on top.
I use vines that are about 3.5' in length which I cut from my own property. I remove the leaves, then I soak my vines in a tub of water overnight. Dried vines will be a lot more flexible after soaking.
Fresh vines can be brittle too … soaking helps a lot!
You can make this nest ornament any size. You'll need two bowls, one that is smaller than the other as shown above. These two bowls will make a very small nest.
After 24 hours, I remove my vines from the water bath. Next, I roll my damp vines into coils, around and around. Keep going in the same direction. Tuck in the ends here and there, but it's quite all right to let a few stick out a bit. It will add to the charm.
Push the coil into your larger bowl. This is the tricky part!
You may have to do this a couple times to get the vines to stay put because they are springy. I weighed mine down with marbles. I once held them down with my foot until I could get all my coiling in place!
Once vines are in the larger bowl, place a smaller bowl on top and weigh it down with books or a bottle of water. I decided to use terra cotta bowls this time and speed up the drying process in my food dehydrator. The clay helped "bake" the nest. You can also make a nest in a small colander. The holes will help speed air flow and drying time.
If you are using standard bowls, let your nest dry for several days before un-molding. After you've made a few of these, you'll get better at crafting them and find that they are a lot of fun to pop out of the mold!
They are also a lot of fun to decorate with bits of dried moss (I always use yarrow fronds), herbs and flowers. Don't forget the faux eggs!Just look at the wonderful results … the one on the lower left below is by my Facebook friend Christy Morrow.
If you make my bird's nest craft, I would love to see it! My contact information is on my website here, or you can message me in the comments section below. Visit my blog for more good ideas to help you fly high with your designs and crafts.
By the way, I always wear gloves when working with plant materials. Even non-poisonous plants have been known to cause rashes.Good choices for the vines are honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum) Morning Glory (Convolvulaceae)or my favorite, Virginia Creeper (Perthenocissus quinquefoia). Virginia Creeper is easy to identify with its five leaves.
Never use vines with three leaf clusters as it is likely to be poison ivy. Wear gloves when working with ANY wild plant materials!