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Day 05 #30DaysWild – Making Willow Balls

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

For this project we used the new growth from our weeping willow. These green sticks are really flexible, and are easy to bend without them breaking. We have a few weeping willows on our property, they love our wet ground, and really do grow like weeds, so we have no concerns with cutting twigs from them for crafts.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

We started by stripping off the majority of leaves from our twigs, which were about 3ft long and quite slim.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

And then wove our sticks into little wreaths. The circumference that you want your final ball to be will be governed by the size of your wreaths, so bear that in mind. You can use exactly the same method to make a traditional wreath to hang on your door.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

Once you have 5 or 6 wreaths all the same size you are ready to assemble your ball. Slip one wreath over the other to start building your ball shape. As we planned to hang ours, we did tie our circles together at the top point, to make this stage a little easier. Ours is only tied at that one point, but do whatever works for you.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

Once the rings were all in place we used further lengths of willow to weave in and out of our ball to give it a nice shape, and the look that we wanted. We simply tucked the loose ends in behind other peices of willow, and found that the tension of the sticks held everything together nicely.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

We love the look of the willow balls. You could put little battery tea lights in them, or line them with moss for a fairy to live in. This one is going to be used for something that will be perfect for our #30DaysWild month -  home made bird feeder. Willow is also fabulous for making wreaths, check out our Simple Willow Wreath tutorial for instructions.

 

Willow Balls are really simple to make, and are a lovely rustic ornament that can be used in a number of ways.

If you have enjoyed this craft tutorial, please share it x

 

In this simple tutorial we teach you to make your own rustic willow balls. A fun nature craft for all of the family. They can be used all around the home and garden and make a fabulous decoration. Use them with fairy lights for a magical ornament.

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38 Comments

  • Reply 17 Nature Crafts for Spring - Crafting a Green World

    […] 17. willow ball. Spring is a great time to craft with willow branches, although you can find supple ones all season. […]

    March 15, 2017 at 10:19 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      What a great Spring Nature Craft round-up – thanks for including our willow balls 🙂

      March 19, 2017 at 9:19 am
  • Reply Kellie

    so love this project. In the great out doors discovering and creating.
    Kellie recently posted…The Perfect 3 Ingredient Raspberry JamMy Profile

    June 23, 2016 at 4:49 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      It’s cute isn’t it 🙂 and although we are a long way off from weaving baskets, we feel that we’re learning about what you can do with natural materials 🙂

      June 25, 2016 at 12:29 pm
  • Reply Cheryl | TimeToCraft

    We have a willow in our garden too. They really grow well for us. Always cutting off whips to craft with. Great idea to make balls. #Trash2Treasure

    June 15, 2016 at 10:38 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      They’re beautiful trees – I’d love to do some more stuff with willow 🙂

      June 17, 2016 at 3:59 pm
  • Reply Random Musings

    These look fab, a great addition to any garden and they are much easier to make that I thought they would be 🙂
    Thanks for linking up to #BloggerClubUK 🙂
    Debbie
    Random Musings recently posted…Why I’m Voting Out Of The EUMy Profile

    June 11, 2016 at 4:21 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thanks Debbie, they really are simple to make at this time of year when the willow is so supple. Thanks for having us 🙂

      June 12, 2016 at 7:16 pm
  • Reply Sarah James @ Tales From The Kitchen Shed

    Love these Sarah, your post has come just at the right time. Our outdoor solar lights in twine balls that hang in our willow fedge are looking a bit sorry for themselves. I know what I’ll be making this weekend, thanks for sharing x
    Sarah James @ Tales From The Kitchen Shed recently posted…Elderflower Liqueur RecipeMy Profile

    June 10, 2016 at 3:04 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      They’ll look gorgeous with lights in them – I’ll watch out for photos 🙂

      June 12, 2016 at 7:03 pm
  • Reply Elizabeth

    What a stunning idea! We have willow trees in our garden and my husband just pruned them back – we’ve LOADS of clippings! I need to make some of these! Thanks for the inspiration!
    Elizabeth recently posted…The End of the Road – Cycling through Britain’s Most Northern Isles (Part 2)My Profile

    June 9, 2016 at 8:48 am
  • Reply Mudpie Fridays

    These look brilliant and so simple to make, I would love to grow some willow trees in our garden. Very cool challenge x

    June 8, 2016 at 3:38 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thank you. Willow is a pretty tree, and grows really easily if you have damp ground – you can virtually just plant a stick and it’ll grow 🙂

      June 9, 2016 at 6:25 pm
  • Reply Fashion and Style Police

    Wow this must have kept the kids busy. Love the finished look.

    June 8, 2016 at 9:04 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thank you. The kids quite enjoy making stuff, and my son now has his own penknife so hes quite into cutting bits of sticks and things 🙂

      June 9, 2016 at 6:23 pm
  • Reply Tooting Mama

    They are just simply fabulous, I bet they a going to look fabulous in your home or hanging in the garden. It’s great to get the kids out doing something in the natural world instead of being stuck behind a screen.

    June 8, 2016 at 7:15 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Thank you. I think kids benefit so much for spending time outside, and they love it once they do 🙂

      June 9, 2016 at 6:20 pm
  • Reply Ana De- Jesus

    I have never tried making willow balls but I think they look beautiful. If only I had my own garden.
    Ana De- Jesus recently posted…Stay Unique With Dirty VelvetMy Profile

    June 7, 2016 at 11:47 pm
  • Reply Rhian Westbury

    These have come out so good, I’ve tried making these before but never got them to look like this x
    Rhian Westbury recently posted…What I’ve Been Reading In MayMy Profile

    June 7, 2016 at 9:34 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      Think the trick is to make the rings first, We’d have got in a real mess if we’d just tried to weave lengths straight into a ball 🙂

      June 9, 2016 at 6:17 pm
  • Reply jolene

    wow these are fab.. and how cool to have a few weeping willow trees in the garden ,, they have to be my all time favourite tree.. I don’t have one to make these with .. but the do look really good

    June 7, 2016 at 7:08 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      It is a lovely tree, I think people often weave with hazel sticks too, so you could try them if you come across any 🙂

      June 9, 2016 at 6:13 pm
  • Reply Laura - dear bear and beany

    These look great! I can’t wait until my girls are older and we can make things like this. X
    Laura – dear bear and beany recently posted…Review: The Perfect Party…My Profile

    June 7, 2016 at 6:29 pm
  • Reply Fiona Cambouropoulos

    These look lovely Sarah, I think we could do this with hazel here. I usually use it to make the base for a wildflower headdress but these balls would look lovely as decorations in our fairy gardens. How are the moss sculptures coming on?

    Thank you for sharing a great upcycle idea with me on #Trash2Treasure
    Fiona Cambouropoulos recently posted…Hop into the farm with Bunny JumpMy Profile

    June 7, 2016 at 1:57 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I’m sure hazel would work, and they’d look fab in your fairy gardens. The moss has yellowed, and some of the succulents have turned red so it looks pretty funky! Haven’t made any more yet. Would like to do some animals but haven’t worked out the shape yet. Thanks for having us 🙂

      June 7, 2016 at 6:33 pm
  • Reply Dean of Little Steps

    Would love to try this out, especially since we do have more than a couple of trees in the garden, though I don’t think we have willow trees 🙁
    Dean of Little Steps recently posted…What Our Pets think of our New HomeMy Profile

    June 7, 2016 at 11:40 am
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I think trees like Hazel would work too – they definitely weave it into hurdles and baskets 🙂

      June 7, 2016 at 6:30 pm
  • Reply Mary-the boondocks blog

    They are so beautiful and full of natural goodness.
    Mary-the boondocks blog recently posted…The Lopsided Summer Wreath – Το Μονόπλευρο Kαλοκαιρινό ΣτεφάνιMy Profile

    June 6, 2016 at 3:17 pm
  • Reply Jacki

    A horse sounds totally ambitious! Would love to see pictures of it…
    Jacki recently posted…Jun 4, How to Make a Primitive Angel – diy tutorialMy Profile

    June 6, 2016 at 1:03 pm
  • Reply Jacki

    I love making these – although I don’t have access to the same kind of willow that you’ve used. Mine is much shorter and less flexible but they work anyway. Great to have helpers to photograph!

    June 5, 2016 at 10:10 pm
    • Reply Sarah - Craft Invaders

      I haven’t tried with traditional willow yet, but plan to give it a go soon – would love to get better at it so we can make some willow animal sculptures, we drive passed a garden that has a willow horse in it which looks amazing!

      June 6, 2016 at 12:44 pm

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