Step-by-Step Spindle Dragon Fly
Now that we are on the cusp of gardening season it it timely to share with you how we make Garden Art Dragon Flies out of spindles and scraps. You can make your own, sign up for a ReLoving workshop to paint one that we made or buy our painted versions at our April 7 Vintage Garden Sale.
First of all, search out all your scraps to make wings. We found some very cool rusty metal from an old grate, chicken wire and 1/8 inch plywood. For the bodies we had loads of table and chair spindles we had collected just waiting for a project. The antenna are rom thick wire, like coat hangers.
Cut the spindles in half with a table saw. You don’t have to, but this will be the body and you want a flat side so you can hang it flush to the wall.
Make a template for the wings. It is about proportion here. You may be comfortable eye-balling the size and shape or you may have to Google “dragon fly outline’ or something similar and even go to Staples and blow it up to the size you want. In this picture we give you a glimpse of both our wood wings and the decorative metal version.
Trace the wing shapes out on the material you will use and cut the shape out with a jig saw.
Using glue and a nail gun (or small screws) attach the wings to the body.
Drill tiny holes in the ‘head’ of the body for the antennas and fill with glue. We use Weldbond brand. Cut the wire to the appropriate length and push into holes. Allow to dry.
Now you are ready to decorate (or leave the patina of vintage/reclaimed).
In this example we have decoupaged the wings. Something you can do if you take our workshop. We are going to add beads to the antennas and curl the ends then paint and ‘distress’ the body. On some, we will also add an antique key dangling off the bottom/tail – attaching with an eyelet. Before placing outside we will coat this dragon fly with several coats of outdoor varnish that has UV protection to protect the decoupaged papers. This is not necessary if you have just painted your dragon fly if you have used our Country Chic or Fusion Paints as they are indoor/outdoor.
At ReLoving, we paint every day and we like to share with you what we learn along the way.
Kari & Jim
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