Already over two years ago, I posted an instructable on how to make a tree of life pendant. Since then I've made quite a few similar pendants, slightly different every time. They always make for a great last-minute gift ; ).
When I saw a tree of life dream catcher, I really wanted to make one myself, so I wanted to look up a few pictures. I most certainly found a few dream catcher pictures, but I also saw a ring that incorporated a tree of life in the design, absolutely amazing. So, my plans of making a dream catcher had to make way for this intriguing project : ).
It turned out great, I love the way it looks, and I hope you'll like it as well!
Step 1: Materials
To make a tree of life ring, you will need:
- a mandrel
- a ruler
- green beads
- wire, gauge 21/ 0,81 mm and gauge 26/ 0,46 mm
Step 2: Bending the Base
Before cutting the parts of wire to bend, it's time for a few calculations.
1. Measure the diameter of the top of your mandrel or the round object you're using. Divide it by 2 and multiply it with pi. This is the length of wire that you'll need for the semi circle.
2. Next you'll need to know the circumference of your finger. A simple technique you can use is this one.
Take this value, subtract the diameter of your mandrel and multiply it with 2.
Add the value of calculation 1 to the value of calculation 2. Add a few centimeters to be sure your wire is long enough and cut two pieces of this length.
Bend the middle of one of the pieces around the top of the mandrel as shown. Bend the wires straight again to create the semi circle you'll need. Repeat this for the other piece of wire.
Step 3: Shape It
Once you're sure both pieces align perfectly, bend them around the mandrel. You may need to bend the ends a bit further using the pliers, this will definitely help to get the roundness you want.
Step 4: A Bit of Cutting
As you can see, at this moment there are four layers of wire for the ring base itself, but you'll only need three. Cut one of the wires at the back of the ring in both halves of the ring, as shown in the pictures.
Step 5: Just to Check
Make sure the short ends (the ones you just cut off) are on the outside of the ring, so when you align them it looks like the picture shown here.
Step 6: Wrap It Up
Cut off a piece of the gauge 26 / 0,46 mm wire and wrap the middle of it around the back of the ring, the place where both short wires end. This means you'll only need to wrap it around the two middle wires here.
Wrap one of the sides of the wire around the three base wires on its side, the other side around the three base wires on the other side. This will keep the two halves of the ring base from shifting in relation to each other.
Step 7: Ending the Wire
Once you've reached the end of one of the sides, cut off the wrapping wire in the middle of the base wires of the ring. Use a pair of pliers to pinch the end of the wire between the two base wires.
Step 8: On the Other Side
The same goes for the other side of the pendant: wrap until you reach the end (or the front, depends on how you look at it) and end the wire between the base wires.
Step 9: The Completed Base
At this point, the base ring is completed. Take a look at your hard work, try it on, admire it : )
Step 10: Tree Time
Now, time to start making that tree. Cut off eight pieces of wire that are approximately the same length, about ten centimeters/ 4 inches should be enough.
Step 11: Starting Small
Take three of the wires and bundle them together in the middle by wrapping them around each other. This will be the trunk of the tree.
Step 12: Building Up
Wrap the other five pieces of wire around the trunk part you just started. It might look a bit weird at first, but don't worry, the more wires you add the better it becomes.
Step 13: The Roots
Spread out the wires underneath the trunk and bundle them in pairs. These pairs will be your tree roots. Twist them a bit to keep them together nicely.
Step 14: Adding the Tree
Before moving on to the branches, it's time to add the tree to the ring base. Place the tree on top of the circle and position it the way you like. If your trunk is a bit too long, don't worry, it's easy to fix that when making the branches in the next step.
Wrap the roots around the bottom half of the circle to secure it. Cut off the ends and clamp them down using pliers to prevent any wire from poking out.
Step 15: Leaves
Spread the wires on the top of the trunk to create the branches. You can also unwrap a bit of the trunk if they are not positioned the way you want the to. Add the beads to the branches to create leaves. Once you're happy with the way the tree looks, wrap the ends of the branches around the top of the ring to secure them.
I ended up only using six of the eight wires for the branches, otherwise it would have been too crowded. Next step shows how to work away those wires if you have this same problem.
Step 16: Working Away the Wire
To get rid of the two wires still sticking out right now, just pull them through the branches as shown, cut of the end and clamp down the wire as close to the tree as possible, since you don't want any loose ends.
Step 17: All Done
And that's it! I hope you liked it and maybe will give this project a try yourself, I'd love to see your result if you do : )