There is nothing like a bit of homemade decoration, so when an early winter storm tipped over an old dead tree in the garden, I seized the opportunity to take some branches and make something out of it. In this instructable I will go through the process of making a wooden deer.
Materials and tools:
Dremel (You can just use sandpaper, but it's easier with a Dremel)
Hot glue gun
And last but perhaps most important; some wood to make it from.
Step 1: Getting Started
Find some branches of different sizes. I think the tree I got mine from was some kind of hawthorn, but anything should do. The precise measurement doesn't matter, It's all up to how you want your deer to look. Start by de-barking the branches. I liked the look of leaving a bit of the inner bark on, but you should do it as you want it or as the wood allows it.
Saw a body, a neck, and a head. Choose the size of branches you find to look proportionally good. And now you are off to a good start.
Step 2: A Bit of Legwork
Now you need some branches to use as legs. I choose some that were similar in size to the neck, but as long as your legs are equal in size, it should look good.
Also cut a tail. I used a smaller branch and cut it at an angle, so it will point backwards when attached to the body.
Step 3: The Antlers
For the antlers you simply find some branching sticks. I took off the loose bark but kept on the inner bark to give a rough look. Preferably find two antlers that look similar in size and structure.
Step 4: Getting Ready for Assembly 1
Dry fit the neck to the head and make a mark where you want it. Repeat the same with the neck and the body. Now use a small drill to drill a little hole on all of the marks. This was you can put a piece of metal wire in the holes, so the hotglue can hold it better. But don't glue it yet.
Step 5: Getting Ready for Assembly 2
Fit the legs and make holes in the same way as with the neck, body, and head. If you want a better fit, you can use a Dremel or sandpaper to adjust the legs and make it connect better.
You can use pipe cleaners to assist you in this dry fitting process, that will keep the legs in place so you can get an idea of how it'll look.
Step 6: Adjusting and Dry Fitting
You can saw or sand a bit off the legs if they are uneven. Drill two holes for the antlers. The size of the drill should match the size of the antlers.
Again pipe cleaners can help you with the dry fitting.
Step 7: Coming Together
Now it is time for assembly. Cut small metal wires for the holes, and simply use those along with hot glue to put the deer together. It can be a good idea to mark the legs, so you know which legs go where.
I used wood glue for the antlers and the tail because I didn't use metal wire to connect those.
Step 8: Off to Mass Production
Now you made yourself a wooden deer, and you are ready to make your next one. You can try different sizes and proportions, and make the perfect deer.
I hope you liked this Instructable. Feedback is welcome :)