Introduction: Tiny Twig Pots

If you've ever felt like standard pots are too big, this post is for you. Sometimes you just want a single serving size pot for a nice looking twig. Fortunately, they're super quick to turn and finish.

Tools and Supplies

  • Stock of at least 6/4 thickness
  • A lathe
  • A hand saw, band saw, or table saw
  • Drill
  • Sand paper

Step 1: Cut and Mark Your Blanks

This step basically all comes down to how big of a twig you'd like to accomodate, and the size of offcuts you have lying around the shop. In my case, all of my blanks were 6/4 stock (walnut, maple, and cherry).

Cut your blanks to lengths between 5 and 7 inches. Square stock isn't an absolute requirement, but it will definitely make turning easier down the line.

After you've cut your blanks to length, mark their centers by drawing a line between two opposite corners (making an X). In the center of the X (on both ends of teh blank), pound a mark with the spur center of your lathe.

Step 2: Plan Your Pot Shape

Turn your blank into a cylinder.

Draw our the shape you'd like your pot to take (I tried a couple drifferent shapes) and mark the edges on your blank.

Step 3: Turn the Shape of Your Pot

In this step, try to get the finish as smooth as possible. You can always sand out imperfections, but a smooth finish straight off the chisel will save a ton of time.

Before you remove the pot form the lathe, make sure to mark a line at the base of the pot (where you'll cut off the butt of the pot). This will give you a good straight line to follow.

Step 4: Cut Off the Butts.

You don't need em anymore. Cut the butts of your pots off on the base line that you marked before removing them from the lathe.

Step 5: Drill the Cavity

Obviously, this isn't ideal -- if you have a drill chuck for you lathe, definitely use it. If not, do what I did.

Use a drill with a bit about an 1/4 inch smaller than the diameter of the mouth. Not ideal, but if you take it slow, you'll get better at keeping it straight with every pot.

Step 6: Add a Fillet to the Mouth of the Pot

Just a nice asthetic detail, but it adds a lot to how it feels in the hand (if you put these on your dining table, people will absolutely pick them up).

Yet another place where a drill chuck would be useful, but you can always do this with a drill press and a router bit (or a drill).

Step 7: Add Twigs and Enjoy

Experiment with different shapes and sizes. There's definitely no need for these to be consistent or perfect. They're a lot of fun to build and they make funny little gifts.

Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Pocket-Sized Speed Challenge