Under the maple tree - part 2

by brae  

Continuing work on the maple tree. I added 7 more 22 gauge wires to the skeleton, making a few branches in the middle and on top.  I also bent the trunk to make it more natural.

I mixed and applied Durham's Water Putty to the wire skeleton.  I bought a 4-pound container from Home Depot for roughly $8 back when I did the first tree, and there are still a lot of trees left in the container.  :D  The Durham's Water Putty site shows some of the creative things you can do with it.

You can't put this stuff down the drain, so the cups and brushes you use must be thrown in the trash.  But, I did save the cup to reuse for the duration of the project.  I'll just mix new putty on top of the hardened putty left in the cup.  No sense in wasting multiple cups.  I buy short plastic cups from Dollar Tree.  Very economical.

I mixed two heaping tablespoons of the powder with water to create a mix the consistency (and look) of pancake batter.  The first coat is thin and incomplete.  It's mainly meant to seal the cloth covering on the wires and harden the joints.  I used those super thin 28 gauge wires to avoid having obvious rings around the trunk, and it worked well.

It's amazing how the putty transforms the wire skeleton.  I didn't apply the putty to the roots since those will be buried in the landscaping.

Once this dries, I'll touch up the putty and work on the texture.

Kitty update: little Vi has been adjusting well, running about her new home like a Queen Bee.  :D  So cute!  I miss her, but I am so glad she has a loving home...and I do still get to see her from time to time.


Comment from: Debora [Visitor]
The tree is looking awesome! The putty does transform it! I'm loving this step by step coverage of the process to make the tree :D
05/28/16 @ 12:06
Comment from: Sheila [Visitor]
Wow... amazing tree! Can't wait to see how it looks with the leaves! Glad Vi is adjusting well to her new home. She looks pretty pleased with herself.
05/28/16 @ 14:20
Comment from: Barbara [Visitor]
The tree is looking very sculptural at the moment. I look forward to seeing it "dressed" - your trees are always so well done.
05/28/16 @ 22:19
Comment from: elizabeth s [Visitor]
Your tree is a lot of work Brae but the way it is maturing is a marvelous to see. Even as naked as it is, the form is Wonderful!
05/29/16 @ 04:33
Comment from: Betsy Rogers [Visitor]
Hi Brae! Once you have added the putty to the framework, is it too stiff to adjust the position and shape of the branches? This would mean you have to already know exactly how long each one should be....? Can you add on more pieces once the putty is on...? I am sure you have answered these questions already... It is always fascinating to watch you create! Thank you for sharing your methods and tips!!! One of these days I will pull out the putty I bought..... a long while ago! LOL!
05/29/16 @ 07:27
Comment from: brae [Member]
Thank you! :D Betsy -- I'll answer your questions in the next step. :yes:
05/29/16 @ 08:38

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