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5 May 2017

A handmade walking stick


A little bit of a different sort of craft on the blog today. I thought I would share how Mark and I (well mostly Mark I won't lie) made a beautiful wooden walking stick out of a Hazel branch...





So when one has one's VERY OWN WOODS yep, I'm bragging, lol! But it's not quite sunk in yet, and it's not even my woods.... But yes, when you have your own woods you can do whatever you like with it, and if what you like is to cut down some trees and branches, well you just can.

Obviously if you wish to make your own walking stick and you haven't got your own trees to chop. seek permission first!



A large part of the woodland is covered in Hazel trees. Turns out Hazel branches grow really long and straight ish, perfect for poles and sticks. When we visited the woods last Mark was keen to chop a load of Hazel to make bean poles for the allotment.  But whilst chopping the bean poles he also suggested we chop a branch to make me a walking stick.



Here's some tools we used to chop down the Hazel. Mark used the handsaw and cut down the large branches, then I used the snippety things (technical term) to snip off the smaller branches and twigs from the finished poles.  Great team work!


Our stick haul...


Look at them, so pretty and perfect.


So the first step in making your walking stick is to get the bark off.  Mark enjoys any jobs which involve getting out his knife collection. Eek, he does have rather a lot of very scary looking sharp knives and saws etc, I hadn't realised this... gulp.... better stay on his good side, huh! hehe.


So slice off the outer bark to reveal the lovely wood underneath.

Then Mark carved away at one end to make it nice and rounded.


The little nobbly bits where further branches stuck out from were carved down as well so relatively flat.  I wanted my stick to look 'rustic' and have a few bends and nobbles left though.

I may be holding onto the stick here for illustrative purposes but I can assure you this is the nearest I went to that knife! (big wuss!)


Next Mark sawed a length off the stick so it was a little smaller and at the right height for me.
He produces yet another saw for this task...


Next the sanding stage.  Mark sanded down the entire stick to make it all lovely and smooth. Simply using regular sand paper for this task.  I believe this was in a multi-pack from Wilko.


The next step is to taper the end of the stick and secure on a metal pointy bit (It may have a technical name but metal pointy bit will suffice for me).  These little metal walking stick ends were purchased on Ebay.

Mark shaped the end so it would fit, carefully measuring the metal bit on as he went.  Then to secure in place there are two tiny nails at either side, just to hammer in.


The next stage is to varnish your walking stick.  We used a clear satin outdoor varnish from Wilko, which was relatively inexpensive for a small tin.  We also used a paintbrush from Poundland for this job.


The next stage Mark drilled a hole right through near to the top of my stick and threaded through a cord.  Mark's stick has a leather cord but as he knows I don't wear leather he plaited up some white string for my handle.


Here's me posing with my beautiful new walking stick by our river... It sure is handy in the woods because there aren't really many proper paths, and there are a few edges, and steep bits and deep crossings to navigate. Having the walking stick to hold onto makes these types of things a little easier.

I can't imagine doing any countryside walking without it now! Am I officially an old person with my stick? lol...


Here's my stick posing next to a tree...



3 comments:

  1. Nice stick , nice little green bag too 😊Xxx

    ReplyDelete
  2. how beautiful, what an incredible thing to own! x

    ReplyDelete

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