My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

Weaving a bird

Bird woven from shaved wood

I wove my bird from Kyogi (shaved wood) paper

Cut the Kyogi paper into two strips

Cut two wood strips of equal size. Split each strip into 4 strips leaving the last 10cm uncut.

Cut the wing tips into the shaved wood

Cut a tiered pattern into the uncut strips for the wings

Start weaving the wings

Start weaving the wing. Fold the first strip down at a 90 degree angle. Weave over and under the rest of the strips. Take the second strip and bend it again at a 90 degree angle and weave it under and over the strips starting a weaving pattern. Do the same with the other side of the wing, only in mirror image.

Weave the upper body

Continue the weaving pattern and tighten the weave.

Flip around and weave the belly

Flip the wings over (fold side facing up) to start weaving the body. Take the top two strips (closest to the folds) and place the left strip over the right strip.

Continue weaving

Take the bottom inside strips and start the weaving pattern.

Done with the body

Add the two strips that is left on the top and the two strips at the bottom and continue weaving.

Under the wings

This is the hardest part for me because I seem to do it differently every time I make one of these. Basically you want to close up the sections under the wing. The 4 strips pointing up gets woven to the top to create the head and the 4 strips pointing down becomes the tail.

Head and tail strips

Continue the weave pattern. Two strips on each side will neatly tuck through the hole and two strips will remain over the last weave.

Knot the tail

Knot the 4 strips at the tail end.

Curl the tail

You can cut the ends short, into a v or for a more dramatic bird curl it.

Knot the head

Knot the top 4 strips to create the head.

Cut the beak

Cut a v into the strips to create a beak.

deviate from tradition and add an eye

I like to add an eye by opening the strip and placing a rolled strip of paper into the cavity. I cut a flatter strip for the other side and glue it on.

Every week I add a new design with related tutorials. Be sure to subscribe to receive an email notification with design inspiration.


8 June 2011 Foliage Weaving

For this tutorial I focus on a simple weave pattern that does not require you to soften or prepare the leaves to be more durable or flexible. This is the starting point in...

21 July 2011 Weaving a fan basket

Dark and dramatic burgundy lilies are tucked in low to line a fan shaped basket that unravels into an unruly nest

5 January 2011 Palm leaf Hopper-flies (grasshoppers and butterflies)

Weave grasshoppers or butterflies (or fireflies) from palm leaves

Related Designs

2 April 2011 Easter Parade Demonstration and Accessory Workshop

Advanced level Workshop: For my Easter Parade Demonstration I made 6 hand-tied designs within armatures. The concept was to pick up the design while demonstrating and to literally...

12 July 2011 Blown Away

Kyogi Paper and Phalaenopsis Orchids Blown Away in the wind

21 July 2011 Tradition and Technique, Technique and Tradition

When you need inspiration for a design problem study a Traditional Craft- you will be amazed!

7 April 2011 Weaving with Flax

Here are a few more examples of woven flax. I also use Typha, palm, iris leaves, Kyogi paper, boat orchid leaves and aspidistra to weave with.

12 April 2011 "On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... two turtle doves"

Flax Christmas tree "cake" for the Floral Trends Design Group end of the year function.

20 December 2011 Our finest gifts we bring,

A small, all natural gift box woven from palm

20 January 2016 A lots of stuff and things

Sticks and twigs create a resting spot for palm and rose butterflies

15 June 2016 One tug

Weave willow bark strips into a nest and weave a bird from flax

12 October 2016 I found it this way: Bird nest design

This was the fourth design I did in my "I found it this way" floral art demonstration