Ming trees are artificial recreations of miniature bonsai trees. Typically no more than 1 foot tall, true bonsai trees often have branches that grow flat across the top of the tree. Despite their size, they look very old, which is part of the appeal that makes them so valuable to collectors. Making your own wire Ming trees can capture some of the appeal of the real thing without costing nearly as much.
Things You'll Need
- 70 yards of 24-gauge jewelry wire
- Wire cutters
- Beads (small and large)
- Wooden base
- Staple gun
- Dried moss
- White glue
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Creating Your Tree
Cut the wire with the wire-cutters into workable pieces about 15 inches long. Prepare about 110 pieces for a thick tree.
Pass one end of the wire through three small beads or one large one. Repeat this process for each strip of wire. Center the beads at a mid-point on the wire. Bring the ends of the wires together and twist just below the beads to secure them. Keep twisting the wire for about 1/2 inch below the beads.
Twist two beaded wires together just below the first twist you made to secure the beads on the first wire you prepared. Make this twist about 1/2 inch long. This is your first branch.
Make another branch by twisting together two more beaded wires. Add this to the first set of beaded wires and attach in the same way by twisting them around just below where the last two wires connect. Make longer twists as you move toward the ends of the wire. Repeat this procedure until you have eight branches, each with one to three beads, depending upon what size you are using.
Repeat steps 3 and 4 to create two more clusters of eight branches each. Twist these all together to form the trunk. Leave at least 2 inches of wire at the ends to form the roots.
Unravel the ends of the wire and spread them out around the foot of the tree. Stand the tree on the wooden base and bend it to a position you like. Staple the roots to the base as close to the foot of the tree as possible. Glue dried moss over the roots.