Willow furniture is a variety of a broader classification of woodworking, called twig furniture. Willow is well-suited to furniture building because it grows rapidly. Different species of willow may have different qualities of wood. For example, river willow tends to be a bit brittle, but weeping willow is flexible enough to weave. Bark is easily peeled from willow when the sap rises in the spring. Follow some steps to make a basic camp table from willow branches.
Cut four willow poles 36 inches long, about the circumference of a man's wrist. Measure 18 inches from one end on each, and mark. Drill a hole through the centre of each at the mark. Secure with a metal bolt or a wooden peg, creating two X's. In a pinch, you can secure the sticks using twine or peeled strips of bark.
Cut two 24-inch poles, with similar circumference to the first four. Place the two X's you have just made on the ground. Place a 24-inch pole across the face of the top of one X. Drill through the ends of the pole into the ends of the X. Secure using bolts or pegs. Again, if drilling and inserting bolts or pegs is not an option, string or peeled bark will work to hold the poles in place.
Cut three 36-inch poles about same size as the circumference of a man's wrist. Place the end of one pole on top of the 24-inch pole, where it is attached to the X. Secure by wrapping with string or peeled bark. Attach the other end in similar manner to the opposite X. Repeat on the other side. You should now have two X brace leg structures, with the side rails for a table top. Use the third pole to brace the structure by placing it in the bottom of the top V of the X, and wrapping securely with string or bark.
Cut enough 28-inch twigs (about finger size or thumb size) to cover the top of the two side rails. These may be placed close together or spaced a little bit apart from each other. Secure by weaving string or bark around the side rails and over the ends of the twigs.
Weave flexible twigs or strips of bark through the table top twigs, if desired, creating a wicker-like effect.
Check the table for wobbles. Use additional string or added twig braces if necessary.
Things you need
- Willow poles
- Willow twigs
- Pruning saw
- Long-handled platform pruners
- Tape measure
- Carpenter's pencil or black marker