How to make cool things out of matches

Written by patti perry
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How to make cool things out of matches
Use wooden matchsticks to fabricate many shapes and build with them. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Wooden matchsticks make good miniature building components for many small projects. Because of their uniform straight shape, they can be used wherever a continuous length of petite wood is necessary. Wooden matches can be used with burnt and blackened ends, or painted. You may cut off their phosphorus heads to give them a straight surface, which might prove beneficial for assembly. Start making some simple shapes with wooden matches as building blocks and see where your imagination leads you.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • CD case
  • All purpose glue
  • Toothpicks
  • Razor blade knife

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place a CD case on your table to act as a small work space. Building on this surface will allow you to turn your creation around in front of you, without any need to move the matches.

  2. 2

    Lay eight wooden matches on this surface, parallel to each other and with the heads in the same direction.

  3. 3

    Spread a thin line of glue on top of each matchstick. Use a toothpick to help you apply the glue.

  4. 4

    Arrange eight more matches perpendicular to the first layer and on top of the glued matches. This square shape becomes a basic building block for matchstick construction.

  5. 5

    Cut a notch in the flat end of two matchsticks by cutting a small slice halfway through the stick.

  6. 6

    Slit up two millimetres from this same end to remove the small piece of wood and form a notch.

  7. 7

    Squeeze one dab of glue on this indented area and place the two sticks together to form a shiplap joint. Make a square using this method of joinery.

  8. 8

    Adjust three matchsticks to form a triangle using this ship-lapped technique.

  9. 9

    Combine these elements to create many shapes; connect them to realise the varied potential in this simple construction process.

Tips and warnings

  • Paint some or all of your matchsticks to create patterns.

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