I will be walking untold miles throughout the day while I’m performing at a 35 acre renaissance festival. I’m thrilled to “people” (with safety precautions) again!
Until the day after a first rehearsal when my legs reminded me how much time I sat around the house in 2020 instead of being active and out and about. Let’s hear it for Epsom salt baths!
A walking (or more like hiking towards the end of the day) stick should help. Let’s make one!
I am playing a mythical creature. Everything I use and wear has to be extra. You can use this tutorial If you are making a walking stick or staff as part of a Halloween costume or if you just want a cool DIY walking stick you can leave the decorations off. Or not. It is all up to you.
You will need:
A small tree branch or pole – I was going to buy this decorative birch pole from the floral department until my father in-law offered up my choice of branches from a honeysuckle that needed trimming. Good thing. Our tree fairy looks like a birch tree!
Small piece of leather (real or fake) or fabric – you can buy small pieces of leather for crafting here
Leather thread or suede cord – you can buy waxed leather thread here
E6000 glue – you can learn more about E6000 here
Heavy duty scissors
2 large eye hand sewing needles
Flower or grapevine garland – you can find a variety of artificial garlands here
Heavy gauge wire
Disclosure: I am including affiliate links for your convenience .
Step by Step How to Make it Tutorial
1. Cut the small tree branch to size if needed or as desired. I left the bark on my staff for visual interest, although the visually interesting texture bothered my hands by the end of the day. I fixed that with Steps 2-6.
Optional: Carefully remove the tree bark with a pocket knife and sand the stick smooth with sandpaper. If you don’t want to decorate your hiking pole, congratulations! You’re done!
2. Determine where on the staff you want to put your leather handle wrap. I walked around a bit and did a few squats while holding my staff (which I do a zillion times a festival day when talking to children) to determine the area I’ll most likely use when handling my staff and marked the area with a piece of chalk.
3. I used a scrap piece of leather that wasn’t a rectangular (or even symmetrical) for my staff grip hoping the interesting shape will contribute to the rustic, ethereal, faerie esthetic look I’m going for.
- For people who like precision: Measure the circumference of the pole and the length of the area you want to cover in leather and cut a piece of leather/pleather/cloth to fit.
For people who want to wing it (raises hand): Dry fit wrap the
walking stick with a piece of leather/pleather/cloth to your liking and
use the heavy duty scissors to cut it to shape.
4. Use the leather punch to make a series of holes on both sides of what will be the leather seam. We will use these holes to sew the leather strap around the hiking pole with cording.
5. Apply a bit of E6000 onto the back of the leather handle for added insurance the grip will not slip as the leather stretches with use and wrap the leather onto the walking stick matching up the the lacing holes at the seam.
6. Cut a length of leather thread or suede cording and use it to thread two leather sewing needles (one needle on each end.) Use the needles and lacing holes to lace the leather handle closed like lacing a shoe. Tie a knot to secure the leather thread and cut any remaining thread ends as desired. Adding a dollop of E6000 to the knot to keep it from coming untied during an inopportune time isn’t a bad idea either.
In hindsight I should have added extra strands of twine to hide the the bright white leather thread better. Oops.
7. I decided to go big or go gnome by decorating my walking stick with a grapevine flower garland. I left part of a branch on my staff so I could use it as a hook for the hanging loop on the end of the garland. I wrapped and arranged the garland around the stick and used floral wire to get an idea of how and where to attach the garland to the stick to my liking.
8. I used 20 gage wire to permanently attach the garland to the walking stick and covered the silver wire as needed/reinforced the garland stress points with the wired faux moss.
9. I made the grapevine handle hand hole by running a length of 20 gage wire inside the center of the grapevine and shaping it to make a handle hole for my hand when I grip the walking stick.
10. Once I was happy with the twisted grapevine decoration, I reinforced the flower stems hot glued to the grapevine with E6000 and Fray Checked the edges of the silk flowers (you can learn about my BFF Fray Check here) to keep them from fraying with us.
Rather buy than DIY a costume, character, or fantasy walking stick? Check out the following options - and more! - below!
Did you enjoy this post? Get more like it by subscribing to the Condo Blues RSS Feed .