How to Treat Tree Bark for Crafts
Many people think that tree barks are vulnerable and that’s why not so important to preserve them. But with time people have realized a great deal that even though tree bark has a loose connection with trees, they work tremendously in crafting décor and enhancing beauty too. Thus it has become important to preserve them.
But as barks are not as strong as wood they need some extra treatment. You might ask how to treat tree bark for crafts since they come with less stability. Therefore, we come to tell you some effective ways so you can take great care of your tree bark in order to make crafts out of them.
Cleaning the Tree Bark Properly
Cleaning is the prominent way to treat your tree bark really properly. Cleaning is important because tree bark is not without dirt and insects within it. To make the tree bark work for crafts you need to preserve them after giving them a proper wash.
There are many ways to clean tree bark. But not all of them are going to serve the proper service. You need to be careful and proceed following the right steps. No worries because we’re going to lead you to the right path regarding this fact.
Step 1: Cut Off Extra Branches
This step requires some basic materials and these are not hard to get as well. Cut off branches from the wood piece with a hand saw. A hand saw will carefully trim the branches without doing any harm to your wood bark.
For bigger wood pieces with bark, you can first decide the size and then make it into pieces. After that go for the job of cutting off branches. This will make your hard work easy. However, you can treat your tree branches properly as well for they are pretty good material for crafting too.
Step 2: Make the Wood Pieces with Bark Dry
After you cut the branches, you need to make sure the wood pieces with bark are dry enough. Because woods are porous, dampness or wetness is common in their texture. Also, they absorb water from rain or dew easily. That’s why it is important to make these pieces dry so the wetness or damp texture leaves off as much as possible.
The drying process is also long. So, you need to take this into your consideration. Normally, you might have to wait from six months to a year to make the wood pieces with bark dry. If you have empty space in your garage, that will do for the pieces can have more space for drying and speed up their drying formula.
One of our articles – How To Preserve Tree Branches With Bark For Decoration.
Step 3: Reduce Moisture Level from the Tree Bark
No matter if you are treating normal tree bark or cleaning tree birch bark for crafts, the process should be almost the same. And moisture in the wood helps to warp or pull away bark from it, we need to reduce the level of moisture from the tree bark.
This process has unique ways to be fulfilled. You can bake your wood to get the level of moisture lower. One significant advantage of this process is it kills and gets rid of insects and infestation from wood too. You’ve got to put your wood in your oven for over an hour.
Also, check the process after every 15 minutes so they don’t get burned. For bigger branches, it might take a little bit more time – almost 2 or 3 hours. If the moisture level of your wood gets down to at least 12 percent that would be a great achievement.
N.B: It’s important for you to learn that many experts do not allow baking for peeling barks. People sometimes use these barks for crafting like making lanterns or other things. If you see your peeling bark is just alright and dry, avoid baking them. Then again, if you see these peeling barks a little wet, you can think of baking them in a low setting of the oven.
Step 4: Adopt a Different Setting for your Huge Log
You need to adopt a different process and setting if you have a huge log instead of some wood pieces. As these logs come with more dirt and insects. In this case, first, you need to log in to a solution. To make the solution bring a gallon of water and bleach almost 1 or 2 cups and then mix them properly.
Keep the log in the solution for at least a day. In this time period, all the bacteria and insects of the log will be abolished. After one full day, pull out the log from the solution and let it soak in clear water for another 2 days so the bleach gets washed away from the log.
You need to keep changing the water continuously during these two days as it is important. Otherwise, you cannot fully remove the extra bleach from the bark. Then you need to keep the log in an open space to let it dry properly.
Step 5: Give a Deep Cleaning of the Bark
Now it’s time for giving a deep cleaning to the bark. For this step grab damp cotton and a paintbrush. You should not wet the bark too much. Just wipe the wood with damp cotton to make it wet. And then with the paintbrush provide slight strokes to make the pieces clean.
One warning for you is that you should think twice before you adopt canned air for the deep cleaning process. Because it tends to lose the bits of bark and make them fall easily, avoiding the process is very much appreciable.
Use Wood Chemicals for Better Treatment:
Step 6: Brush Wood Hardener
The next job is to bring a quality wood hardener. The significance of the hardener is it will help the bark to stick to the wood more powerfully. Also, it prevents wood from rotting too easily. Bring a paintbrush and apply the wood hardener to the log or wood pieces properly.
After the application of the wood hardener, let the wood pieces or log take a rest so it dries also. When the hardener turns into a plastic-like texture from a wet texture, you will learn that the wood pieces have dried and are ready for the next step for execution.
Also, if you think that a double coating will reinforce your wood, go for it. For logs, it is better if you put another coating or a third coating.
Step 7: Brush a Protective Coat
As barks of wood are not so solid and get cracked easily, you need to provide extra protection to the barks. For this reason, you need to adopt a protective coat. A water-based poly coat performs really well on wood barks and helps them to avoid warping, shrinking, or swelling.
A clear and water-based poly coat is a chemical and that’s why many people might want to avoid using any chemical on wood. For them, we suggest tug toil to use. It is also a protective coat and works very effectively. A total of three coatings is enough. Make sure the wood pieces are cured completely after each coating. It’s a long-term process, so you need to bear with it.
However, you might have to wait a little longer as an oil-based coating takes more time to dry. But it’s totally worth it. And once the wood pieces with bark are totally and completely dry, they are safe. You can now use them for crafting as well.
Other Alternatives: Instead of using a poly coat or tug oil, you can use epoxy, varnish, or other any clear coat to seal your bark to wood. Among them, epoxy will provide you with the strongest reinforcement as it comes with tremendous adhering agents.
Step 8: Store Your Wood Bark
As we have already mentioned how to preserve tree bark for crafts, you need to also make sure that you are keeping or storing your wood bark in a proper place. First thing first, do not store them in a damp place.
Wood is prone to absorb moisture and this moisture will ruin the solidifying texture of the chemicals that you have applied to them. That’s why you need to place the extra tree bark in a dry space for indoor use later. Also, don’t force them to fit in a little place. Arrange a spacious place so they can breathe and don’t get cracked or damaged.
And you are all done with it. Now you can bring bark from your storehouse and show your passion for crafting as much as you want.
See Also How To Keep Birch Bark From Peeling.
How to preserve tree branches with bark for decoration?
To preserve or treat tree branches with bark for decoration you need to clean the branches properly and give them a proper wash with paraffin wax. You need to melt the wax beforehand. To seal the bark with the branch, use a clear sealant or oil-based sealant.
How do you stabilize wood bark?
Wood barks look so beautiful as decoration pieces, but they are so fragile. For this, you need a proper chemical that has strong adhering elements. Many experts suggest epoxy to overcome the situation. Epoxy resin works like magic and stabilizes your wood bark to the greatest extent.
Why would I want to treat tree bark for crafts?
Treating tree bark for crafts is a great way to create unique and natural elements for your DIY projects. The treated bark can be used for a variety of crafts, such as picture frames, coasters, and wall art.
How do I treat tree bark for crafts?
There are several methods you can use to treat tree bark for crafts. One method is to soak the bark in a solution of water and bleach, which will remove any dirt and debris and brighten the color of the bark. Another method is to soak the bark in a solution of water and glycerin, which will help to preserve the bark and prevent it from drying out and cracking.
What kind of tree bark is best for crafts?
Any type of tree bark can be used for crafts, but some types of bark, such as birch bark or grapevine bark, may be more popular for their unique texture and color.
How long does it take to treat tree bark for crafts?
The time it takes to treat tree bark for crafts will depend on the method used and the thickness of the bark. Soaking the bark in a solution of water and bleach may take several hours or overnight, while soaking the bark in a solution of water and glycerin may take several days.
How should I store treated tree bark for crafts?
Treated tree bark should be stored in a cool, dry place to prevent mold or mildew from forming. It is best to store the bark in a sealed container or plastic bag to keep it clean and prevent it from getting damaged.
What are some ideas for using treated tree bark in crafts?
Treated tree bark can be used for a variety of crafts, such as picture frames, coasters, and wall art. You can also use the bark to create natural elements for wreaths, garlands, and other decorative arrangements.