Christmas Tree Kits

How to Assemble Your Christmas Tree Kits 

The first thing you’ll need to do is cut out your Christmas tree template and trace it onto your choice of shelf paper. You can find the template at the end of this document. Trace four trees and cut them out, taking care to leave about an inch or so between them. Although they won’t spread out when fused, you will have some of the branches overlapping the template. I like to cut mine out individually and prep them on a plate like in the image below. This way I can slide them onto the kiln shelf when they’re ready. I flipped up the end of the shelf paper so I can easily grab and pull it.

       

When you prep your glass, it's easiest to nip each sheet in half, then nip each half of that into four long rectangles. You can either shape the ends from there, ot nip them into triangles and then shape them. I like to do the triangle method. Whichever way you decide to do it, you want to wind up with pieces shaped like on the plate on the right.

      

Once you’ve got your pieces ready, it’s time to assemble them on the templates you’ve traced onto your shelf paper. I like to use Glastac Gel to hold them in place. When assembling your trees, try and cover as much inside the template as you can, taking care to have any overhanging pieces pointy and facing the sides, not up and down. This is the fused backs of two trees, so you can see how I laid them out.

Once you’ve got the bottom layer done, you’ll put the second layer over the seams of the first layer. Be sure to cover any “holes” that you see. You can nip fill in pieces of glass to fit, then go back to the second layer. For the cardinals, I like to make sure there are no big cracks or spaces under them. When these are finished, I carefully slide them onto my kiln shelf.

       

These trees take a very light fuse, and if you don’t go too hot, you can smooth out the edges of the clear base squares by popping them in with the trees. CAUTION: If you go too hot, they won’t fit in the bases. For my 16” fiber kiln, on a fiber shelf, I go 350/350/0, 9999/1420/0, 9999/900/60. If you use this schedule, I highly advise either doing a test fuse first, or babysitting your kiln and start peeking once you get near 1400. Even just a few minutes too long will make the edges of the clear squares too thick and ruin the look of your trees.

In the following picture, for the tree on the right, I had originally had a five minute hold at 1420, and I forgot to check them. Compared to the tree on the left, there’s a huge difference in visual quality. So be very attentive when firing these. And adjust the schedule for your kiln.

 

Let cool, then use a soft brush to remove the shelf paper. Let dry. Lay them face down, and have your glue and masking tape ready. I like to use Gorilla Clear grip. If you fused the pieces to smooth the edges, try sliding them into the stands to make sure you didn’t go too hot. If you did, you’ll need to cut replacement pieces and use them instead.

       

I put a small glob on the top end of the clear piece. Arrange it so no more than 5/8” hangs past the bottom. Tape it in place, since pieces can migrate. I remove the tape after several hours. Let them dry for 24 hours.

Once dry, your trees are ready to insert into the stands. You can either glue them into the stands, or if slightly loose, you can wedge something in the slot to prevent the trees from wiggling. I like to glue mine. Enjoy your trees!

You can download a copy of this how-to here.

To purchase the cardinals separately, please contact Vanessa Newmarsh through her Facebook page, Vanessa’s Accessory Glass. Please let her know that Wilderness Glass sent you!