Twig railings add to a rustic décor. They are used often in ranch and log cabin style settings. Western décor often takes advantage of a twig railing on porches and decks. Twig railings can bring out the imagination in anyone who wants to spend a little time being creative. Start by collecting twigs and small branches from the trees in your yard. Find a dry place in which to store them until you are ready to start building the twig railing.
Preparing the Cross Pieces for One Section of Railing
Use the builder's square to draw a straight line along one side of each of the 6-foot-long posts. Drill ¾-inch diameter holes 6 inches apart and 1 inch deep (to allow for movement and placement of twigs) along the line on each pole. Make sure that the holes are in the same places on each pole, so that the main twigs will line up straight. Between these holes, drill different sized holes, 1 inch deep, equally distanced apart, ranging from ¼ inch in diameter up to ½ inch in diameter.
Use the hole saw (a saw-toothed drill bit made for drilling large holes) to drill 2-inch diameter holes 6 inches from the top and 6 inches from the bottom of each 3-foot post.
Slide the ends of the 6-foot-long posts halfway inside the 2-inch holes on the 3-foot posts, forming one section. This will leave the other halves of the holes open for the next section. If you are building only one section, slide the 6-foot posts all the way in, and leave 4 inches protruding. Lock the 3-foot posts in place by hammering shims with a rubber mallet in between the spaces of the posts.
Arranging the Twigs
Use twigs that are ¾ inch in diameter and reasonably straight to place in the ¾-inch holes across the length of the top and bottom 6-foot posts. Use the depth of the holes to maneuver the twigs into the holes.
Use different sized and shaped twigs to place in the remaining holes, crisscrossing twigs and fitting them in the holes from the top post to the bottom post. Use the depth of each hole to help work in the twigs.
To make other sections, use one of the 3-foot posts to connect the next two 6-foot posts. Use shims to tighten the posts together.