Cut Along the Penciled Roof Guidelines: Using an exacto knife or bench knife, cut along the penciled guidelines to remove the stem area from the gourd. Because smaller dried craft gourds tend to have thin walls work your cuts starting at the corner of the pencil line and pulling the blade away from that corner towards the second corner of the line. Cut all of the lines with one, shallow, light pressured cut to score the roof line. Repeat the shallow cuts until the blade cuts through the gourd walls.
Nest egg gourds, with their 1/8″ or less thick walls, easily crack during the roof cutting step. If this happens continue cutting the roof free from the gourd. You can repair the cracked area using an application of hot glue on the inside of the gourd once the roof is free.
I prefer to use a wood carving bench knife instead of a craft, utility, or exacto-styled knife. The bench knife has a strong, thin blade that is perfect for fine cut lines.
Remove the Roof Area: Once the knife blade has opened the roof guidelines, remove the stem area and set aside. You can use this piece later in the project to create a porch roof for your Bee House. Remove the seed pod fibers and seed from the gourd, set these aside to plant in your garden next year.
Sand the Roof Line Cut: Lay one side of the roof line onto 220-grit sandpaper. Gently move the gourd across the sandpaper to flatten the edge of the cut. This sanding will also flatten a small area along the bottom, straight-edge of the roof – the connecting line between the two sides of the roof line. Sanding the roof line sides allows your paper roof to flat.
Making a Seed House: If you are using your Bee House as a Holiday Gift add a little something special by filling the inside of your bottle or nest egg gourd with garden seeds. Your finished House can be used during the fall and winter as a holiday decoration. When spring arrives your family or friends can remove the roof and plant your second special gift in their garden.
In my photo sample below I have added two Red Oak acorns, one package of Nasturtium flower seeds, and the nest egg seeds that came from the gourd. This gives my friend a fun Christmas tree ornament now and a full flower bed of bright color next spring, two trees for the future, and enough gourd seeds they can make their own Bee Houses next fall.
Hot Glue the Scrapbook Paper Roof: Apply hot glue along one side of the gourd’s roof line. Center the scored fold of the roof paper to the top center points of the gourd’s roof cut. Press one side of the roof against the hot glue to set into place.