Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Christmas Garlands | DIY Decorating

The first holiday garland idea that I want to share uses handmade felt balls in various colours. The concept is very simple, but the result is unique, homey and festive. It's a great craft to do while watching TV, because the same simple movements are repeated over and over to create the felt balls.

Materials that you'll need
  • A bowl of water
  • Soap (optional but it makes it a bit easier)
  • Thread in a colour of your choice
  • A sewing needle
  • And most importantly, various felt in your choice of colours

First of all, rip a piece of felt off of the piece that you have, and roll it up in a loose ball. 
Dip this ball of felt into a bowl of water, and make sure that it's completely submerged. Adding a bit of soap to the water is also helpful!
Take the ball of felt out of the water, and start rolling it between your hands. Start with light pressure, and then start pressing in on the felt harder and harder as you go along.
After a little while, you'll find a slightly imperfect felt ball between your hands! None of the balls will be the same size or shape, but I think that this makes the garland look unique, and noticeably homemade and cozy.

Once you have the amount of felt balls that you want, in the colours that you want, line them all up in order. This will help to keep them organized into their pattern, and easy to handle. I personally made a pattern of red, white, and green, and made only nine balls in total.
Thread your needle with some thread, and thread through the middle of each felt ball. This should be very easy, because the felt is still soft even if it's wet.

Space the felt balls out across the string, and cut the thread to a desired length. This garland is very festive, and super easy to hang up. Just use an "x" of clear tape on each end, and voila! Your space just got a little bit more Christmas-ready :)

I really, really like this star garland that I made a week or so ago. I don't have any photos of the process, but I though that I'd share it anyway. 

Materials used
  • A pack of little wooden stars (mine was from Michaels)... any shape will do!
  • Acrylic paint
  • Mod Podge
  • Glitter
  • Fairly thin ribbon
  • Glue gun
For this garland, I painted three of the stars red, and three of the stars white. On the last three stars, I painted them with a layer of Mod Podge, and then sprinkled golden glitter over top. 
Once all of the stars have dried, line them up in your desired pattern, and flip them over so that the decorated sides are facing down. You'll want to do this on a protected surface. Using the glue gun, attach each star to the length of ribbon using a dot of hot glue, one by one, and make sure that it sticks down really well. Once it's all dry, you'll have a beautiful, starry garland!

The last garland that I'll share today is definitely the most simple and easy to make. All you need is thread, and some bells. Just simply thread the length of string through each bell. A needle will most likely be useful for this. (Most bells have little built in loop-like things for attaching them to stuff. These come in handy as well!) Tie each bell in place as you go, making sure they're evenly spaced. I would actually recommend embroidery thread rather than sewing thread just because of how fragile this can get. Once you're done, hang it up for an instant festive feel!

I hope you enjoy these three festive garland ideas, I'd love to hear your ideas as well!

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