Thursday, December 19, 2013

DIY Fresh Garland!

 DIY Fresh Garland

Our mantel is up and looking beautiful.  However, not even 3 days old and it was begging for some garland!  Do you know how hard it is to find decent garland basically a week before Christmas? Nearly impossible!  Finally, I gave in and bought some of the cheap plastic looking garland.  Not feeling too happy with my purchase, I gave it one last ditch effort and headed over to Home Depot to see if they had any live garland.  None.  THEN I noticed two shopping carts full of Christmas Tree branches and asked the man working the tree stand if I could buy the branches.  This is where it gets really exciting!  He said I could have whatever I wanted for free!  I don't know if this is a secret I just came upon but, every day any branch that is trimed off a tree is put in a pile and thrown out at the end of the day!  I loaded up my car with two shopping carts FULL of branches and drove home a happy girl. .. BTW you only need a few branches.  Two shopping carts was a little over kill.  But it was frrreeeeee :) !!

Making the garland is SO easy and although you will have to buy a few things the cost is like $10.00 for 50 feet of garland.  BEST DEAL OF THE YEAR!

Here is what you will need.. 
Green floral wire  - I found it at Lowe's for around $2.00
Dark brown jute 3/8" Rope - it is the color of tree bark also found at Lowe's for around $8.00
Tree pruners
Old scissors or something to cut the wire.   

Here is how I made my garland..

Cut as many branches as you think you will need into pieces 12-18 inches long pieces.  
You may also need to trim the width a little.  An 8 inch fan is good, anything wider is probably too big.  There were two different verities of Christmas tree branches so I used both verities.  I also added in some citrus branches and olive tree branches from my yard.  I love all the different textures.  You can add what every you think might look good.  Juniper would be beautiful too. FYI the citrus branches stay green but dry out quicker. 

Measure how long you want your garland to be.  Cut the rope 10-16 inches shorter than what the finished length of the garland will be.

 Make a slip knot with the wire.

Pull it tight and wrap the end 3 or 4 times 

I worked from the ends toward the middle of the rope. The branches went on the rope like this 


 Hold the first branch so it hangs off the rope about 8 inches then wrap the wire around the rope and the middle of the branch 3 or 4 times.

Place the next branch a few inches higher on the rope and wrap it a couple of times with wire.

Keep going till you get you get to the center.  You may have to add a few short branches to hide the rope and tree branches in the center.  Once you are all done hang it up and if needed add more branches with wire. .. 
There you have it!  A beautiful fresh garland for under $10.00  It probably only took 30 minutes to make the the garland.  But it makes a big mess so with clean up start to finish it was more like an hour.

See the rope showing through?  Just add more branches or twist the garland to hide the rope.

Five days till Christmas!  Plenty of time to make your own fresh garland.
Tomorrow I am posting the before and afters of this room!

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