Updated: Nov 14
I like to do a simple craft once and awhile, one where I can just have fun without a lot of thinking to relax the mind. This year, the idea came to me as I perused the Halloween clearance aisle at our local arts and crafts store. While the objective was simple enough, creating the wreath turned out to be a little more complex than I originally thought.
It ended up taking longer to complete than I predicted, however, I am so thrilled by the way it looked when all was said and done, that it was time well spent!
My Supply List:
wreath form (non-foam)
mesh ribbon (called poly ribbon sometimes)
fake leafy garland
string of lights
batteries (if lights are battery operated)
a jewelry gift box (cardboard)
hot glue gun and sticks
(sizes are not specified because the amount of supplies are dependent upon the wreath's dimensions)
I knew I wanted to attach the lights first. But, the set I picked were battery operated and needed to have the pack hidden behind the wreath. To solve the dilemma, I came up with the idea of using a jewelry gift box (made from cardboard) and punctured holes in the bottom with a pair of scissors. That way, the wire could go through the holes and secure the box in place. With the box fastened tight, I used the adhesive velcro to hold the battery pack in the box.
Cutting the wire into smaller pieces, I used them to wrap the lights in place at each plastic bridge of the wreath skeleton. I don't think it matters if you start on the outside or inner circle, but I went with the inner to work my way out. There were forty purple lights on the string and the length was perfect. It wrapped around two times, with some extra, and made it so that the entire wreath could be lit up.
This part was time consuming, I am not going to lie. In the end, it was well worth it because I don't have to worry about the lights coming off and falling out of place. Besides, it was fun!
Next came the part I had to do a little research into, before beginning. I have not worked with mesh ribbon before, and searched YouTube for videos on how to create a wreath with the poofy material. As you can imagine, there are a lot of different videos showing a variety of ways to use the ribbon.
Whichever way works best for you is what I would recommend. I used the pull through method and just had fun creating poofy loops all over the circle on the outside. This part is also very time consuming, but it didn't matter to me because I having a blast until...I ran out of mesh!
The store had no more of the regular black color, so I resorted to using the internet and ordered another spool. Since I was not going to be able to complete the mesh segment that day, I continued onto the fake garlands so I could have a better sense of what it was going to look like.
This is also where the plastic garbage bag is handy to have hanging off the back of your chair or located right beside you. There will be a lot of stray mesh ribbon strings, wire cuttings, and future fake floral clippings that will need to be discarded. Since I have dogs, I try to ensure that the plastic mesh ribbon pieces don't fall onto the floor.
The darker green, leafy garland was up first and I easily wired it against the wreath skeleton. After it was in place, the fuzzy purple garland was layered on top. (It reminds me of cattails and a swamp-like environment with this garland).
As you can see in the side image, the original spool of mesh ribbon only filled out the outer edge. And even then, it did not have enough to meet end to end.
If I were to try to do another wreath this size, in the mesh ribbon, I would make sure to purchase two spools from the start. But that is how we learn, isn't it? (At least it will stick in my head more after this mistake)
For the next step, I wanted to have an idea in my mind about where the wreath pics were going to go. Laying out the picks around the wreath is the best way for me to visualize the final result. You'll see in the next pic.
Aren't they just cute, and happy, little ghosts? Ghosts are my favorite, especially when there is no glitter on them! Some people must like glitter, I suppose, but I am not a fan of the vial embellishment. After working in a craft store for a few years, you learn to hate the stuff that sticks itself to everything other than what it is supposed to.
So when I found these awesome picks without glitter coating them, my first thought was that I have hit the jackpot, and then my second thought was "yes, someone was thinking!" Except for the string of lights, and the emergency spool of mesh ribbon I had on order, everything else was purchased on clearance prices and/or was found in our basement. I hardly buy anything at full price when it comes to crafting and art supplies due to their cost. But, I view it as an exciting treasure hunt, because like this craft demonstrates, you never know what hidden gems await you for inspiration.
Once I had an idea of where I wanted them to go on the wreath, I twisted around the strong wire they were on into a paper clip-like shape. I hooked them into the wreath and nestled them amongst the vegetation. I did strengthen the connection between the pick and it's wire with a bead of hot glue.
When it comes to the part of attaching the flowers, I tend to go for my hot glue gun. The flowers I choose, gladiolus to be precise, had a variety of buds in different stages; such as a tiny bud, partially opened, and fully opened.
They were nice to use in filling up any gaps leftover in the wreath and for helping to hide the jewelry box holding the battery pack.
Finally, my emergency spool of ribbon had arrived in the mail and I was ready to continue working on my wreath! It wasn't exactly the same stuff that I had before, however, I was glad that the difference was barely noticeable. It took me awhile to put the ribbon in and I stuffed a majority of in the back to fill in the holes. The extra "filler" made an improvement in my opinion.
As I finished with the last of the mesh, the rest of the picks and flowers were next. However, when it came to putting in the center picks, I found it necessary to attach them before I was finished with the inner circle. That way, I could put the mesh in and around so that the wreath wouldn't have empty spaces on the inside.
Now, I ended up changing the design slightly from what I had planned out in the above image from Step 5. It often happens to me like that, and I consider it just part of the process. So, no, you are not seeing the image wrong. I just altered a few arrangements is all.
It took me awhile to edit the look, and I ended up using all of the second spool of mesh to finish it. But Ta-Da! (And most of the wreath picks glow in the dark - BONUS!) I really think that the styrofoam picks brought it up another level and the red gladiolus flowers gave it the extra pop of color it craved.