Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Monogrammed Fall Wreath

As much as I love spending time outdoors in the summer with all of the sunshine and swimming, I LOVE, love, love fall. It has been my favorite season as long as I can remember. I love how the light changes in the sky, how the air just starts to crisp, how my recipe repertoire makes a perceptible shift toward the more hearty. I just love fall. Cheesy, but true!

I love decorating for fall, too. I don't really "decorate" for the summer or spring. I throw up a few St. Patty's decos in March, but not much more. Fall is another story. I love to have pumpkins, leaves, candles, and more to ring in the fall. I also think it's fun that fall decorations can stay up until the Christmas decorations come out! That does make for a sad time in January when ALL the decorations go back in their boxes....but January's a long way away.

I saw this idea for a Monogrammed Fall Wreath on Purple Lemon Design's blog, which is another that I really like. She has such cute ideas, including this one, which I changed up a tiny bit. I am including some more detail on execution for you based on what I learned (ie Hot Glue is SUPER hot!)! This project was very easy, fairly fast (less than 2 hours) and very affordable.

I completed the project for less than $7 total, and I think it would cost much more if ordered somewhere like Pottery Barn! Here's the cost breakdown:
$3.50 for the Styrofoam with Joanne's Coupon
$2 for 2 bags of leaves at the dollar store ( I go to Dollar Tree--90 leaves for $1!)
$1 for the fabric on the back
$0 for the hot glue and ribbon I already had!

Here are the items you'll need.

Styrofoam Rectangle, lots of leaves, fabric approximately the same size as your letter, hot glue, ribbon, tacks, also a marker, scissors, letter template, hot glue gun, sharp serrated knife (I used a bread knife).

To start off, you'll need to determine what shape to make. I wanted a monogram, but I think a rectangle or square shaped wreath would be fun and unusual, too.

I printed off a few letters and free hand drew the shape onto the styrofoam using a sharpie. I did an "F" and tried to fill up as much of the styrofoam as I could while still looking nice. On the tutorial, she enlarged her letter to fit an 11"x14" sized paper, but I didn't have that and just decided to "wing it."

After tracing your shape, you'll have to cut it out. I used a serrated bread knife after remembering that I'd seen "The Pros" on HGTV use an electric serrated knife to cut foam and thought it would do the trick well. I was right!

I found it was easier to cut the vertical lines if I cut in horizontally first---peek at the picture and it will make more sense.

With the horizontal "notches" in place, the shape cut out fairly quickly. However, I got overzealous and in a hurry and accidentally hacked off a piece. Luckily, it still "fit" within the "F" shape and looked okay. I tried to add text to the photo, but it's not quite large enough. Look for the little arrows to see how I did the horizontal cut lines.

Once the cutting was done, I deviated again from the original tutorial. Instead of using ribbon to cover the back ( which you'll want to do if you'll see the back side at all), I bought a remnant of brown fabric for fifty scents. I traced the "F" onto the fabric using the shape as a template, then hot glued it into place. Very easy!

Now, the fun begins! Start gluing on your leaves. Carefully. I have a cute new blister on my middle finger that will likely further hinder my hand modeling career. Shucks.

After a bit of trial and error, I found it was easier to put the hot glue on the leaves rather than the styrofoam. Take care when pressing down as (I know, repetitive, but true) the glue is super hot. Also, too much glue will melt the styrofoam and make your wreath look ugly.

*Be careful when you wrap the glue around the sides! I can't say it enough: "Hot Glue is HOT glue."

The gluing process is the most time consuming. It took me about an hour or so. I did put leaves over most of the back so it would look cool from the back if it was in front of a mirror, but I didn't try to cover the entire back.

After the gluing was done, I found some 1 1/2" satin ribbon that I'd gotten at Michael's for $1 to use for making the wreath hanger and some thumbtacks to help adhere it.

First, I cut the ribbon to length and then burned the edges a teensy bit to help prevent fraying. Please excuse the crappy & blurry photo!

Next, I made a large blobby pile (that's a technical term) of hot glue and pressed the ribbons down.

After that, I made a small dot of hot glue and stuck the tacks in there, through the glue and the ribbon. Hopefully the hot glue helps anchor the tack. These tacks aren't the most lovely, but I don't have plans to display the wreath on a glass door.

Finally, I tied a loose knot at the top and it was done! Ready for display!

Or how about in front of a mirror (that really needs to be cleaned!) on a fireplace?
I love how it turned out! Thanks to Purple Lemon for the great idea! I hope you try it!

1 comment:

  1. That is a very cute idea. I might have to try it!


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