The holidays are the time to break out all the house jewelry, and garland is probably the most versatile. It can be draped on the mantle, swathed on a window, trimmed on the doorways inside and out, curled up the staircase, artfully piled on a tabletop, or wound round the tree. Fresh evergreen is traditional for its seasonal green color and wonderful fragrance, and cranberries and popcorn are beloved for trees, but there are a lot of crafty people coming up with fun new garland ideas that look fresh for the winter holidays.
Very popular among the DIY crowd, pompoms made from yarn are cheerful and can be made in just about any color and diameter from small and delicate to big and fluffy. To make them yourself you need yarn, a needle and a plastic pompom maker that can be found at any craft store. Or buy them ready-made at Etsy.
Go beyond simple paper chains with paper garlands of spruce trees, snowmen, Santa’s or simple geometric shapes in colors that complement your homes holiday style. Or try a giant faux holly berry garland like this one for some serious wow. Head here for a how-to tutorial.
Wooden Bead Garland
Formerly tasked with holding back curtains in traditional rooms, tassels are getting a crafty makeunder with materials such as paper, felt, cotton and wool yarn in neutral and bright colors never before seen in a stuffy living room. Strung together to make a garland, they create a look that says it’s time to celebrate. Purchase individual tassels here and completed garland here.
Felt Cutout or Scrap Garland
Turn a pile of leftover or remnant felt scraps into a festive garland. The technique is similar to that of fleece tie blankets. In other words, easy. Or cut out sweet shapes like snowmen, snowflakes or stars for a kid-friendly look.
Felt Ball Garland
A little trickier to make than cut outs, fully assembled felt ball garland can be found in lots of home accessory stores like HomeGoods and Target as well as at Amazon and Etsy. Individual balls are sold at most craft stores for stringing at home.
A modern approach to garland is to hang individual pieces from a thread or ribbon like this eucalyptus version. Still green, still fragrant—it has much the same appeal as fresh evergreens but in a less cluttered, less messy and more contemporary package.
With endless color and pattern options, fabric garland is infinitely customizable. Tie strips for an informal look or cut and sew into triangles for a pennant banner. Go Holidays!
Forage in your backyard to come up with a simple, natural garland (or wall hanging to borrow from the current macrame trend).
Orange and apple slices, cinnamon sticks and, of course, cranberries make pretty, richly colored garland that are fragrant, too.
by Laurie Junker