By: Liz S
The holidays are a wonderful, magical time of the year. They are also an expensive and hectic time for families. I am always looking for a way to save some money while sharing an experience and making memories with my family. I love decorating inside and out for Christmas! Wreaths and swags are a festive favorite, but the price tags are sky high. Stop by any garden center and decorated wreaths can run up to $50. The bows alone can give me sticker shock, and all for something that gets tossed out after New Year’s Eve. We dabble in DIY projects but nothing hard core, yet we took on the task of making our own wreaths and swags. I promise you do not have to be super crafty to get a “WOW” result.
Step 1- Where to start? We went to our favorite local garden center and bought several plain-jane wreaths, 12-14” in size for about $8 each. You can use whatever sizes fit your need and of course, the plastic wreaths work if you are so inclined. I hit the Christmas Tree Shop and bought a bag of starfish, $5, and the Dollar Tree for ribbons, $1 each roll. I had some wire from an old ribbon making kit, but you can buy it locally for under $2 a roll. I wanted a Cape Cod feel to our wreaths hence the starfish. I used some pine cones that my daughter collected around the yard, and we sprinkled silver glitter on them.
Step 2- We simply attached the pinecones and starfish to the wreaths using the wire. Do as many as you like, placed wherever looks good to you. It’s all about self-expression and having fun. It is easy, I promise J I tied the bow around the wreath and we were done.
Step 3- My family was so proud of our wreaths, we decided to try our hand at swags. I grabbed a basket and pair of garden clippers and went off to our front yard. As many of us do, we have Leyland Cyprus trees and Holly bushes in our yard. All I did was cut a bunch of branches off. We played around with the branches to get a nice, full set, and then tied together at the stem with our wire. We added ribbon and in less than 5 minutes we had swags.
Making our own decorations was fun and festive. My husband, daughter and I had such a blast. The wreaths came in under $10 each and the swags were under $1.00!! Saving money allowed us to make some of these handmade gifts for friends and neighbors. We enjoyed being able to spread some holiday cheer and everyone loved them.
Whether it is making wreaths, a gingerbread house, cookies or candles- I hope you and your family can share a fun activity together this year. You may stumble on a new tradition like we have. Happy holidays from our family to yours.
Peace and Joy,
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