Monday, November 29, 2010

Paper Christmas Tree Garland

Time for a confession. I am what is sometimes known as a Christmas Crazy (at least that's what my husband calls me!). I booked today off work with the express purpose of decorating my house, listening to Christmas carols and drinking hot chocolate. And I'll be getting started on all that as soon I finish this post!

Last night while sorting through my boxes of decorations, I realized that I don't have a garland for our tree. Since we have a Christmas budget and I'd rather use it on gifts and baking, I decided to make my own garland. Unfortunately, the only ideas I could find with a Google search required a lot of materials I didn't have. What I did have on hand was Christmas paper so I decided to use that.

Remember those paper chains that you used to make in elementary school out of strips of paper? They make really nice garlands! To make it look a little less like a 6 year old made it, use scrapbook paper cut into 6 inch by 1 inch strips. This yields smaller and less droopy loops. If you're using 12x12 paper than one piece yields 24 strips.

I used 5 different types of double sided paper, 11 pieces all together. You need about 8 loops to make a foot of garland. Once again I must sing the praises of my Fiskars paper cutter. If I had to measure, mark and then cut with scissors I would have given up for sure. With the paper cutter I was able to get all my strips cut in under an hour.

Start by making one of your strips into a loop and stapling it. You could use hot glue instead of staples but I chose staples because they were just so much easier and you have so many loops to complete. Plus, the staples won't show once the garland is up on the tree. Next, take another strip in contrasting paper and create a loop that links through your first loop and staple it. Then repeat, alternating papers with each loop.

It gets a bit tedious but I created 264 loops, approximately 33 feet of garland, in about an hour. I'm really pleased with how it turned out and I'm happy that I was able to make it using stuff I already had around the house. Christmas budget in tact!

P.S. Don't forget to enter my Christmas Magnet Giveaway!

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