Sunday, November 20, 2011

FINE, I WILL THEN. [Tutorial]

I finally gave in today and hatched a craft.

I've been staring at the leaves for months, here at home, in Arkansas, in Tahoe - I just keep staring at them and fantasizing about making wreaths, taking their picture, becoming ONE with them.

Stop staring at me, swan!
Because I'm obviously a psycho.

And then I saw Dig's post about Bleeping Wreaths and was all, Oh look how pretty! I want to make a wreath from leaves! but then I was all, But oh, Bubba hates holiday decorations and I could never hang one on our front door screen door because he'd totally poop but then I was all, I bet I can make one that's really lightweight and won't wreck the screen or I can put it someplace where he won't get all WHAT'S UP, HOLIDAY LOSER or whatever. 

It was a whole thing.

So this weekend came along, when Bubba was going out of town and I was left unsupervised in the presence of leaves and fall and wreath making materials abounding just all over the fucking place, so after a lot of hemming and mental hawing over What If Bubba Hates It and I Have To Explain Myself For Making Something Holiday-ish, I shut up my mind and just did it.

And, really, there's nothing HOLIDAY-y about fall leaves, really. When you think about it. Which I did. Lots.

Also, there's so much other shit I needed to do, that I was having a hard time justifying taking time to make wreaths that might not be met with the warmest acceptance and approval. Until I realized that I was actually standing still, staring at the space on the wall where I wanted to put these alleged wreaths and had stopped all productive activity to do so, and so wasn't doing anything anyway.

Exactly what my mind was imagining.

I was just wasting time staring and wanting and itching to craft and so I told myself to stop being such a freak and just do what the crafting fingers wanted: Make a god damned wreath and shut the hell up, self. 

So I did.

Yeah - take that, self.

Also, I went and took pictures of the pistache trees that are all aflame with fall on our street. They've been staring at me all week and I just needed to get them together with the camera for a quick second before they were barren from the windy rainy weather and I had to be all sad that I missed my chance and begin administering the mental beatings that would carry over until next fall.

Aflame, I tell you.

Sometimes it takes a lot of self flagellation for anything to get done around here, is what I'm saying.

See, that wasn't so hard. I don't know why I make things so difficult.
 And then, after photographing the trees and collecting leaves in the rain from my neighbors' driveways while they looked out at me with pity from their living room windows (Hi, people - FYI: Pointing is not helping.), I took 20 god damned minutes and made two adorable wreaths that, when Bubba rolls his eyes and points to them in a few months when it's Valentine's Day and they're still hanging on the wall, will get thrown into the vegetable beds and composted because TAH DOW they are biodegradable.


Simple Ass Wreaths Tutorial

Makes 2 wreaths

A bunch of leaves of whatever colors are around
An old file folder
Hot glue gun with hot glue sticks
1 foot of ribbon, strip of cloth, length of twine - whatever tying implement you have lying about tangling up with other shit in your craft supplies
Two different sized bowls that both fit on one half of the file folder

How to
(Sorry, no photos of the process. I was in and out of this project in about 20 minutes and thought I'd end up throwing it away in the composter, so didn't take any pictures. That'll teach me.)
Take your file folder, and keeping it folded, trace the circumference of the larger bowl onto the folder. Then put the smaller bowl inside that circle and trace that one so that you now have a nice O shape at least two inches wide.

Cut the Os out.

Heat up the glue gun and start gluing down leaves in whatever fashion suits you. I layered them up with their stem ends all going the same direction until the stems started getting in the way and then I just cut them off. And because I don't like waste - even wasting of shit that was going to be thrown in a heap at the curb anyway - I used all the leaves and just started gluing and stuffing them in wherever they'd fit when I got to the last few.

Make the other wreath just like I said, there.

Loop your tying implement (I used some 1" ribbon left in my wrapping supply box) over the first wreath and tuck it behind the leaves on the front. Tape it down to the cardboard O backing and tuck the other end over the other wreath and tape that down.

You're done.

Oh. Yeah. That was pretty fast.

Yeah, that's pretty much it.

I hung mine by hiding a tack behind the leaves on the top wreath and pinning it to the wall, but you could tie another length of ribbon or whatever to the top wreath and swing it over your front door (I tried this, but I knew Bubba would hate it so I stopped) or tie a bow in it and pin it to the wall from the bow or even loop it over the top of a framed picture and tape it to the back. You could also hang it from a suction cup hook to your front windows, like I imagined doing when I was in denial about Bubba's hatred for all things Holiday Decorate-y, but I'll leave it to you to determine how much of a scrooge your beloved might be.

The only other thing I did was go back to the wreath, after it was hung where I wanted it, and glued some of the floppy leaves in place so they wouldn't dry all wonky. But if you're using leaves that are already real dry, you won't have to do this.

Then sit at your bar, even though it's 11am and there's no need for cocktails just yet, and write a blog post about what a lunatic you are and how you should probably not be left unsupervised and how you should REALLY be writing all these words for NaNoWriMo since you have about 1500 to go for the day and you haven't even typed word ONE.

So, yeah, I'll be seeing you. Happy wreathing.


  1. Those look great! Very cool! :)

  2. But you left out the exciting conclusion: What did Bubba say?

  3. My family all acted like I was nuts yesterday when I was saying "Look how pretty the leaves are!!"


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