October 24, 2011

make a retro fall wreath

My boys and I are always dreaming up projects to do in our downtime, and they recently decided that we needed to make a fall wreath.  My oldest especially has been very intrigued with the idea that wreaths announce the seasons--a few weeks ago, placing a large apple that he made at school on the door, he announced, "It's apple picking time!"  They were emphatic that leaves should be the focus of this wreath.  I think that what they really wanted to do was take actual leaves and glue them onto a wreath (which could, theoretically, be beautiful, but when executed by 2- and 4-year-old boys, would look like the forest floor).  By the time we got to the craft store to pick out some supplies, they were fully on board with my dreams of handmade pompoms and wool felt.  The beauty of this project is that you can customize it in a million different ways.  It would be lovely to do this in monochromatic shades, for instance.  Or imagine adding some felted acorns or a beautiful felt bird.  I let go on color choices and let my boys make those decisions, but I still love the way it turned out.  The major plus of this project was that all of three of us worked on it together, and we could have used even more helping hands, so it's a nice full-family project.  And though the orangey hues are reminiscent of Halloween, this is transitional enough to last us right through Thanksgiving.

  • Pompom maker (available in the knitting section at the craft store--I bought two so both boys could work at the same time)
  • 12" wreath form
  • 2 spools grosgrain ribbon
  • 1 skein multi-colored yarn
  • 2 sheets wool felt
  • needle
  • hot glue gun
  • leaves from your yard and/or leaf template
  1. If you need a ribbon to hang your wreath, attach it to the wreath form now.  Use the grosgrain ribbon to wrap your entire wreath form.  We used a few different colors of ribbon.  Secure the end with a dab of hot glue.
  2. I loved making pompoms as a
    kid.  We are thinking up all sorts
    of uses for our new tool! 
  3. Collect leaves from your yard and trace them onto paper (or simply use the leaf template).  Using the template, cut the leaves out of wool felt.  We cut out nine walnut leaves and three oak leaves for our wreath.  Using the needle, create a simple vein with the yarn through each leaf.  No knots needed--the yarn will stay in place thanks to the thickness of the wool felt.
  4. Create your pompoms.  We made seven large pompoms.  This is great for developing those fine motor skills, too!
  5. Using the hot glue gun, attach the pompoms and leaves in groups around the wreath.
This is definitely an adults-required project, but we had so much fun with it.  I hope you do, too!

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