This year for Halloween I decided to go with a Nightmare Before Christmas theme for the exterior of my home. After searching on Etsy for wreaths and garlands I had found many great options, but they came with a hefty price tag. With help from some super crafty friends, I learned how to make the mesh garland.
For the Jack faces, I bought small round wooden cutouts at Michaels craft store. First I started off painting them white. Once they were dry used a paint pen Sharpie to draw on their faces. For the larger Jack on my wreath, I used craft paint, but I really liked the results with the Sharpie even better. Once they were dry I hot glued pipe cleaner on the back of each one so they would be easy to attach later on in the process.
Next, you will need a 9-foot work garland. I found mine at Hobby Lobby. It helps to lay it out flat on the floor so you can have a perfectly straight work surface. Straighten the wire as much as possible, as it comes folded from the store. Next take the tinsel-like arms and fold those out straight as well.
*Sidenote-please excuse the look of sheer determination above!
You will want to use a wide mesh ribbon for the next step as it will be your main base. The orange I used was 21 inches. Leave a little bit unrolled at the end to cover the bare wire. When you start, you will know what I mean by that as part of the wire sticks out before you get to the tinsel arms.
Next, you will roll it out using your tinsel arms as your measurement. Start at the first tinsel arms by gathering your ribbon side to side and wrapping the arms around it. From there roll past the next set of tinsel arms and stop after you get to the following set of arms, basically, skip a set of arms between each. This will give you the perfect measurement all the way down. once you have that measurement, again gather your ribbon from side to side and go back down to the tinsel arms you just skipped. Attach the ribbon by twisting the arms around it as you did the first one. Doing this is what gives you extra ribbon to create the poof. Continue this step all the way down. At the end again leave extra ribbon to cover the wire at the end. Cut off the remainder.
This shows you how the twists will look once your first layer is completed. There will be plenty of tinsel left over for other layers, just twist it as tight as possible to make sure you have space.
Next, I repeated the same steps above, except this time I used a 10-inch mesh ribbon and then a smaller green ribbon to allow the original one to show through from behind. I found some purple tubing at Dollar Tree and attached that to the tinsel the same way.
Once you have your ribbon base completed, it is time to add on extras. I did this by adding on top of the tinsel arms as it was the perfect spot to hot glue items. I purchased several packs of styrofoam balls at Dollar Tree. After covering them with Modpodge they were sprinkled with glitter. (A tip: before you start to paint on the Modpodge is to put the balls on skewer sticks . Then use a foam brush to paint on the glue, then sprinkle the glitter, and place them with their sticks in a cup or vase to dry. This really speeds up the drying process.)
I had purchased several different prints and colors of the wire trimmed ribbon. Short lengths of those were cut to attach to the tinsel ends as well. The Jack faces were hot glued on top of the ribbon.
My super crafty friend created this bow and we glued another Jack on top of that. I attached some floral picks and the bow with hot glue. For final touches, some glittery bones and spiders found at Michaels were attached.
The really fun part about this process is that you can add as little or as much as you would like in order to have it match your personal taste! I hope this shows you that the wire mesh garland is so easy to do on your own! Happy Halloween and happy crafting!
And as always if you have any questions feel free to comment or shoot me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.