How to Turn Fabric Scraps into a Fabric Wreath
Fact: Most craft projects, ESPECIALLY wreath-making projects, are expensive. Sure, the wire frames are cheap, but when it comes to obtaining things with which to adorn said frame, nothing comes cheap.
Now, what if I told you there was a way to turn pieces of clothing you ought/want to throw away into cute wreaths? You'd be pretty stoked, right? Well, prepare to be stoked, compadre, because doing so is exceedingly easy, and surprisingly therapeutic.
I only discovered the concept of rag wreaths this year, but ever since I got the basic materials, I've been churning out a bunch! They make for great holiday decorations (both winter holidays AND other occasions- I'm going to make a Valentine's Day rag wreath next) and fun, low-cost, handmade gifts. What's not to love?
Materials Needed to Turn Fabric Scraps into a Fabric Wreath
Making these suckers is simple. You will need....
- Fabric you are prepared to tear to shreds
- A wreath frame
- Ribbon or some other wreath adornments (optional)
About the fabric: Anything goes, really. if you are working with thin fabric, you'll need more yardage than if you're working with thick fabric. If you have a bunch of clothes or some old blankets you need to get rid of, you won't need to buy anything. If you want to be more fancy, I recommend turning to Etsy for some fabric scraps (people just sell boxes of them!) or, if you prefer to do things offline, going to a local fabric store and rummaging through their sale and scrap bins.
About the scissors: I was a bit concerned that only fabric scissors would do, but regular scissors seemed to be just fine. Some of my friends do very little cutting when making their fabric strips for these wreaths- they just snip a swath of fabric at the top and tear the rest of the way down... so you won't necessarily be doing a ton of cutting.
About the wreath frame: I used wire wreath frames to create my rag wreaths. I have also seen rag wreaths constructed around foam or straw wreaths. The style of wreath frame you select is going to influence how you wreath looks in the end- wire wreaths typically require you to tie two rows of knots, whereas all you need to do to adorn foam or straw wreaths is tie fabric around the outer rim in one later.
I recommend foam, straw, and twig wreaths for those who have prettier fabric scraps, and wire wreaths for those who just have a high volume of fabric.
How to Make a Rag Wreath
The actual construction of a rag wreath is ridiculously simple.
- Cut your fabric scraps into thin strips: I recommend cutting them into something about 3/4 of an inch wide. The length of the strips will depend on the type of wreath frame you'll be tying them onto. Longer strips are needed for foam, hay, and twig-based wreaths since there is a thicker object to tie the strips around. If you're dealing with a wire frame, you should make the strips slightly shorter, as long, dangling strips would have a weird, droopy effect.
- Tie your fabric strips around the wreath: If you're using different colored strips, tie them on in a consistent pattern to ensure that you don't end up getting one color bunched up in one area. If you are dealing with unknown quantities of different patterns and colors, tie strips of the same sort to opposite ends of the wreath frame to ensure a balanced appearance (if that's what you're going for)
- Decorate the wreath: Even though rag wreaths are, by nature, somewhat messy looking, they still look cute with little decorations, like bows, mittens, and other cute flourishes. Hunt around your house for little things that you can glue or tie (perhaps using one of those vegetable tie wraps) to the frame.
As you go about your wreath-making business, don't worry too much about being neat. The fun thing about these wreaths is that they're SUPPOSED to look a bit raggedy! It adds to their charm!!
Isn't it nice to be able to create a messy wreath for once?
Fun Idea: Host a Wreath-Making Party!
Every year, I have friends over to make a holiday craft. This year, we all got together to make rag wreaths. I bought the wreath frames and a bunch of vintage fabric off of Etsy, and my buddies brought their own scissors, plus some extra fabric and decorations of their own.
We had a ton of fun making them while chatting and watching Love Actually- one of my all-time favorite holiday films. The great thing about this craft is that EVERYONE'S wreaths turned out looking great, and making them was so simple that we were able to simultaneously do that while also eating, watching the movie, and talking. Talk about an efficient party!
Whether you do it in the company of others or on your own, I really hope you have a go at making your own rag wreath. They're a wonderful, eco-friendly, low-hassle, low-cost decoration to make, and can be adapted to any season.
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