The grey days of a Midwestern winter are here, but inside my craft room, things are Merry and Bright. Long awaited arrival of October Afternoon fulfills my wish to make a most wonderful countdown garland to share with you! Every saved scrap of greeting card and items sent in the mail are perfect for this project. A how to for you!
STEP ONE - GATHER on your craft desk everything you like! Letters that don't have go-afters, odd buttons, favorite scraps saved from greeting cards, embellishments that hadn't the right Place to Be, anything at all that pleases your eye.
STEP TWO - ORGANIZE BY COLOR all of the items you have gathered. By doing this the color scheme of your garland will emerge. Anything that did not fit into one of these piles, I did not use. Sandy, 521 Lake Street, sent me the wonderful vintage wooden Christmas ornaments which will remind me of her each time I look at my garland.
STEP THREE - GATHER YOUR SUPPLIES Craft tip - Do you have a spool of wire and needle nose wire cutters? I don't think a crafting day goes by that I don't use these. I will make little loops to hang each tag from my garland.
STEP FOUR - CLEAR YOUR WORK SPACE I have gathered all of the items I will use in my garland and placed them on a small table to my side. I have put away everything that I will not be using. This helps bring out my creativity.
STEP FIVE - DIVIDE AND CONQUER! A garland no matter the length can easily be managed by repeating a pattern within uniform lengths of space. My garland is six-feet long; so I will have six areas that will repeat the same pattern. MAIN FOCAL POINT - One LARGE tag made for each divided space. CRAFT TIP - Because my garland hangs in a window, I have sandwiched cardboard between front and back printed papers.
MEDIUM AND SMALL tags are created enough for each divided length of space.
VARY YOUR SHAPES - Because most of my tags are square or rectangle, I have made small silvery "coins" to give the garland sparkle. CRAFT TIP - Create one large and small sized cardboard circle for each divided length of garland. Place cardboard behind image and hold up to the light to center. Glue stick in place and THEN trim. Repeat with back image.
STEP SIX - TIME FOR FUN! Oh my gosh! I can't express enough how much fun it is to use all of the Inside Images of vintage greeting cards I have saved from all of my paper projects. They are my very favorite. I was so excited that this delicate card border found the perfect Place to Be. Beautiful!
Little ornament stickers left over from my Mitten Garland fit right in with my color scheme. Left over flowers, jingle bells, and Greetings are used in such a happy way.
HAPPY NEW YEAR! A most favorite story ever shared, here ,is represented with this tag. CRAFT TIP - Vary the types of numbers used in your Countdown Garland. Coming across unexpected numbers in unexpected places will draw the viewer in for a closer look.
SEE THE PATTERN? Focal Point, medium and small tags, something rectangle, something round large and small, wooden ornament, and countdown number "8".
GARLANDS - I have purchased my vintage plastic garland several times now on Etsy or Ebay at a very minimal price. I have also used Ric Rac for this type of garland on several occasions. Use What's on Hand!
I'm giggling that this may very well be my lengthiest post ever as my garland is so very long! SIGH! Another inside scene used on the "4" tag.
I'm often asked how I can possibly cut into my beautiful vintage greeting cards rather than use copies. Do what feels right for you. For me, I am creating art by using the originals in a way not intended but none the less in a way to still enjoy the beautiful workmanship.
I hope these many examples of my own garland will perhaps inspire you to create one of your own. Making each tag special will result in something to enjoy year after year.
And please if you should create a Merry & Bright Garland, I do hope you will share it with me!