Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Acorn Wreath! DIY



We have tons of acorns and pine cones in our front yard.  I LOVE Fall so I was jonesing to find a cute craft to use them.  I did use some of them on our Autumn themed mantel this year, but I needed a way to use the rest!  Last year Cady and I did a Fall themed ribbon wreath, but I was sort of tired of it so I decided "hey!  I could make an acorn wreath!"  There are tons of them on sale online and even other tutorials, but I figured it would be super easy and I was right.  It also cost me less than 10 bucks so that is the real win!

Gather:
First things first... You gotta find a super cute 1 year old to help gather acorns!


Fortunately I have one of these (if you don't, gather them yourself or grab any size kid, hubby, aunt, uncle, etc)!  Cady isn't as interested in doing crafts me with anymore (she's 13 and can't seem to get her face out of her phone...), but Milo loves hanging out and picking up dirty acorns, sticks, pine cones and anything else his chubby little hands can find.  I think one of my favorite parts of the holidays is doing crafting with the kids.  I've got a few pinned that will interest Cady and even a few that Milo can participate in.

Cleaning & Baking (don't skip this - you don't want outside critters infesting your house!):
Bring your Fall goodies inside and rinse them in the sink.  I use our plastic colander so that I can really shake, bounce and sift all of the dirt off - you may have to do this a couple of times depending on how big your colander is and how many acorns you collect!  I run the colander through the dishwasher afterwards to make sure it gets sanitized.  Put your acorns on a few papertowels to get the excess water off and then line a cookie sheet (or 2) with aluminum foil.  Dump your acorns (and pine cones if you have them) on the sheets and make sure they are single layer.


Once they are finished baking, let them cool.  You can leave them in longer, but I've found that 20 - 30 minutes at 200 degrees works perfect.  One time (yes, I've baked quite a few batches of acorns!) I cranked the heat up because I was going to multitask and preheat my oven for something else and the acorns started popping!  Like they seriously EXPLODED!  Another tip, before I put them in the oven I sprinkle them with cinnamon.  It makes them smell nice.

Assemble:
You'll need a Styrofoam wreath - whatever size you want, I used a 12 inch because that's what I had.  I wouldn't go much bigger because you'll need a TON of acorns and it could get too heavy.  I saw some really cute mini ones for sale online that looked like they were about 5 inches.  You'll also need ribbon, straight pins and a glue gun.


The ribbon was (obviously) 50% off at Hobby Lobby.  You KNOW you should never buy anything that is not on sale at Hobby Lobby...  And you probably won't use the whole roll.

Wrap the ribbon around the wreath, securing it with straight pins (see pic below).

Next I sorted thru the acorns.  I used plain ones for the first layer to cover the wreath.  I mainly covered the front of the wreath and the bottom inside.  There is no need to cover every square inch but if you want to, go for it!  I saved some of the "prettier" acorns to glue on as a partial second layer.  I also glued the tops of the prettier ones onto the acorn so it wouldn't fall off later.


Like I said, the second layer is just a partial one.  I mostly used it to pretty up the wreath with the capped acorns and fill in any gaps.

Lastly I bought a roll of thick burlap ribbon to use for a hanger (again 50% off at Hobby Lobby and you won't use nearly all of it).  I folded it lengthwise and then made a bow at the top (folding it lengthwise make it extra sturdy and also gives the bow extra volume once you fluff it out).  You can use the leftover burlap on other fall or even Christmas decor!


Voila!  I love it!


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