Add some homemade charm to your Christmas tree this year with a cranberry and popcorn garland! I’ve got the tutorial on how to make your own adorable, old-fashioned garland below with a bunch of tips and tricks, because it isn’t as easy as you might think! Plus, how to keep it fresh for years. First, you’re going to need some supplies: I’m going to include the instructions in a recipe box below so you can easily print them out:
- Thread or Fishing Line (if using on Christmas tree and want it to swoop)
- 26 gauge floral wire (if you're using as a garland or want it to wrap something)
- Start by washing the cranberries. As you wash them, go through them and toss the mushy ones (or save them for a recipe.)
- Next, make your popcorn. You might want to do this a day or two before and leave the popcorn out so it gets stale and isn't so brittle and fragile.
- Then thread your needle and tie a knot at one end of your string - be sure to measure how long you want to string, and add extra length for hanging is not adding to your Christmas tree.
- Or if you're using floral wire, unravel half of your garland size, and start threading.
- Thread a cranberry and push it all the way to the end. Test your knot and make sure it's secure. Then add three kernels of popcorn and push them down. Continue adding one cranberry and 3 popcorn kernels, pushing them down the string once you get a several threaded (it saves time to push a bunch, rather than one-by-one, but I found that if you try to push more than 3 popcorn kernels, they break more.)
- Continue threading until you have the length of garland you need. Tie a knot at the end.
- Or is using floral wire, thread until you fill one half, then wrap your wire into a loop (to hang on a nail) and then unwrap more floral wire from the other end and keep threading. Thread till the end, then wrap your wire into another loop. (See photo below.)
- If you wish to preserve the garland to use next year, spray the entire garland with shellac. Twice!
- Allow the garland to dry, then add it to your tree or hang on your wall and enjoy!
- Remember: the cranberries and popcorn are no longer edible, so keep kids, pets, and hungry husbands away from it.
- And if you're having difficulty threading the popcorn, remember, stale popcorn is easier to work with because it gets softer, and it is easier to thread through the meaty (ball) end of the popcorn.
I used floral wire to make my garland and I found it was really easy because there is no needle and the popcorn and cranberries just thread on and some even slide down the wire on their own. It’s not as “swoopy” as thread will be, but I’m okay with that and will still be adding my garlands to the tree. Decorating for Christmas is always more fun with friends, so stay tuned for Thursday’s post on how to turn your cranberry and popcorn garland-making into a mini-party with friends, food, and Christmas movies!