Oct 12, 2011

DIY Autumn Leaves on Branches (made from orange colored paper bags!)

It seems like each year around this time I buy packages of orange colored paper bags with the high hopes of putting together little Halloween treats for the neighborhood kids. 
 To be totally honest, most of the time I end up doing nothing with the orange baggies because I normally stow them away and forget about them! It's later when I discover them again that I realize my plans were foiled by my disorganization!

But, this year I thought, "Ah HA! These little orange lovelies can become leaves for my mantle!" (cue: crazy craft-project induced laughter)
So yesterday, I bustled around the house during nap-time (okay, who am I kidding? My children never  seem to sleep! Do yours?) and gathered together my hot-glue gun and some other simple things to create an Autumn/Halloween/Perfect-for-Fall mantle decor-ish thingie.

Are you with me?

This is how it turned out:
Not too bad for a paper sack project, if I do say so myself!

Want to give it a try? 

Here's how I made this:

Materials Needed:
Branches from outside 
Orange colored Paper Bags
Hot Glue Gun and Hot glue Sticks
Leaf from outside (for template)

Step 1
Gather materials including some branches without leaves from outside. It may help to go ahead and lay your branches out on the surface you'd like to decorate. I decorated my mantle.
Step 2
Trace a small fall leaf that you've found outdoors. You can also find leaf templates online, but I am way too impatient to google and search for stuff like that.
Step 3
Cut the shapes of the leaves out. If you are smarter than me (which I can bet you are) you will use the side of the bag that does not have the bottom fold covering a portion. Also, if you want to really pat yourself on the back for being clever, you can cut through the bag rather than opening it out so that you double your leaf production.
Step 4
Continue cutting out leaves until you have the desired amount. I used three little baggies and this produced enough leaves for my entire mantle-of-branches. 
Step 5
Hot glue each leaf to the tip of each branch. Glue the bottom of each leaf base to the branch and then glue leaves along the branches if you wish too but make sure to glue them with the leaf base attached to the branch so it looks more natural. 
Step 6
Continue until your branches are covered

*optional: I spray painted my branches with while glossy paint before I started but I think it would look great even if you didn't do this!
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Secret Mom Thoughts said...

Very cute idea.

Susan Anderson said...

These look great on the twigs. So clever, Caroline!


karen said...

Sweet little project!

Diana Mieczan said...

This is brilliant and I am totally doing this in my flat! The other day I got some felt leaves that will go great with this. Thanks, sweetie. How is your week so far? Btw: one of my friends got the "welcome to my world" book you recommended on FB. It sounds so interesting. Also, I spotted this cool little art project and I thought of you:) http://www.sayyestohoboken.com/2011/10/rainy-day-crafts-with-kids-milk-art.html

Have a great Friday. xo

Caroline said...

SMT, Sue and Karen--thanks so much. It was super easy and honestly--looks MUCH better in person than in the pictures. I need a new camera! Alas, money does not grow on trees! :))

Diana--thanks dear! My week is going well--just busy with the kids as you can imagine! So glad your friend bought the book--some very talented writers in there! Also--I am very familiar with Liz's Say Yes to Hoboken! She's super cool and has great style. :)

malia said...

really cute and great upcycling idea! xoxo Malia