Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Adventures in Crafting: My Front Porch Purple Wreath Project

I've been on a purple kick lately and decided to use a purple leaf wreath as the centerpiece of my autumn porch decorations.  The only problem: I couldn't find an attractive option for purchase.  I obsessively searched local stores and the internet high and low; I put out calls on Etsy; no luck. And then, I found this, from the exquisite Twig & Thistle:


Gorgeous.  Perfect.  But not for sale.

Lovely Shelli at a' la mode laughingly refers to herself as a DIFM ("do it for me") personality as opposed to a DIY-er.  I'm much the same way in that as highly as I value and respect self-sufficiency, I am craft-challenged.  Glue guns and I have a bad history; I get a headache just walking into a major craft store; I've never sewed anything except for buttons; glitter bewilders me; I can't even cut in a straight line.  And sometime I'll have to tell you about The Day I Cried while Covered in Paint at Home Depot.

My oldest daughter, however, is very artsy-craftsy. One of her major disappointments with me is that I'm not.  Since I don't like disappointing my daughter with my shortcomings, and because I felt an obsessive-compulsive need for a purple leaf wreath, I decided to try to replicate the Twig & Thistle beauty above.  After all, the original creator had helpfully provided directions; they seemed straightforward.  Off to the craft store I went.

Actually, it took me five different trips to three craft stores to find my supplies because I am as inept at craft-supply gathering as I am at actually crafting.  It was not an auspicious start.

I finally got my act together and followed Twig & Thistle's tutorial carefully, omitting the fabric flower simply because I couldn't find fabric in time.  My home-spun result:

It's not as precise as the original, but I'm satisfied.  The nice thing about the leaves being pinned instead of glued is that I can always adjust/amend later as my time and desire permit.  For now, I think the purple wreath is striking against the white door, and together with the adjoining urns filled with orange leaves and purple flowers, suggests Halloween festivity without resorting to overt garishness.  We'll add pumpkins and other trimmings later in October.

So concludes my first real attempt at DIY home decor.  I kinda liked the experience.  Next thing you know, I'll be telling my husband I need to convert his walk-in closet to a craft room....

Many thanks to Twig & Thistle for the inspiration.  In turn, I'll be sharing this post with Between Naps on the Porch, My Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaSavvy Southern StyleSaved by SuzySouthern Hospitality, The Frugal Girls, and Centsational Girl.

Has anyone else tried this project?  How'd you fare?

FYI: I used Montana Gold spray paint in Blue Velvet, Lavender, and Light Lilac.  I required almost 30 feet of 1.5 inch grosgrain ribbon and 36 fabric leaves to cover the wreath form. Although the original directions didn't prescribe, I painted both sides of the leaves.  I also used a finishing spray to help protect the wreath from the outdoor elements (which are not a major concern in my warm, arid, rain-free climate, but better safe than sorry) --- I have no idea if this will be effective, but if I don't update my post later with a story about purple paint running down my white door, then you can assume it worked fine. :)


  1. I am craft challenged too! But, I think your wreath turned out so pretty. I like purple as it is an unexpected fall color. Thanks for sharing!

  2. As a purple lover, I say OUTSTANDING!!!!

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