Beaded Garlands with Tassels and What to do with Them
I’m an artist and a professional crafter and because I craft home décor pieces, I follow decorating trends. Not all of them because I like to stay in my lane. I gravitate towards the farmhouse theme, shabby chic,+ and some boho. Since that’s what I like to see, that’s what I like to create. The beaded garlands I was seeing everywhere confused me at first. I didn’t know how to style them, and I didn’t see how I could incorporate them into my house. Until I started doing craft shows. I needed to develop a few décor items that I could direct people to when they were looking for something besides a wall hanging. Beaded garlands, styled in the way I use them in my house, were a great addition to my inventory.
You just need a few materials to make a beaded garland. They’re inexpensive to make and you might already have the materials in your stash. You’ll need beads. I get some of my beads from Amazon and sometimes I get them at thrift stores. I found an old, beaded car seat cover not long ago and harvested the beads. So many beads! I like to work with different shapes and sizes, so these were perfect for me. You’ll also need twine or yarn. If you want to attach a tag to your garland, you’ll need a scrap piece of wood or whatever you have on hand. I like to use these wood rounds and banners I found at The Dollar Tree.
I also like to use cedar tags that I find at the landscaping store. They’re sold as a twenty-foot border for about $10. I like them because they’re already cut to size and they’re the right shape.
You’ll also need an embroidery needle to string your beads. I say this often, and it bears repeating. Use the right tool for the job. It saves time and frustration to make a small investment. I tried to make these by winding my twine and taping the end. Don’t do this!
How to Start your Project
I make tags to put on my garlands. When I need multiples of a project I like to make as many as I can in one crafting session. It saves time and if it’s a messy project I only have to clean up the mess that one time. if you’re going to put an image on your tag just print the image out in the size you’ll need it. If you’re using an inkjet printer spray your image with hairspray. I find that this helps set the ink that way it won’t smear when you apply mod podge.
Apply Mod Podge
Apply a light coat of mod podge to your tag surface then lay your paper down one side at a time rubbing it lightly as you go. Just work out the wrinkles carefully and let it dry. When the mod podge has dried add a top layer and let that dry. To remove the edges of the paper I use a sanding sponge. Sand away from the edges of your tag and your paper will look like it was always there. I always use a coordinating piece of scrapbook paper on the back of my tag. It gives it a finished look that I like. Just mod podge it on the same way. You could also just paint or stain the back. The last thing you’ll need to do here is drill a hole in the top center of your tag.
If you want your beads to match your image on the tag figure that out beforehand. There are lot of ways to color your beads. You can paint them or stain them by threading on a skewer. Spray them or brush them with paint then lay them over an open box to dry. If I’m just using a few beads of the same color I often use a sharpie marker or a stain pen to color them. Just out them on skewer the same way and you won’t have to chase the beads all over to get the job done.
I make the tassel next. You could use twine or yarn, but my favorite is nautical rope. I get it at The Dollar Tree, but Amazon has it too. I like the jute rope and the white cotton nautical rope. To make my tassel I cut two lengths of rope about eight inches long. I bend them in half then I wrap twine around the top about half an inch down, so that the tassel has a head. I wrap the twine about ten times then I knot it and cut the ends off tight so they won’t show. Then I unravel the rope to create the tassel. If I’m using the white rope, I comb the tassel with a fine-tooth comb. It gets the tangles out and it just looks neater. Then I trim the tassel so all the ends are even.
String the beads
Now it’s time to string the beads. I take a length of twine and thread my needle. I pull it through the eye to create a double-strand the length I want my garland to be. I start threading my twine through the head of the tassel and I make a slip knot so that my tassel is at the end of the garland. I have my bead pattern figured out before I string them and so I’m all ready to go.
Add your beads in the pattern you want them and when you’re finished with the pattern tie a knot to keep your beads taut. Now thread the leftover end through the hole you drilled in your tag. Now you’re ready to style your garland.
There are so many ways to use your new piece of home décor. You can add it to a three-tiered tray or drape It over the edge of a basket of pillows.
I hung one on the rung of my blanket ladder and I’ve got one propped on the top of a book stack in my kitchen.
Whichever way you choose to display your garland, I know you had fun making it. Until next time – happy crafting.