This cute Rustic Circle Garland is one of my favorite projects from the Bigfoot Party and I will definitely be making it again. It’s a fun and easy way to add a pop of color and since you make it yourself, you can choose any colors you like. This is especially helpful when you are using colors not available with mass-produced party decorations.
- 3 Colors of Cardstock Paper
- 1.5″ Circle Punch
- 2″ Circle Punch
- 2.5″ Circle Punch
- Brown Chalk Ink
- Neutral-colored Thread
- Paper Trimmer
- Sewing Machine
Before you do anything, you will need to decide how much garland you want. For this project, I made 11 strands with alternating 20 or 25 circles, to be hung vertically. You can also make them longer, as a horizontal garland. Twenty-five circles make approximately five feet of garland, so you can add or subtract as needed.
The pattern of sizes and colors of the circles is also important. You don’t want it to be too repetitive, but for me and my OCD, random is nearly impossible. So, I created a “random pattern” to aid those who suffer like me. Of course, you could easily make these all the same color and size, but this tutorial focuses on a patterned garland.
Step 1: Use the paper trimmer to cut strips out of your primary paper, the one you want featured the most. For me, it was blue. When you cut the strips, you want to cut them slightly wider so the punch has enough space. Cut the strips as follows: 12 – 2.6″ strips, 12 – 2.1″ strips, 10 – 1.6″ strips.
Step 2: Use the paper trimmer to cut strips out of your secondary paper. For me, it was green. When you cut the strips, you want to cut them slightly wider so the punch has enough space. Cut the strips as follows: 9 – 2.6″ strips, 8 – 2.1″ strips.
Step 3: Use the paper trimmer to cut strips out of your accent paper. For me, it was brown. When you cut the strips, you want to cut them slightly wider so the punch has enough space. Cut the strips as follows: 10 – 1.6″ strips.
Step 4: Use the 2.5″ punch and the widest blue and green strips to make circles. You should punch out 41 large blue circles and 31 large green circles.
Step 5: Use the 2″ punch and the middle width blue and green strips to make circles. You should punch out 41 medium blue circles and 30 medium green circles.
Step 6: Use the 1.5″ punch and the smallest width blue and brown strips to make circles. You should punch out 41 small blue circles and 61 small brown circles.
Step 7: Now you’ll use the brown chalk ink to “age” your circles and give them that rustic look. Simply swipe the edges of each circle, all the way around, making sure to get both sides. Do this for all 245 circles. I used blue ink on the blue paper, but I think brown would have looked great, too. Do you have some shows on your DVR to watch? This task is perfect for catching up on those!
Step 8: This next step is where my crazy will show. Don’t judge. I admire artsy, free-spirted people who can do random. My brain isn’t wired that way. So for my fellow freaks, I give to you a “random” pattern. Arrange your circles into 11 rows following the pattern below.
Step 9: Once you have your pattern laid out nicely, stack them in order from top to bottom before a kid, pet, or husband knocks them around. I put mine in snack-sized Ziploc bags and wrote the strand number on them. (I know, I know.) Be careful when you handle the baggies though, the small circles like to fall out of line. Large paper clips might work, too, but I’d be afraid they would crimp the circles.
Step 10: Now for the fun part, sewing the strands of garland. Set your machine to a wide, straight stitch. Starting with the first circle of the first strand, sew a line straight down the middle of the circle. Don’t go too fast. When you reach the bottom edge of the circle, sew five empty stitches, then start the next circle. Those empty stitches should give you approximately 1/2″ between each circle. Repeat until you finish the stack of 20 circles.
Step 11: Repeat Step 10 until you have sewn all 11 strands. Remember, they will alternate between 20 and 25 strands. As you finish each strand, fold them accordion style and store them in their baggies.
I won’t say “that’s it” because this Rustic Circle Garland took some effort, but it’s well worth it when you look at the incredibly cute result. These received loads of comments and compliments and people couldn’t believe I made them myself.
A friend of mine used this same tutorial for her daughter’s grad party photo booth backdrop and she got tons of compliments, too. I’ve included a photo at the bottom.
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