It’s February, which means that
Speaking of true love: that’s exactly what
DIY Level: Beginner
- Tree bark wood slices, various sizes
- Acrylic paint
- Baker’s twine
- Miscellaneous craft objects of your choice (many objects are shown in this photo, but the only ones used in this project are: washi tape, red-and-white gingham strips, jingle bells)
- Drill with 1/8” drill bit
To begin, you’ll want to prepare your wood slices for hanging. This includes drilling holes in each slice to be able to hang it onto the garland.
Use a 1/8” drill bit (or whatever size is appropriate for your hanging string), and drill a hole about 1/4″ to 1/2” from the bark edge.
Drill a second hold directly across from the first one, so it hangs evenly and straight.
Do this for as many wood slices as you want. Of course, this will be entirely a personal choice, based upon your space, preferences, and wood slice sizes, but a good rule of thumb is to plan on about three wood slices for every two feet of garland.
Wipe off the sawdust from drilling, and pull out your acrylic paints. Time to decorate these just how you want them!
Be creative with your shapes and designs. I enjoyed using some metallic and glittery acrylic paints, because they provided sparkle and shine while still letting the wood grain show.
One tip to maintaining this garland’s rustic appeal while still making it appropriate for Valentine’s Day is to keep the color palette fairly tight. Glitter neon pink was the only “color” I used for the paints; white, gold, and soft black were other neutral colors of paints used.
When the paint is completely dry, it’s time to
Snip the extra twine off your knot end, so it’s about 1/2″ long.
You can simply attach these garlands to your window sill, or you can hang them on a hanging branch, which has become one of my family’s favorite multi-holiday decorating tools (see
I recommend laying each garland out as you’re working on the next one, so you can stagger the objects and wood slices and spacing and what-not.
The mini-checked gingham fabric were simply 3/4″ wide strips, about 6”-7” long, tied around the baker’s twine.
I tried to stagger the objects and spacing. Once or twice, I placed two wood slices on top of each other, but generally I placed a different object (e.g., bell, washi tape, or gingham strip) between the wood slices to give it some variety.
One of my favorite aspects of this decoration is that every glance paints a different picture. The strings spin a bit with the slightest breeze, which is fun.
The rustic heart window garland looks great in our peekaboo space between the entryway and the living room. It would look just as well hanging in any window or along a wall, too, although the wall would give it less “spinnability.”
Don’t be too precious in your measurements between objects. Its variation is part of its rustic charm, trust me.
Wash tape was simple folded in half over the baker’s twine, then trimmed to look like a flag.
Other objects you could consider using, if you had them on hand, are: wooden beads, gold bangle bracelets, simple ornaments, ribbons, pom-poms, woolen felt balls, wooden cut-outs of other shapes (such as hearts, since it is Valentine’s Day décor, after all), and whatever else brings you joy.
Happy Valentine’s Day DIYing.