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How To Make Easy DIY Christmas Wooden Bead & Dried Orange Garland

How To Make Easy DIY Christmas Wooden Bead & Dried Orange Garland

Beading is an extra special hobby around the Christmas period. I don’t know about you, but we love the chance to try new festive creations each year, and it is great opportunity to work with some different beads and supplies. Sure, we absolutely love the bold colours, fun textures and unique shapes that we worked with a lot in the Summer, but we are so excited to be experimenting with some new colours and styles in our Christmas bead projects. 

One design idea we have been playing around with over the past couple of weeks is, drum roll please… GARLANDS! I know what you’re thinking. “Don’t you usually supply funky and colourful beads for handmade jewellery?” Absolutely we do, but we have stepped out of our comfort zone to show you the versatility of our bead range, and how how they can be used for a lot of amazing projects this December. Christmas is the perfect time to embrace warm tones and wood textures, especially when it comes to festive decorations. Garlands are an easy, yet beautiful craft activity that everyone can enjoy. Whether they are being hung on Christmas trees, wrapped around the banisters, or draped over the mantelpiece, they can add something special and unique to your home. 

How To Make Easy DIY Christmas Wooden Bead & Dried Orange Garland

Today, we are going to take you through one design that we LOVE! This dried orange and wood bead garland is a trendy festive decoration to have in your homes this year, and is the perfect opportunity to add your own unique twists. Because this design is fairly simple, you can jazz it up anyway that you want to, whether it is intertwining fairy lights, adding ribbons or even adding a few colourful and wacky acrylic beads. But we are going to leave that part up to you! For now, we have put together an easy guide on how to make your own dried orange and wooden bead garland. Whether this is an activity for a rainy day, an opportunity to keep the kids busy or a chance to make handmade gifts, this is a simple, yet fun project everyone can enjoy! check out these 7 easy steps to making this beautiful garland. 

How To Make Easy DIY Christmas Wooden Bead & Dried Orange Garland

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Step 1

Preheat the oven to a low heat of 140C/120C fan/gas 1. Line 1 large (or 2 medium) trays with baking parchment paper, ready for the oranges.

Step 2

Cut all 4 large oranges into thin slices, measuring approx 1cm thick. You can use less than 4, however we found it to be good to have more than less on the first go round. Cutting thin slices of oranges is a little trickier than you might think! 

(Tip: Have some oranges left over? Squeeze them into a glass for some freshly squeezed juice. Garland making is thirsty work!)

Step 3

Place orange slices onto the baking parchment. Make sure to leave 2cm spaces between each slice to allow even distribution of heat.

If your oranges are especially fresh, you may find they are pretty juicy. Use some kitchen roll to dab the excess liquid off the oranges to optimise the drying process. (Tip: Try using oranges that are old, and going passed their best. This will mean they have naturally begun to dry)

Place the orange slices in the middle of the oven, for 1 hour, turning every 20 minutes. If they are not fully dried within an hour, give them another 30 minutes.

You know they are done when they have turned a dark, golden colour, and look crisp. If they are little soft, don't worry. Oranges will naturally dry over time, so it is better to undercook them slightly, so they can dry over time and last longer.  

Leave the oranges to cool. 

Step 4

Place your oranges in a bowl, and head on over to your craft space... The fun part is about to start! Grab your 1mm Waxed Beading Cord, and measure the length you want. Our instructions are designed for mantelpiece decorations, so for this, we would recommend 2 metre length (this leaves a little extra, just in case!). 

Create a basic loop at one end of the thread that is approximately 4cm in length. This will be used to hang your garland on your mantelpiece. It is a good idea to do this at the beginning, so your beads won't fall off when they are being threaded (we all know the pain!).

Next, at the other end of your cord, you can either thread a beading needle (or a standard needle if it is big enough for a 1mm thread), or use a lighter to gently scorch the end. 

(Tip: Gently burning the end of your cord will stop it from fraying, making it easier to thread through the beads)

Step 5

Using your 10mm & 18mm burlywood beads, and your bicone wooden beads, begin to thread them onto the Waxed Cord. There are endless combinations you could try with these beads, but we liked starting with x1 bicone wood bead, followed by x4 10mm burlywood beads x1 18mm burlywood, then another x4 10mm burlywood beads, and finally back to x1 bicone wood bead. See image for further clarification. 

This is just one design you can do. Why not try a few different ones to see which you prefer? As long as there is a level of symmetry between sizes, and the number of each bead, any pattern will look great!  

Step 6

Now you have a solid pattern of beads, you are now going to want to add an orange slice. If you are not using a needle, grab yourself a cocktail stick, and pierce two holes on opposite sides of the orange, big enough to thread your cord through. You are going to want to thread the orange through both holes, so it sits centrally on the cord. See the image below for clarification.

 

Step 7

Now you have created a bead pattern, and securely threaded your first orange slice, you are going to want to repeat this process until you reach the length that you want for your garland. Once you have completed your creation, replicate the knotted loop you did at the other end of your cord. And Voila! You have a completed Garland. 

 

This is such a great beading activity that everyone can enjoy, especially over the Christmas period. but don't forget, this is just one design idea! As long as the hole size is appropriate, you can work with any and every bead with this project. Whether you want to use up left over glass beads, add a pop of colour with acrylic beads, or keep it dainty with seed beads, this is a craft activity that can work around your style. 

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