Thursday, December 20, 2018

Wooden Bead Garland Refresh


As a child of the 80s, I saw a few Christmas traditions and decorations fall in and out of style. One of those was wooden bead garlands on Christmas trees. They were very popular in the 80s but were replaced with ribbons in the 90s and never quite regained their popularity. While shopping at a thrift store after Christmas last year, they had sets of wooden bead garland that were an exact match to a string I had from my childhood, so I picked up a couple more strings for a dollar.


I figured it would be really easy to spray paint the beads a single color to lose the 80s blue and rustic vibe. I ran out of my good silver spray paint (which would have been super schnazzy), so I opted for bright red instead.


I used a couple of big boxes and coiled the beads around the bottom and sprayed on a coat, and then another coat, and then another coat. A couple of the beads didn't want to take color. It was also annoyingly just above freezing, so I had to keep bringing the boxes inside to set. They stayed tacky for a long time.


Then I had to do my best to flip them over and repeat the process, but the beads rotate and there are just enough of them that flipping them over wasn't an easy process. I stood outside flipping every bead to see if it had been sprayed on both sides. It was a pain, but in the end I was left with 3 lengths of wooden bead garland in a lovely shade or red.


Truth be told, I probably should have 4 lengths of garland for the size of my tree (which is a 6 1/2 footer--nothing enormous), but I was able to get it around the tree and add a nice pop of color. If I had to do it over again, I'd probably paint this one by hand. I'm generally very pro-spray painting as it provides a nice smooth finish and dries quicker than regular paint, but this one was tricky with the rotating beads and the colder early December weather. Of course, this week it's been crazy warm and would have worked much better for spray painting--oh well. :) 


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