Thursday, November 29, 2012

Up-cycled Holiday Wreath

Yeah, I know if you are like me, you fully INTEND to take the re-usable canvas bags with you every trip to the grocery store, but 9 times out of 10, you forget and end up using the awful plastic bags.  Also, if you are like me, you hate throwing them away, so you save them.  I mean, they make great liners for the bathroom trash bins. And they come in handy when cleaning out the cat's litter box.  But honestly, you will use.... what... 3 or 4 in a week, but bring home 18 more from your next trip to the grocery store.  These things MULTIPLY and before you know it, the pantry is overflowing with plastic bags, you finally get frustrated and throw them all away, only to have 30 more sitting in a chair in the corner a week later.  That is, hypothetically, if you're like me.

So here is a super-easy, cute holiday craft idea to use those plastic bags.  This isn't recycling, this is UPcycling!  Because this is WAY better than using the bag to line the bathroom trash bin and putting it in the trash after saving it because you didn't want to throw it away....

You will need;
An old wire coat hanger
About 25 - 30 plastic shopping bags
A nice pretty bow.

Here's how to make it;
Bend an old wire hanger into a circle. Or you can use any other type of wire that is sturdy yet can be shaped into a circle.   For mine, I simply twisted a wire hanger in half and bent it into a circle, leaving the hook on the top.

About 25 plastic grocery bags.  Any color will do, most are white or brown.  I had a bunch of the brown ones so that is what I used.

Scissors.  Cut each plastic bag into 4 strips.  Cut from the bottom of the bag to the top, and leave each strip folded in half the way it was when you cut it.  (so it's a double layered strip)

Tie each strip around the circle part of the clothes hanger or wire frame.  One knot is enough, and the ends will be sticking out.  It doesn't look pretty... yet.
Every 4 bags I tied a little piece of tinsel.  You could also add bells or other ornaments.

Once you have tied all the plastic strips all the way around the wire frame, trim the ends off.  I ended up cutting 2 or 3 inches off of the end of each strip.  Then you kinda "fluff" the edges out.  We added this pretty bow to the top.  Bend the hook of the clothes hanger down a bit, it's now the hook from which you hang your wreath!

If you wanted to get really fancy, before adding bows you could spray-paint the whole thing green or gold or whatever color you want.  But we were happy with ours just like this.  (my 13 year old daughter did most of the work on this one)  These would make great gifts for the kids to make for their teachers or grandparents!  More decorations could be added to make them more festive... use your imagination!  But hey, a great way to use those grocery bags!