December 3, 2015

Damage-Free Banister Decorating


I don't normally decorate for Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving. Something about wanting to keep the holidays separate and maintaining our family tradition and a bunch of other stuff. But I'm hosting my writers group Christmas party next week. This is a big deal for me. I have NEVER hosted an actual Christmas party. And this is the first year in our new house, so I wanted to make sure my decorations were up to par.

They weren't.

At least, not as-is. I had the garland and lights. I even had the burlap. But I had no way to attach it to my lovely new banisters without resorting to tape, wire, or wrapping the garland itself around the wood. Not happening. No way, no how.

So I dreamed up these beautiful felt garland holders. They are ridiculously easy to make, even if you don't have a sewing machine. And highly customizable, too! If you haven't noticed, that's a huge selling point for me for any project and/or recipe.

Materials

Felt
Thread
Velcro or other fastening method (buttons, snaps, etc.)
Needle and/or sewing machine
Scissors

Instructions

Measure around your banister. I lucked out. Mine was the right size to accommodate the length of a 9x12 piece of felt. I simply cut my background color (white) it into 4 12-inch strips. Each strip was 2-1/4 inches wide.

Then I cut my foreground color into 2x11-inch strips and the velcro into 1-inch strips.
I then sewed a piece of velcro on the end of each of the background color (white) strips.


This can be done by hand if you don't have a sewing machine. I sewed around the edge of the velcro. If you want it to be more secure, you can sew an 'X' across the middle as well.

Once the first piece of velcro was attached, I flipped the background color (white) over and sewed another piece of velcro on the other side. It should look like the photo below when you're finished.
I placed the foreground color (red) on the background color (white), butting it right up against the velcro... 

...and sewed it in place - just a simple seam around the edge. I used white for contrast, although now that I think about it, gold would have been awesome! 

Don't mind my crooked lines. I figured no one would see that part of it, so it didn't matter. My velcro is hiding in the white there. The lighting was being difficult. Totally not user error. No...not at all...
And tah-dah! The finished product!



 It doesn't look like much on its own, but put it on the banister with some garland and other fun stuff...


...and it looks AMAZING! I love how it hints at Santa's suit. Subtle and versatile. 

My banister required twenty hangers, but that was a matter of preference. You can make more or less, depending on the look you're going for. You can also hang other (lightweight) things from them, like the felt mittens in my title photo. Soft to the touch and easy on the wood finish. Perfect!

What's really cool about these hangers is you're not limited to the holidays. Pull them out for birthdays to hang streamers or plastic strips cut from cheap table cloths. Make some in every color. Add buttons or sequins. Jazz them up. The possibilities are endless!

Coming up...

Check back next week. We'll be talking about Christmas traditions and creating Christmas memories. I may even show you a few more tips and tricks I'm utilizing for holiday decorating. 

Until then, keep on dream chasing and dragon slaying!

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