Wood Bead Garlands are strung all over the place (hehehe) in cute little boutiques, home stores, and Etsy! Today, I’m going to show you how to make a coastal farmhouse wood bead garland for a fraction of the cost!
It’s early morning where I sit writing this post… 5:30am to be exact. I’m trying to up-my-game by going to bed a bit earlier and waking up earlier, as well. What about you…Are you a morning person or night owl? Well, this morning I’m up early so I can share with you how I created this farmhouse wood bead garland… with a twist! I went a bit coastal, too, and even gave the beads an ombre twist!
If you want to check out another easy and affordable farmhouse DIY, check out how I made this Farmhouse Cake Plate from dollar store items!
Have you seen these garlands all over the home décor stores, cute little boutiques, AND Etsy? I have… Anywhere from $15-$50!!! I’ll tell ya, this girl ain’t gonna pay $15 for a string of wood, let alone $50! I knew I could find the beads for a lot less, AND add my own style, so off to Pinterest (then Amazon) I went!
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WHAT YOU NEED
- Wooden Beads (16mm and 10mm… you could go even bigger for a chunkier look)
- DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paint (I used the color Shoreline (a swag gift from DecoArt a the Haven Conference, but there are LOTS of colors to choose from)
- Varathane Wood Stain (I used Weathered Gray to achieve a ‘cooler’ tone… again, swag from Haven!)
- Small Chip Paint Brush (actually, I would use any cheap ‘throw-away’ brush… I don’t want to clean it if I don’t have to! 😉 )
- Cotton (or Jute) Twine I had this on hand, so there was no cost here (I used 2mm, but this one is smaller, and might be wee bit easier to work with, however, I like how the 2mm looks)
- Large Threading Needle (TOTALLY optional)
- Hot Glue Gun (This is similar to the one I use, and I love it! This is the updated version.)
- Lint Free Cloths
- Small Mixing Sticks (I had these on hand, but they work great for a lot of projects)
- Large Paint Mixing Stick
- Small bowl
The first thing to do is mix the DecoArt Americana acrylic paint with a bit of water in a small bowl. Watering-down the paint will give the washed-ombre look! I used a small fruit bowl and added about a tablespoon of paint with about 2 teaspoons of water then stirred it around with a small mixing stick. I then placed one of the lint free cloths near the bowl.
The second thing to do is cut a piece of twine about 3 times the length you want for your finished garland to be. This is your “bead string”. You want to create a ‘needle’ at each end of the string, which makes for an easier time of threading the beads. Cut the end of the twine, at a slant, on both ends. Then add a little bit of hot glue to one end and form a ‘point’ by carefully and quickly tapping the glue between your fingers. Repeat for the other end. (I’m sure you can get a big enough needle for this, but I didn’t have one on hand.)
Place your beads in the paint mixture and quickly, but gently, slosh (yes, I said slosh 😉 ) them around until they are covered in paint. Then take the beads out of the paint and place them on the lint free cloth, fold the cloth over the beads, then vigorously roll the beads around in the cloth to wipe off as much paint as you can. They should come out looking like this:
Quick and messy… I’m all for that! DecoArt Americana acrylic paint was SUPER easy to work with, and I loved the results!
Do this for both sizes of beads. 🙂
(This photo is actually after I stained the larger beads… oops!)
Using your large mixing stick (I used a normal paint stick), slowly mix the Varathane stain in the can (you don’t want any splashing going on). Also, if you try to shake the can to mix the stain, some of the pigment may remain at the bottom, so using a stir stick is kinda important.
When the large beads are dry from the acrylic ‘wash’ paint, take a small stick (my mixing sticks worked great for this, but a wooden skewer, etc. would work just as well) and put it through the bead. Then, using the chip brush, paint the bead with the Varathane stain (it doesn’t have to *completely* cover), and, again, quickly wipe it off with a clean lint free cloth. (I wiped it off this time, as opposed to rolling it around… it took off more of the stain and left more of the ombre effect).
I did the staining on these beads one-at-a-time because I wanted to make sure I could wipe most of the stain off (this quick-dry Varathane stain dries 3x faster than your average stain). I think it would have been more difficult to achieve the look I wanted had I used the same process as the acrylic paint.
HOW TO MAKE A TASSEL
I thought using cotton twine would give the garland a bit more of a coastal farmhouse look, but you can use jute, or any other type of twine that might make you smile! Hehe!
If you want to see more of my coastal farmhouse ‘feel’… take a look at the Spring Tour Part 1 and Part II of My Wee Abode.
- Take the twine and wrap it around your palm about 10-15 times, then remove it from your hand and cut it from the spool. Set aside.
- Take your bead string and thread one large bead onto the twine.
- Now take the bead string and put it through the middle of the bundle of twine. (See photo below)
- Next, feed the bead string back through the bead and pull snugly. You may have to twist and turn the twine to get this, but it does work. (Hint: I also left some ‘slack’ on the long strand and after putting the end of short strand in the bead, pulled through the slack to help feed the short strand through… hope that makes sense!) For added security, you can add a drop of hot glue to the bead where the top of the tassel will hit. The top of your tassel has now been formed! (See photo below)
- Add a tiny bit of hot glue at the other end of the bead, pull the small strand snugly through and clip off.
- Take another small piece of twine (maybe six inches) and wrap it around the bundle, close to the tied end. Then tie it and secure it with a bit of hot glue. Clip-off the leftover ends. (See photo below)
- Now, cut through the bottom end of the bundle to make the tassely part (yes, I think a made a new word… tassely). Trim to the size you desire. Ta da! A tassel!
(This picture was taken BEFORE I figured out an easier way to make the tassels… just pay attention to the wrap part. 😉 It’s that 5 year thing again, peeps!)
STRINGING YOUR BEADS
Hint: I took a skewer (for lack of a better word), and turned it through each bead before I started threading them. This made it easier to get the twine through.
- Tie your first knot at the base of the large bead. Then string a small, large, small bead on the string, and knot again. Repeat for the length of your garland, leaving a large bead at the end of the strand.
- Create another tassel for the end using the same steps in the tassel instructions above.
And VOILA! We are done!
Styling two ways….
I actually love this vignette sitting on my media console. Picked up about 6 starfish at HomeGoods… not one broken piece on them! Woot!
Love me some driftwood, too!
Wanna know where you can get this printable????
You can get this printable, and all my seasonal printables in my free Printables Library. Simply subscribe to My Wee Abode, and get the password delivered straight to your inbox, along with all the other fun offered through the blog!
So… this garland cost approximately $5-10, I got exactly what I wanted, and I have supplies leftover for another project or five! Not bad, huh? Hope you enjoyed learning how to make a coastal farmhouse wood bead garland! What would you do to add your own flair to this diy project?
Remember to Pin it for later!
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