Dollar Store Spring Wreath
There’s a Fungus Amungus

I was interviewed by someone today.  They wanted to know about why people love Dollar Stores so much. I didn’t really have an answer.  I wasn’t sure.

I suppose it’s the thrill of the hunt.   Finding something really GREAT at the Dollar Store is like finding an extra chicken McNugget in your box.  It’s not really worth anything and you probably don’t need it, but you’re still incredibly excited that it’s there.

Most importantly Dollar Stores provide inspiration.   If you’re creative and have access to a Dollar Store you can make just about anything you need in life.  Except math skills.  No  matter how hard you try, nothing you hot glue together from the Dollar Store will end up resembling math skills.

Today I have for you my most favourite Dollar Store project I’ve ever done.

Behold … the Spring Wreath made entirely out of Dollarama crap.

Materials

1 Pool Noodle

5 bags of Spanish Moss

Hot glue gun and sticks

1 small wooden dowel

1 larger wooden dowel or piece of hard plastic tube

Duct Tape

Toothpicks

(Non Dollarama materials)

Additional Moss (found mine outside, plus some natural Reindeer Moss I had stashed in the basement)

Mushrooms (Grocery Store)

Old piece of wood (I used a hunk of barnboard)

Here we go!

 

 

Grab yourself a pool noodle.  Yeah, that thing you play with in the pool.

 

Cut a dowel or piece of plastic pipe to 6 or 7 inches.

 

Slather the end of the pipe with hot glue.

 

Shove it in the end of the pool noodle.

 

Hot glue the other end of the dowel/pipe and stick it in the other end of the noodle.  Also hot glue the ends of the noodle for good measure.

 

Shove everything together to form a wreath.  As you can see the glue can only take so much tension.  It’ll stay stuck, but you may have a portion that won’t.  Not a problem.

 

 

Wrap the crease with some duct tape to make the wreath perfectly secure.

 

Ta da.   You are now the proud owner of a 17″ styrofoamish wreath for the total cost of around $2.

 

Gather all your moss.  The Dollar Store moss, plus whatever you can scrounge.

 

Heat that glue gun up and start gluing.

 

 

This will happen.  It’ll probably hurt.  Suck it up.  You’re makin’ a wreath here, not pettin’ kittens and jumping over rainbows.  No pain no gain.

 

A few minutes later … your wreath will be covered with moss.  Lookin’ good.

 

 

Around the bottom base of the wreath add in your additional moss.  The stuff you’ve gathered.  Not mandatory.  But if you don’t do this part you’ll look less impressive.  And … if given the choice would you rather look more or less impressive?

 

 

At this point it’s easier to get an idea of what your wreath looks like if you work with it hanging on a wall.  So go hang it on a wall.

 

 

Take a look and add and remove your moss as needed.  Either hot glue it or use metal U pins to stick the moss in the styrofoam.

 

 

Once you’re happy with the way the base of your wreath looks, get a bunch of mushrooms.  Just regular old mushrooms from the grocery store.  I have a selection of Oyster mushrooms, Shitake, Button mushrooms etc. etc.  Total cost of mushrooms was about $5.

 

 

 

Stick a toothpick into the base of a mushroom.

 

 

Place your first mushroom.  Perhaps it will be your only mushroom.  Even the single mushroom looks incredibly cute.  You can just leave it like that.  Or … you could add more mushrooms.

 

 

Like this.

 

 

Hang it wherever you want.  Obviously this isn’t going to last forever, so if you wanna show your mushroom wreath off do it right away.  Maybe call the neighbours in.  Tell them you wanna show them your noodle.  Men might want to use this exact phrase cautiously.

 

 

 

If you’re feeling particularly adventurous you can use the smaller dowel and a piece of wood to make a stand for the wreath.  It’s so easy if you can’t do it you might want to go back to petting kittens.  Just find the appropriate drill bit for the size of dowel you’ve bought, drill a hole in your wood board and hammer the dowel in.  I also stained my dowel so it came close to matching the colour of the barn board.  Then smash your wreath onto it.  Carefully of course.

 

In my opinion there is absolutely nowhere this wreath doesn’t look good.  And as far as I’m concerned it’s the best use in the world for mushrooms.  Certainly better than eating them.

 

 

 

Your mushrooms will start to wilt slightly after about a day.  This is what you’d call a special occasion wreath.

Think of it as a replenish-able living arrangement.   If mushrooms don’t happen to be your thing, don’t worry.  Over the next couple of days I’ll show you other things you can do with the moss wreath.
The other way Dollar Stores and chicken McNuggets are similar, by the way?  Neither one of them tastes like chicken.  But I love them both.

97 Comments

  1. Amie says:

    That is the most hysterical thing you have ever done! Karen you are a constant source of amusement to me!

  2. Karen says:

    Amie – Thank you! I think. I love my mushroom wreath. I wish you could see it in real life. It’s shockingly beautiful. Especially considering it’s actually a pool noodle. ~ karen

  3. Pati says:

    A pool noodle!!…Genius!! Awesome idea! “There’s a fungus amungus” Love that!!
    You’re one fungi!!…or fungirl…whatever.

  4. Pati says:

    Karen do you remember this show? http://www.memyhouseandi.tv/me_my_house_and_i/
    I just keep thinking a show like this would be perfect for you…I used to watch it all the time. You remind me of Brigitte and are certainly as funny and talented as she was on her show. Just my two cents…

  5. Karen says:

    Pati – Brigette and I were both nominated for a Gemini for Best Host the same year. She, for hosting Me, My House and I. And me for Stylin’ Gypsies (a makeover show). So YES, I remember her show! We both lost to Sean Majumder who for some reason was in our category. Networks just don’t want to do shows where you actually learn stuff anymore. They don’t think audiences want to watch it. I disagree … but I’m not running a network so … 🙂 ~ karen!

  6. Jennifer says:

    So *that’s* what those pool noodles were doing in the ‘fix a slamming screen door’ post — mystery solved. Love it! Will definitely try this one, perhaps even without the ‘shrooms. Looks fab on the stand, too.

  7. Karen says:

    Jennifer – I wondered if anyone would wonder about those pool noodles! I highly recommend the mushrooms. Honestly. I’ll give you the $5 to try it. SO much fun and you won’t believe how great it looks in real life. Hand over heart. ~ K!

  8. Jess says:

    If you have it, hockey tape works really well on noodles instead of duct tape since it’s more fabricky (that’s a word, apparently). We made a ring toss this way and it works real well.

  9. Bev says:

    I think we ALL wondered, I had a little chuckle to myself and made a mental note to look out for them in up coming posts. Yay! You didn’t make me wait long, love the mushy’s even appropriate for autumn down here :o)

    Ps. I’d watch ANY show where you got to teach us stuff.

  10. Wanda says:

    There’s a fungus amungus?! Are you a Dr. Seuss protégé?!
    Hilarious. But seriously wondering what kind of mushrooms you’re using and what you’re doing with them to come up with the idea of using a pool noodle as your base.
    Don’t get me wrong – it’s brilliant! Just sayin’…

  11. chrysanthi says:

    you can hung painted eggs(empty from the inside ofcourse) instead of mushrooms for easter too!!!
    that is very nice anyway karen!and i adore mushrooms as a decoration object everywhere!

  12. jonquil says:

    Genius. Sheer genius.

    If only we had Dollar stores here in France…

  13. magali says:

    I think you may have pulled an Internet and lied. I have a hard time believing it only takes a few minutes to hot glue the moss onto the noodle. At least it wouldn’t take me a few minutes considering how long it took me to finish my pompom wreath!

  14. Brilliant! I don’t do crafts any more as I am trying to focus on painting (having been chronically unfocused most of my life) but I love using items for unintended purposes and this is such a great idea. Do you come up with these things ahead of time or do you have a flash of inspiration in the aisles of Dollarama or do you spend hours mulling over all the possibilities while browsing? I come up with all sorts of ideas and end up doing none of them so it is great to view the results of a shockingly creative person who gets stuff done! Your wreath looks fabulous.

  15. Michelle says:

    Well, now you’ve done it. I was so incredibly pleased with my own Dollarstore wreath, but now that I’ve seen what you can do, and I’m no longer as impressed with myself. Boo 🙁
    Oh well, I guess I’ll have to make one like yours 🙂
    For comparison here’s mine:
    http://sweetsuite10.wordpress.com/2011/04/03/diy-dollarstore-easter-wreath/

  16. Muscratlove says:

    I don’t know, I think those mushrooms would look great even after they dry out!
    (Then again, this is coming from someone who had had the same cedar wreath for 3 years because they think it’s just as beautiful when bronzey brown.)

    I have a jar of dried chantrelles that were picked in the forest last summer that I am unable to eat, they are so beautiful.

    Nice job, Karen.

  17. I wondered about the pool noodles in your previous picture, too! And *this* use for them is a fantastic idea! Definitely cheaper than the same size wreath form you could buy at Hobby Lobby…wait, does Canada have Hobby Lobby?? If not, I am so, so sorry. It’s one of my favorite places in the whole world.

  18. Leslie says:

    Karen!

    You are brilliant.

    I’m totally going to make this one.

    LOVE IT!

  19. Mary says:

    Karen! Could you dunk the mushrooms in mod podge and make them last forever that way?

  20. Karen says:

    Chrysanthi – I’m gonna give a couple of more options next week for the wreath for those of you who want to go a little more frou frou. 🙂 ~ karen

  21. Karen says:

    Jonquil – I’d trade the Dollar Stores for the restaurants any day. Stick with France! I’m sure you can find a pool noodle, some moss and *definitely* interesting looking mushrooms in France. Dollar Store or not. Give it a go! 🙂 ~ karen

  22. Karen says:

    Magali – Hah! “Pulled an Internet”. No, honestly it doesn’t take very long to hot glue the moss. You just drizzle hot glue on the wreath then smash the moss into it. Probably 10 or 15 minutes to do. Then a few extra minutes to do the moss “bed” in the centre. ~ karen!

  23. Karen says:

    Thanks Laurel! – Usually the ideas pop into my head. The idea of making a wreath out of a pool noodle came out of necessity. It’s hard to find large styrofoam wreaths unless I drive all the way to Michaels, and then they’re too much money. So … the pool noodle popped into my head. The moss and mushrooms just seemed like a natural idea for a Spring wreath to me. Something a little different than the typical pastels, eggs and birdies. I’m not huge on Easter decorations, I think they’re kindda gross, so I wanted something not so typical. ~ karen

  24. Karen says:

    Michelle – Don’t be ridiculous. Your wreath looks great! I was kind of afraid to look at it for fear of it being hideous. But it wasn’t! It’s VERY nice. Everyone will tell you so. 🙂 ~ karen

  25. Karen says:

    Thanks Muscratlove – I’ll keep y’al updated as to the mushroom progress. I literally just made this wreath a day ago, so I can’t report on *exactly* how long the mushrooms will last. So far so good. ~ karen

  26. Karen says:

    Leslie – Hah! Thank you. ~ karen

  27. Karen says:

    Mary – Mmm. For some reason I don’t think so. Because they’re so high in humidity. However … having said that … it’s worth a shot. Try it! What’s the worst that could happen? ~ karen

  28. Jennifer says:

    Your loyal readers are always in a constant state of wonder about you! (If I use mushrooms, *I* will give *you* the $5. But I do love the idea of something that’s not bunny rabbits and eggs…)

  29. Asheyna says:

    Hehe, lady I wish I had your style. Thankfully by careful stalkage of the blog I can get it! This is a fantastic idea and I am going to be stealing it 😀

  30. Karen says:

    Asheyna – Thanks! Steal away … that’s what I’m here for. ~ karen

  31. Devin says:

    I also wondered about the noodles!

  32. Karen says:

    Wanda – Yes. My boyfriend asked me the same question. 🙂 ~ karen

  33. Shauna says:

    And, the bonus…when summer comes, your wreath will float and can be used as a life preserver – it’s the craft that just keeps giving back;) Seriously though, I love it. I think I may feature it (with lovely links back) on my blog;)

  34. Kim says:

    Awesome! As always!

  35. Karen says:

    Thank you Kim. ~ k!

  36. Gina says:

    This looks great ! You give hope to all- even those without math skills. Hope your thumb is healing, hot glue burns are painful. Next time quickly plunge it into an icy drink.

  37. Trysha says:

    My husband walked in while I was reading this and he asked if it was a weed wreath. “Yes, honey. She’s hot gluing marijuana to a pool noodle.”

    I’ve never been in a dollar store.

  38. Julie shinnick says:

    Yeah Bev, I thought ‘how appropriate for Aussie Autumn’ too.
    And yes there are WAY TOO MANY cooking shows around, we need more TV shows where you are encouraged to actually make something that you can’t eat! _ steps off soapbox

  39. Julie shinnick says:

    Michelle! I concur with our fabulous friend!

    It IS very nice and so colourful! oh wow inspiration everywhere! yay!

  40. Karen says:

    Trysha – OMG, that made me laugh hysterically! Now. Let’s talk about this dollar store thing … ~ karen

  41. Theresa says:

    mushrooms brilliant!

  42. Michelle R. says:

    I think your blog/website is freaking awesome. I LOVE IT! It’s the best thing since, well…dollar stores!?! 😉

    I just wanted to drop a note to say how much I love coming onto your site and catching up on what you’ve done or are in the process of doing (whether or not I do it myself). I can’t remember how I stumbled upon your blog but so glad I did. And now I forgot what else I was going to say. Oh well, keep up the good blogging.

  43. Karen says:

    Michelle R. – Well THAT was a fun comment! Thanks. 🙂 ~ karen

  44. Cleme says:

    Love Love Love this idea!! looks fabulous!!
    As always, you absolutely deliver great stuff!!

    On a completley unrelated note, I have to say special Thanks! to you because, you see, I just finished reading Geek Love… Ordered it on Amazon, waited a few weeks for it to arrive (I live in Mexico) and when it did, started on it right away! Great literature recommendation, Karen! If it weren’t for that post I don’t think I would have ever read it, now it’s my no.1 favourite book. So, THANK YOU, Karen!! 😀

  45. Michelle says:

    Thanks Karen (and Julie)!

    It’s always nice to have someone other than your mother tell you something you made is nice – especially if it comes from a person who’s style you admire.
    BTW – I’m not saying my mom doesn’t have good taste (she does), but there’s that annoying mom-rule that says that they must like everything you do 🙂

  46. Nicole says:

    You are awesome.

  47. Karen says:

    Nicole – Oh stop. 🙂 ~ karen

  48. Pam'a says:

    I think you must be using HIGH-temp hot glue if you can drizzle an area of any size at a time. If you use a low-temp glue gun you wouldn’t burn your fingers, but it solidifies in nanoseconds.

    So like you already said, Karen… No Pain, No Gain!

    p.s. GENIUS idea, that pool noodle. A styro wreath would cost 10x that much.

  49. Eva says:

    this is the coolest thing I’ve see in a while
    guess what I’ll be doing this weekend LOL
    thanks

  50. Eddie says:

    I think it’s great, very earthy, I’m gonna add it to my collecion of knomes…..if it dosen’t seem too creepy.

    PS. Just recently discovered your blog, and LOVE IT keep doin what cha do.

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