Halloween Wreath

Halloween is one of those holidays you either love or hate.

Unless you’re me, in which case you both love and hate it. In a related note, I also both love and hate exercise, John Grisham novels, Spanx and America’s Next Top Model.

When it comes to Halloween decorations I’m not big on the cartooney, cutesy stuff.  Think more Addams Family, less Munsters.  For one thing The Addams Family were infinitely more elegant than the Munsters.  Candelabras, smoking cauldrons and marble floored ballrooms.  They had better taste than the Carringtons when you think of it.

Creepy really can be beautiful if you’re focused. And creepy but beautiful was exactly what I wanted for the Halloween wreath I planned to make this year.

So when I eased my way past the people wearing slippers as actual footwear in the Halloween aisle of my local Dollar Store, I had to keep a sharp eye.  Only look at things that had qualities I would have in my house on any given day, let alone Halloween.

What I came away with were some black skulls covered in sparkles, 8 black feather boas and some black cotton gauze.

The Dollar Store didn’t sell any styrofoam wreaths big enough for what I wanted to do, so I hijacked a garbage bin behind a furniture store and grabbed 3 sheets of styrofoam to make my own wreath.

And here’s how I did it and exactly what I used.

Materials

A Few Black Sparkly Skulls – $ 1 each


8 Black Feather Boas – $2 each.

Black Gauze – $1

3 Sheets of Styrofoam – Free

If you choose to make your own styrofoam wreath form because of your excessive cheapness (and laziness … couldn’t be bothered to drive to Michael’s) you have to glue your sheets of styrofoam together.

This way you end up with a nice, thick wreath.  Not an unnice, skinny wreath.

I used 3, 1″ pieces of styrofoam to make a HUGE wreath.  You don’t have to be as excessive as me.  I tend towards excessiveness.

After you glue all your pieces together with regular white glue, let it dry overnight.

The next morning, when you wake up bright and cheery, full of vim and vigour, stretching your arms over your head just like they do in breakfast cereal commercials, your styrofoam will be perfectly adhered, ready for shaping into a wreath.

The first thing you’ll need to do is regress to grade 6 math class and make one of those circle making things out of a string, a pin and a marker.

Do the same thing in the centre with a smaller circle.

Grab the trusty 1970’s electric knife you bought at a church bazaar and get ‘er revved up.  Maybe stretch your arms over your head again, just for good measure.

Cut the outer styrofoam circle.  An electric knife is the easiest way to cut styrofoam.  I’m not saying you won’t have flying balls of styrofoam everywhere.  It just makes it easier.  Be forewarned that you will be trying to clean up styrofoam balls that have static clinged themselves to every part of you and your kitchen.   For the next week.

Good job.  Now your outer circle is cut out perfectly.  I’m quite impressed with you.

Now cut the centre circle out.

In  just moments I’m going to wrap the black feather boas around the wreath, but to make sure they stay where you want them you should cut some wire into 2 inch pieces …

… and then bend them over so they’re like modified clippy things.

Start wrapping and clipping your boas around the wreath.

When you’ve applied approximately 17 birds worth, you’ll have something that looks like this.

If you need a little more room in the centre of your wreath, just clip away some of the feathers so you have a bigger opening.

Allow the cat to court it’s newfound love for a minute or two then shoo the cat away.

I randomly cut small pieces of the black gauze and then pinned them “pleasingly” on the wreath.  Just wherever I thought it looked good.  It was at this point I had to show some restraint, remembering I wanted a classy and elegant Halloween wreath.  My “excessive” gene had to be stomped down for this one.

Every so often hold your wreath up to see what it’ll look like hanging.

The sparkly skulls I got from the Dollar store had tooling and ribbons around their necks and came on sticks.  However, I didn’t like where the sticks were, so I cut them off …

… and placed them where I wanted them, in the backs of the skulls.  I cannot even begin to tell you how much I love these sparkly styrofoam skulls.  They make me want to grin and stretch my arms above my head like I’m about to have a delicious bowl of sugar cereal.

This is another place I had to show some restraint.  If you want to know the truth, I actually bought 8 skulls expecting to use them all and thought it was entirely possible I’d need to go buy more.  But when it came down to it the wreath actually looked better with only a few skulls.  Too many of them and they weren’t as noticeable.

Hang it on the door, bat your eyelashes at  Gomez and call it a night.

Oh yes!  And I put mini-lights into it for nighttime viewing.

If you plan on doing this yourself  for Halloween keep a couple of things in mind.  The wreath will end up costing you $20 – $25 depending on where you get your supplies but you can use it year after year.  So all in all it’s pretty inexpensive.  Even if it costs you $30 … it isn’t disposable so that’s a deal and a half really.  It’ll last you as long as you can keep your cats from humping it to death.

Also, improvise.  If you can’t get feather boas, use all black gauze.  If you can’t find sparkly skull heads, use crows or spiders or anything else that gives you a tight squeeze, cool breeze … leaves you with the shiverees  Don’t worry if you can’t find the exact same materials I have.  Just get things you like.   As you can see, I happen to think the wreath looks best if it’s monochromatic.  An all white version of this would also be beautiful and unexpected.

And on *that* very Martha Stewart note … happy wreathing.

Love Morticia.


133 Comments

  1. Robyn says:

    I’m in love. 🖤 This is the bestest wreath I’ve ever seen. Killer job! I’m totally gonna make one.

  2. michelle says:

    Just saw this really want to make it but this post is 6 years old. Wondering how many Boa’s you had to use?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Michelle. I can’t quite remember but I have a feeling it was 5 or 6. If you had heftier boas it wouldn’t take as many. Mine were dollar store boas so they weren’t exactly full, lol. ~ karen!

  3. rozwody says:

    This site was… how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something which helped me.

    Cheers! rozwody http://podzial-majatku257.alltdesign.com

  4. Alexis says:

    Love this tutorial and your dialog!!! I hope I can find the boas.

  5. Beth says:

    What are the styrofoam wreath measurements, inner and outer diameters?

  6. Sue says:

    Thanks for the inspiration! I made my own version for Halloween 2014.

  7. sandy bombardief says:

    Love, Love, Love the wreath

  8. Terri Z says:

    I just made this tonight and LOVE it!! I found black boas at The $5 Spot for just $3 each!! Michaels had them for $8. each. I’m sure Hobby Lobby has them as well. I only used 2 and think it was plenty. Cant wait to hang it tomorrow!

    • Karen says:

      That’s great! I made mine 4 years ago and I STILL hang it and love it. And people still comment on it. How many boas you need depends on how thick and lush they are. The ones currently at my dollar store seem to consist of a piece of string with 4 feathers barely hanging off of it, lol. Have fun hanging your wreath and thanks for letting me know you did it! ~ karen

  9. JennyB says:

    Mine didn’t come out quite as dark and cool but I think it still came out cool, thanks for the idea!

  10. HVD says:

    Love this project!

  11. Marlene says:

    You are a hoot!! Love your instructions. And the fact that you can decorate without getting two or three full time jobs is great! Thank you.

  12. Where on Earth did you find boas for $2!? I have scoured the planet and the cheapest ones I can find are at Walmart for $7. Boooooooo! 🙁

  13. Betty says:

    This is really most excellent. It looks like a Victorian opera prop. You really have a gift and an eye.
    You should consider set design!
    Betty

  14. Cindy Casique says:

    I totally love this wreath! I am in the midst of moving, so I will be making it soon to show on my door next year. I can’t wait to check the dollar stores. Thanks again for sharing.

  15. Nancy Eileen says:

    Love it!

  16. Amanda says:

    Love it! How did you come to the conclusion of the styrofoam being free? Where did you it free?

    Thanks!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Amanda – Most furniture stores, etc. get things with styrofoam packing. Just go in and ask for it or go out back to where their garbage bin is! ~ karen

  17. Liss says:

    Love! Enjoyed reading your tutorial blog on making the wreath! Planning an adult happy hours this year and going to adorn my door with this master piece!

  18. Pam says:

    The Dollar Tree has black glittery skulls right now,, I just saw them this morning and now I need to go back for some =) I truely love this idea. Thank you, Pam

  19. debbie says:

    I love it. I am inspired for Xmas too but can’t use skulls for that…
    I love the screen door. Like clothesline, they are finally becoming acceptable again! Great site

  20. This is so clever! I’ve linked your post on my blog today, in “A Not-So-Spendy Halloween,” so that others can enjoy your creativity too. Thanks for sharing this good idea.

  21. Sandra says:

    This post was featured on COASAHMom for Pinnerific Thursday! http://www.coasahmom.com/2012/10/pinnerific-thursday.html

  22. Kristin says:

    Love your wreath, and used it to make one of our own! Instead of skulls, we used glow-in-the-dark bats, shiny spiders and purple twinkle lights, and hung a big fuzzy orange spider from the bottom of the wreath…Thanks so much for the inspiration!

  23. Kat says:

    Me again I made another Halloween Wreath this time from a dollar stores bag of bones and stuff!!! But the real reason I am back is just to let you know I do enjoy this “site” (see I even spelled it right this time) anyway I have never read a blogger persons blog before, kinda thought it would be quite boring reading someones everyday stuff! But I must admit it is entertaining and inspirational. Today I thought I would start at the beginning and go through it all to date but sorry to say that did not happen! I was all over the pages couldn’t stay on track at all but had a great time and thanks for the ride!

  24. SILVIA says:

    I adore them. I had to improvise a lot. I used roses and put the skulls in the middle. It looks great, but I still love yours very much. I got the inspiration from yours! Great job!

  25. Deb says:

    Karen, I think I have a girl crush on you! Not only do I love your wreath, but the way you think and write make you my soul mate! Lol. My husband need never know. Wink, wink.
    Seriously though, I can’t wait to give a version of this wreath a try. Thanks for the inspiration.

  26. Kat says:

    I made my wreath and I done you proud it looks perfect. Note to self… don’t wear a white wool sweater when playing with dollar store black boas, at least I had the sense to work on it outside where all the fluffy stuff is blowin’ in the wind. I only bled once when I stabbed myself with the plastic stick poking the skull into the foam. Hah! who needs fake blood when I got the real stuff!!! Thanks again for the great ideas my next project is going to be those adorable toothy pumpkin carvings you did!

  27. Kat says:

    I just found this sight and an hour of my time has just dissappeared!!! EEK I have to get ready for work!!! I am so making this wreath! Great stuff on your site and I will definitely be back and thanks for a ton of ideas!!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks for stopping by Kat. You can subscribe to get all my posts if you put your email address into the “subscribe” box on the right sidebar. Don’t worry .. the only thing you get are my posts. No random other stuff. ~ karen!

  28. Caitlin says:

    Karen,

    Good idea, i’ll go for a hunt on a battery operated one. I’m sure i’ll find one. The only plug I have outside is near the corner of my house, quite a ways for an extension cord haha (may cause a trick or treater to trip lol knowing my luck). Perfect! Thanks for the awesome idea! I’m excited to give this a try!

    Caitlin

  29. Caitlin says:

    Hey Karen,
    Love the wreath! Can’t wait to give it a try. I have a question in regards to your lights. I have some of those eerie purple lights but realized i have to plug it in to get the lights to work haha. You hung yours from the door? What did you do with your lights?

    • Karen says:

      Caitlin – I ran an extension cord from one of my outdoor plugs and then just tucked it up the edge of the door. I think I stuck nails into the wood frame and pushed the cord behind the nails so it stayed put. Then just make sure the plug end of the lights is positioned near the end of the wreath and plug em in! If you don’t have an outdoor plug just use a battery operated set of lights. ~ karen

  30. cred says:

    I am posting here to comment on this year’s halloween giveaway- didn’t want to comment on today’s post since I’ve already made your awesome wreath so I don’t need to enter.
    Buuuut…. I needed to mention how much I enjoyed your video. Well done and entertaining! And I love the idea of your diy wreath as a giveaway.
    I love my halloween wreath (thank-you) and did also make a white one with some sparkly chartreuse & aqua glass balls for christmas. The feather boas make lovely wreaths- thanks for the creativity!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Cred! I’m so happy to hear you made the wreath. I love to know that people are actually *doing* the things I show them and not just reading about them. That is the whole point of the site afterall. 🙂 ~ karen!

      • cred says:

        Oh yes, I am an excellent copy-cat. I could start my own blog titled “Karen’s Vision, My Version!”
        I have done enough projects for 6 months of posts already- such as:
        -valentine heart tarts
        -Uncle Shifty’s antojitos
        -the best curried chicken salad
        -caesar dressing
        -Jeff Crump’s pizza dough (& cooked on the bbq)
        -srirachi mayo w/ sweet potato fries (haven’t mastered the fries but that dip is our fave!)
        ….also…
        -glowing orbs
        -the stump table (I love this- turned out so lovely)
        -dollar store candy dish turned sugar bowl, biscotti, dish tab bowl
        -a variation on your spice organization (same containers but hung on dollar store magnet boards near the stove)
        -pop bottle dish soap dispenser
        -the moss bowl w/ white bird for easter
        -raised a monach butterfly (although finding eggs was a bust so we picked up from the caterpillar stage)
        -a glass birdfeeder but used the dollar store candy dish instead (& drilled a hole through the top to hang it from)
        ….and I have some enzyme cleaner brewing under my sink at the moment.
        Did this cause a disturbing shudder; kinda ‘Single, White Female’ style? Don’t worry I am not obsessed with becoming you just hoping for as much style & resourcefulness.
        Better wrap this up, I’ve got a bbq igniter to replace ; )

  31. Tammie says:

    I saw someone use pipe-insulation, the flexi foam type and roll it into a circle then useing tape to attach the ends for the base of a wreath and i think that would work really good for this one. And it is very cheap.

  32. shannon miller says:

    Where do I find the Boas? I’m going crazy, I want to make this wreath really bad bit I’m missing the major ingredient. I’ve been to dollar tree, dollar general, family dollar and Walmart but no luck. All the party supply stores want 10 and up for theirs. Someone please give me some ideas. Thank you

    • Amy says:

      I too am looking for black dollar store boas and cannot find them anywhere. Does anyone have any ideas as to what dollar stores to look in?

  33. Laurie says:

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this!! Definitely going to be making one this year!

    • Karen says:

      Laurie – The only problem with it is I like it so much in 3 years I haven’t come up with a new wreath. I’ll work on it for this year. 🙂 ~ karen

  34. Cheryl says:

    Sweet Wreath! I’ll be creating this soon!
    Gotta question though… what is the measurement of the unfinished wreath??
    Can’t wait to see how mine turns out :p

    • Karen says:

      Good question Cheryl! I have no idea. It’s probably around 15″ across. Just wing it … it’ll be fine. That’s what I always tell myself anyway. 🙂 ~ karen

  35. Pat says:

    Just wanted to say what a fantastic wreath and so easy. I’ve seen the feather wreaths and just assumed you had to glue a heck of a lot of feathers on it. I’m an idiot. Love your site.
    Pat

  36. Holly says:

    This is gorgeous! I love elegant creepy. I think I am going to do a winter version, with a white boa, maybe some white tulle, and sparkly snowflakes.

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