I learnt how to make a Christmas rag wreath and not only was it fun and easy, but this craft is also sustainable. If you’d like to create your own, then follow my 11 top tips.
1) Save your old fabric
I’d advise that you spend 3-6 months saving old fabric before you attempt to make your own rag wreath. This could be clothing, or anything else you have lying around. You can give new life to something that was heading for the recycling bin, by reusing it.
I personally wouldn’t buy new fabric especially for this craft, as I don’t think that’s very sustainable and actually, most of us have plenty lying around the house that we could use. If you are drawing a blank, then ask your friend, or a family member if they have any old clothes that you could use.
You can also add fabric to your wreath that has a meaning to you. For example, I incorporated offcuts from my son’s personalised Christmas sack and stocking into my Christmas rag wreath design. I didn’t add much, but enough for me to notice it within the design.
2) Wait until you have a big pile of material
I was shocked by the amount of fabric it takes to create a rag wreath. I used a 10 x 10 inch wire frame and I went through a lot of fabric to create it.
This isn’t a project that I’d like to leave half finished, so to avoid being forced into that position, make sure you have a lot of fabric and offcuts that you can work with.
3) Consider colour and texture
There are no rules when it comes to creating a rag wreath. You can use cotton, polyester, netting, silk, anything. But have think about the combinations before you start, to ensure that you’ll be happy with the finished piece.
You can put different fabrics and colour combinations alongside one another to see how they’d look. This will help you work out what you prefer and which combinations will help you to achieve the look you’re going for.
4) Map it out before you start
You don’t have to create a plan, but if you want an element of symmetry, it makes sense to have a rough idea before you start. This will also mean that you don’t overuse a particular fabric in one section.
When I make a rag wreath, I like to approach it in quarters and I benefit from having a rough idea about which fabric I want to use and where. I take a pencil and some paper and I map out where my colours will go. It only takes me a couple of minutes, but I find that having a rough guide is useful.
The thing I love about this craft is that you can experiment. I created a rag wreath with netting and I was told it resembled a tutu. But I thought it was fabulous and I never would have created it if I wasn’t open to experimentation.
My mother in law once created a Christmas wreath wreath too. But instead of using reds, greens and whites, she used black, maroon and forest green. She also added some lights to the finished product.
6) Make a rag wreath for every season
Rag wreaths are a lovely way of bringing the seasons indoors. You could create a spring one in yellow, with a sprinkle of green and duck egg blue. Or you could create an autumnal rag wreath, with reds, browns and oranges.
You could also make one to match your decor.
7) A Christmas rag wreath is a must make
I loved creating my Christmas rag wreath. This is a really easy DIY craft and it’s perfect to make whilst watching a Christmas film, or listening to Christmas music. Its also really easy to do, so you can get the kids involved.
You can pop them on your door to add some festive cheer. I wouldn’t put it outside though (unless you have a porch), because the wind and the rain may damage your craft.
8) Cut strips of fabric
To make your rag wreath you will literally tie pieces of fabric around your wire frame. So cut out a selection of strips in one batch, before you get on with crafting!
It is up to you how big your strips are. Some people keep it very uniformed, but I prefer to make my strips rough and wild. You should do whatever you feel will work the best for your design, but I’d recommend that you make the strips around two inches wide and six inches long. You can always trim them later if you feel they are too big for your design. But cutting is much easier than adding!
9) Add the ribbon tie when you’re halfway through
At the halfway point, it’s time to add your ribbon. To do this, you need to work out which side is the front and where the top and the bottom is. This can be a tricky call. I would recommend stepping back and taking a picture of the different angles before making a decision.
I’d use a thick ribbon for this, so that it’s durable and lasts.
10) Reinforce the wire if you need to
If you are going to use long strips of heavy fabric then you may find that your frame becomes weighed down. If it splits, don’t worry, you can reinforce the joins with fabric. Keep your eye on this though, so you can firm up the structure sooner rather than later. I find it quite tricky to do if there’s already a lot of fabric on the frame.
11) If you don’t want to make one – buy one
If you don’t feel as though this craft is for you, but you like the idea of having a rag wreath your home, then why not buy one? That way you could enjoy a pretty rag wreath and support an independent creator. There are lots of beautiful ones for sale on Etsy.
If you enjoyed this article, then you should check out my Christmas and New Year section.