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January 11, 2011

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My {free} heart-shaped doily wreath

Madigan made... a heart-shaped doily wreath.

For the cost of a few hours, I made this wreath from materials I had at home... 
...a plastic plate, doilies, ribbon. (and a good movie!)

I thought about making a doily wreath about a month ago. I got the idea after I saw this winter doily wreath over at Martha Stewart and then found this gorgeous full one over at the red thread. (the latter has some a-mazing paper wreaths!)

The doily wreaths reminded me of the constantly blogged about coffee filter or cupcake liner wreaths. The doilies just look a little more frilly.
(BTW- For a wonder tutorial of a coffee filter wreath, go on over and drool at the Nester's. And Jen from TT&J made an awesome cupcake liner wreath last year.)

I had a pack of doilies and wanted to make a wreath, but I what could I use for a wreath base? Sitting next to the doilies in our "disposable entertaining stuff" (paper plates, napkins, etc) were these red plastic plates. I immediately knew the red was perfect for Valentine's Day.

I wondered if could create a heart shape on the plate with the doilies.
I had a feeling that it would either look cute... or it would totally flop.

"Mm, terrible ideas... Don't you just love those?"

So, I grabbed a good romantic movie and got to work.

I chose to spend the evening with Under the Tuscan Sun.

"Listen, when I was a little girl I used to spend hours looking for ladybugs.
Finally, I'd just give up and fall asleep in the grass.
When I woke up, they were crawling all over me."

Want to make one of these wreaths? Just follow these steps...

Supplies needed:
- Plastic disposable plate
- Doilies (I used almost 100)
- Heart template (I cut mine out of card stock)
- Marker or white-out
- Glue gun
- Ribbon

Optional, but recommended equipment:
- a good romantic chick flick

"What's your name?"... "Marcello.".... "Of course it is."

Step 1:
Cut out a heart shape from folded over card stock. (Remember, like in grade school?) Trace the heart onto the bottom of the plate. I used a white-out pen and just put a few dots around it for a general guide. I wanted to use white so the markings might not be as noticeable next to the white doilies.

Step 2:
Fold, pleat, and/or pinch each doily. (I mixed up my technique a little to add texture) Glue the center of each to the outer rim of the plate. Work your way around the edge of the plate. Go back and fill in as necessary. Be veeery careful, the glue is hot!

Step 3:
After the outer rim is covered, start to fill in the doilies from the edge towards the traced lines. Take your time here and think about the placement of the ones near the inside edges. It may take a little fluffing and moving of some of the doilies to get a heart shape.

Step 4:
My wreath did not quite look full enough, so I flipped the plate over and glued some folded over doilies around the bottom edge.

Step 5:
Using glue, attach the back of the wreath to a wide ribbon. (Sorry, no pic of this step)

By the time the movie was over, the wreath was almost finished. (after several glue gun burns and a little cursing)

"There's something strange about these trees... They're creepy. Creepy Italian trees."

Sorry, I can't help quoting that movie. There are too many great lines.

I put the wreath on our door for the pic, but I'm not sure where I'm going to permanently hang it. It feels a little early to break out the Valentine's decor. (Remember my grumblings about changing the holiday decor again?) But I'm thinking the red would look good in the kitchen. Stay tuned!

So, I leave you with my very favorite quote from Under the Tuscan Sun:

"What are four walls, anyway?
They are what they contain.
The house protects the dreamer.
Unthinkably good things can happen, even late in the game.
It's such a surprise."

I'm adding this project to the CSI Project
 (for Valentine's Day AND for the wreath fun in April 2011!)