Friday, January 10, 2014

Is there such a thing as having too many balls? A cozy, sweet, yarn ball wreath tutorial


All the glitz and sparkle of Christmas has been put away for another a year,  and winter has fully set in. Ahh.. January. My least favorite month of the year. My front porch has been looking a little bleak, what with this crazy cold weather we've been having. A front door pick-me up was desperately needed to get me through January, as my go-to Fall Wreath is a little out of season. Although I'd really rather be hanging a bit of spring on the door or celebrating summers arrival, that obviously wasn't going to work either. I needed something new.

I've come across various versions of this wreath online over the past month or so and just fell madly in love with the texture and feeling of the wreath.  HGTV has a version, using sweater covered balls, and I found a really fun tutorial on Virginia Fyne's blog. It just reminds me of a warm, cozy sweater on a wintry day - Just what I need to bring a smile to my face every time I come in!

What I really wanted to make was a felted-ball wreath, such as this one here at CleverCharlotte - I was actually a bit obsessed for a month or so. You may notice there are a dozen or so felted balls in my wreath above.. that's as many as I could make, as I am a felted ball failure and am now over my obsession.

Source





Clearly, I needed a new plan. Out with the felted wool balls, and in with the yarn balls!



It's not exactly difficult to make - throw what seems like a million a few dozen balls together, add a glue gun and wreath form and you're there. But, it is on the time consuming side. Like, really on the time consuming side.. as in it took me four days to make a zillion balls. Mind you, I figured out I was putting them together in the most difficult way possible about half way through, and rectified that, which significantly sped up the process.. but we'll talk about that in a minute. It's mindless and once you get on a roll, it goes fairly quickly.



I started with a 14" straw wreath form, and covered it with coordinating scrap fabric, attaching a burlap ribbon at the top for hanging.



Then, I started working on the balls.

I used four different sizes of Styrofoam balls, between 2.5" and 1", and four different skeins of wool in coordinating colors. I like the natural color blend - it reminds me of outside at this time of year, but in a much more aesthetically pleasing way. Anything that can help me to see beauty in all that grey sky and bare trees is exactly what I need!

To cover the balls, I found the easiest way was to wrap each ball one half at a time.


I began by dabbing glue on the top of the ball and winding the yarn in a spiral beginning at the top until I reached the middle of the ball. I then cut the yarn and glued the end. I then turned over the ball and did the same thing on the other end, meeting up with the cut end in the middle. This took all of 1.5 minutes per ball, and less on the smaller sizes, which was 200% less time than it took me to make one ball before I figured out this was the faster method. This is also why there is actually a wreath to look at instead of a whole lot of yarn balls in the trash can.



See? Relatively simple. Now, you just have to do it a 150 times more and you're done!


I used approximately three packages of each size, with a minimum of six balls in each package, so 150 is probably an exaggeration. A fairly significant volume of balls of all sizes.

What I found easiest was to create the first two packages of each size and then to make whatever I needed to fill in the wreath as I went along.



Once I had a tidy pile of balls, I began attaching them to the form, starting with the largest balls and spacing them out . I then repeated this for each size of ball until I had used all I had created. Then I started creating what I need to fill in.


Once complete, I added a burlap bow.



In closing, I had no idea how difficult it would be to write an entire post about balls and not say anything derogatory, since I'm really ten years old inside. In truth, it turns out it's impossible - if you're easily offended, I recommend you stop reading now.. The ten-year old in me is fighting to get out and I can't hold her back any longer. With that said, after creating this wreath, I have big and small balls. If you make this wreath as well, we'll all have big and small balls. Balls to the walls. There. I feel so much better, but do apologize for losing self control.

Have a great Friday!

15 comments:

  1. Haha! I love this, I've been looking for a wintery wreath, this is so unique and cute. Great idea!

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  2. Kim, your big and small ball wreath looks adorable! I like it much better than the all felted one. Also, having a ten year old inside eager to come out was not bad at all. Ten year olds are still innocent and funny. Thankful that a dirty old man wasn't lurking around, lol!

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    1. Thanks so much, Gail! Coming from you.. the maker of that incredibly gorgeous burlap wreath with the bendable flowers that I've been in love with for forever.. that is a huge compliment! :) Yes, luckily there wasn't a dirty old man around, although, I'm starting to think maybe I have one trapped inside of me along with the 10-year old!

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  3. Oh, heavens! This is so cute! I might just have to make one of these... ;) Thanks so much for the inspiration, and for stopping by Stringtown Home! Hope your weekend is going well!

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    1. Thanks so much, Heather! Well.. if you do.. you know what that means! haha. And thanks for stopping by.. I hope to see you again!

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  4. I crochet & knit and always have leftover yarn - this would be great to use it up making this cute wreath. Thanks for the tutorial. I also have some of those foam balls from a project I did with my kids a long time ago. Can't wait to make one - maybe my boys would like to help since they like to use the glue gun.

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    1. What a great idea, Kimberlee! I wish I'd made the wreath when my girls were home.. they'd have loved it and I would have probably figured out what was taking me so long much earlier in the process! Thanks for stopping by and I'd love to see your finished wreath if you do make it!

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  5. I love it! I love the natural colors, it gives it a rustic feel.

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    1. Thanks so much, Bethany! For the compliment and for stopping by!

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  6. What a lovely wreath! I like the yarns you used. I'm pinning this!

    Navy Wifey Peters @ Submarine Sunday Link Party

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    1. Thanks, T'onna! I know nothing about yarn, but really liked the texture for this project. I picked it up at Walmart for really, really cheap. Thank you for dropping in, and I'm going to check out your link party. :)

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  7. Thanks for linking up to the Tuesday Confessional link party. You've been featured, so head over and grab a brag button! http://www.craftyconfessions.com/2014/01/tuesday-confessional-features-1202014.html
    I hope to see you at the next Tuesday Confessional link party. :)

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  8. I love the colors and yarn textures in your wreath! Perfect for winter!! Thank you so much for linking up at Share it Sunday!!

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  9. Hi Kim! I found your blog through the Social Media Saturday link up and thought I'd stop to say hello! Your wreath is so cute, by the way. I love anything yarn and need to make one for myself!! I look forward to following all your future creations, have a great weekend!! :)

    -Brittany

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Thanks for taking the time to share!