Easy Drinking Straw Garland

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drinking-straw-star-bursts-682So, if we haven’t discussed this before, I’m kind of a hoarder. I’m not the storage-unit-for-my-QVC-habit kind of a hoarder, I’m just the only-buy-spaghetti-sauce-in-reusable-jars kind of hoarder. It’s not like I need another mason jar, it’s just that I need to use everything. Somebody told me that’s a very French way of thinking, which made me feel très fancy pants and unleashed my guilt about the subject altogether. So there! Sometimes it even comes in handy. Like, last week when I did those plastic straw starbursts. They are pretty cool, but I had to cut off all the bendy bits of the straws, which left me with about sixtyphilmillion 2″ pieces of plastic drinking straws. WHAT TO DO? OH GOD. HOW AM I GOING TO THROW OUT ALL THOSE PLASTIC TUBEY BITS? THE TUBEY BITS MUST BE SAVED!!!!
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Whew. That was close. Because, right about then, I was watching my pal Mark Montano on youtube (yes, I just totally name dropped Mark Montano Mark Montano Mark Montano Best Selling Author and Television Personality Mark Montano), and he was doing awesome things with zip ties and plastic beads. Let’s watch!


After watching that, I’m guessing you know exactly how I made this garland. But for the three of you reading this post in a cubicle without headphones, let’s break it down in pictures. Go back and watch the video later.
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Materials

  • Long zip ties (mine are 11″)
  • Plastic and paper straw bits cut into 1 -2″ pieces
  • Scissors that are good at cutting through plastic

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Instructions
Thread a few pieces of straw onto a zip tie like beads, tie off, then link on another. It’s just like making paper chains in elementary school. Just keep going. Eventually you’ll want to get your scissors out and snip of the extra tails, but that is it. Hang on your tree, or not. I hung mine up along a wall in big swoops with Christmas lights and some of my other favorite garlands.

Tips

  • If you don’t have zip ties, you could also do this with pipe cleaners, you just have to be a little more delicate when it comes to making the circles circular.
  • Be careful about using straws that are different widths. They won’t lay nicely like tube beads if one is large enough to slide inside another.
  • Those striped paper straws that are now so poplar look really good mixed with other colors!

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I love garlands at Christmas because they make great communal crafts. Eat your heart out, popcorn on a string!

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My favorite way to do garlands is to layer then up and add lights, preferably over an occupied wall…buuuut they also look pretty good solo. If you must.
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Good news: this will keep the kids busy for a while, thus leaving you to tend to more important matters.

You’re welcome. 

Comments

  1. Deb in Oklahoma says

    These are so festive that they could work for more than just Christmas—and what’s better than multi-tasking party decor? This garland would work for birthdays and other events, too.

    Question: do you have categories for your scissors, like Monica on Friends did with the bath towels? (She had 11 categories.) You’ve indicated “Scissors that are good for cutting through plastic”, which made me wonder if you also have scissors specifically for different needs. i mean, it’s a legitimate question for an artsy type like yourself. Plus, it would allow you another item to hoard in your crafting supplies. I was just wondering if that’s a universal thing, or just me, because I have media-specific labels on my scissors.

    • aunt peaches says

      HA! Deb, you know me too well. I have way too many scissors, and I ruin half of them by using them to cut fine wire, duck tape, etc. I think I ought to take a hint from you and label them! Love a good label 🙂

  2. Theo Winterwood says

    Hey, awesome, I’m one of the headphoneless cubicle people; I feel kinda important now.

    I love the way the multiple garlands look together with the lights, but I think I especially like knowing that I’m not the only person who has walls with that much art hanging on them. (And if I put up garlands, I know I’ll like them too much to take them down after the holidays . . .)

    • aunt peaches says

      Not going to lie – mine might stay up long after Valentines. No apologies!

    • aunt peaches says

      I know you are but what am I?

  3. Alyssa says

    I wonder if one could thread those cool straws onto a set of the battery operated micro led lights on a wire. I have the lights, now have to get the straws! (And get pompoms too while I’m at it)

    Thank YOU so much for the inspiration and all of the happy color!

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