I took down my three St. Patrick's Day decorations (Hubby and I aren't Irish, so it's no big to-do around here) and put up my Easter decorations this week. Most of my decorations were purchased during the short time that I worked at Wal-mart (between college and Grad School) about 10 years ago. I have upgraded my Easter baskets since then, but I have a bunch of tired plastic eggs and plastic grass that I was getting sick of unpacking each year, so when I saw this adorable idea, I knew it was time re-purpose some of the old decor into something new and fabulous. The only new thing I had to buy for this project was some cute Easter ribbon (that was half off at JoAnn's for $1.99 for the roll, and I still have enough left to make another smaller bow).
For this project you will need:
two 12 inch rounds of cardboard (I used an old box) and something to cut them with
42-46 plastic Easter eggs
a bag of plastic grass
hot glue gun and glue (be sure to have about 10 sticks on hand--I went through lots of glue)
1 1/2" to 2" wide wired ribbon for the bow
wire or pipe cleaners (to attach the bow and make a hanger on the back of the wreath)
pencil or chopstick (for poking the grass between the eggs)
Cut your circles out of cardboard and then cut a smaller circle out of the center to create a ring. I used a 12 inch pizza pan and a 9 inch cake pan to make my circles. If you don't have pans those sizes, you can use the push pin in the center of the cardboard with a 6 inch piece of string tied to a pencil...but that's a lot more work :). Once your rings are cut, laminate them together with your hot glue to create a sturdy base for your wreath.
Then you can begin gluing the eggs with their smaller top ends facing outward. I chose a recurring pattern of colors to follow so I wouldn't end up with the same colors next to each other. I glued the egg to the cardboard and to the egg next to it. Try to glue the base of the egg to the cardboard so that you still have room to glue your inner circle of eggs. Mine were cutting it a bit close.
Once you have good string of eggs on the outside, you can start working on the inner ring. Glue the egg to the cardboard and the surrounding eggs. I used the same recurring color pattern, but since you use so many fewer eggs, the colors ended up getting very close together, a random pattern may work better for the inner ring of eggs. Leave a gap at the top of your wreath where you plan to place your ribbon so you can save a little on eggs.
Once you've finished with the outer and inner rings, you can place the last group of eggs vertically on top and between the two rows. I alternated the direction of the eggs and tried to angle them to fill in the gaps and make it look a little more random.
Next, I made a hanger out of a pipe cleaner that I tied knots in the end of to stick to the hot glue. I also added a little hot glue along the edge of the inner circle of eggs since it was hanging over the cardboard a bit more than the outer ring, and I wanted to make sure they'd stay put.
Now to hide all of the gaps and the cardboard rings with plastic Easter grass. I used some old purple grass that had been in the bottom of a plastic Easter basket for years. It worked great--glad I didn't throw it out. :) Shoot a little glue into each of the cracks between eggs and shove a little clump of grass into it with a pencil or chopstick. The wreath will look like a hairy mess while in process. I went around the outside, then the inside, and then filled in the bottom gaps to cover the cardboard.
When you're finished filling all of the gaps with grass, pull off any excess and begin trimming all of the long pieces away. Trim away until you think it looks good. It will create quite the mess.
After it's all trimmed up, you can attach your bow. I used a pipe cleaner to attach the bow, so it would be very easy to switch the bow out if you get sick of it, or if it begins to look a bit crushed. I'm so pleased with how my new Easter wreath turned out. I'm also really glad I got to make it from mostly old decorations that I had lying around.