11.14.2011

bleeping wreathes!

I made a few wreathes. And, for some reason, I want to talk gangsta and swears about these pricks. I texted my holiday craft-lovin' friend a photo of one finished project accompanied by some colorful, excited language that I keep typing and then deleting so as to not offend your delicate eyeballs. I think it is funny. Especially in the context of a holiday craft that symbolizes friendship and the circle of life. Like the decorative gourd essay.

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Word, bitches.

OK, enough I promise. But know this: as I am writing this whole post, I am wanting to write swears instead of "wreath." Not because I am angry with the wreath. On the contrary, I am excited by the wreath and want to express it with expletives. Like, put your hands up for the wreathes! Feel free to insert your swear of choice wherever you see "wreath."

The wreathes.

The first was super simple. I scored a straw wreath at a thrift store for 75 cents and got my hot glue gun on. Margot and I collected dry leaves and attached them with said hot glue.

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I used a scrap piece of one inch black binding that I wrapped around the wreath (should have done this first!) and up over our front door, tacked in place on the other side.

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It was super easy and fast, the kids had fun and the whole thing is made from natural materials (we collected the free range glue sticks from our back yard).

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Ruby played with scissors and Margot sang Dynamite. 

Also, if it gets mucked up in our, ahem, storage "system", it can be reconstructed or changed entirely without waste.

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The second wreath was inspired by this lady's felted wool sweater number. I saw it last year and have been more than a little gobsmacked by it. I think it is so beautiful and simple, love that it is made from upcycled stuff. I have been on the hunt for second-hand wool sweaters but they are spendy these days. Instead, I opted to buy eco-felt (made from recycled plastic bottles) and a wee bit of wool felt because it is so so beautiful.

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materials:
thick wire, 2 - 2 1/2 feet
a circle to trace (like a wide mouth canning lid or yogurt lid)
scissors
3 - 3 1/2 yards of felt (the eco-felt is 45" wide, wool felt is 36" wide)
   I used (I had some left over):
   9 inches light blue and dark blue eco-felt
   17 inches red, dark pink, white, yellow eco-felt
   17 inches light green wool felt
   22 inches dark green wool felt

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I used a thick piece of scrap copper wire (benefits of wedding an electrician!), like twice as thick as a wire hangar. I traced eleven million circles and then they only filled half my wreath so I returned to the fabric store and traced eleven million more, using a 4" ceramic dish.

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I folded my felt in half and cut two at a time.

At first I was pushing a thick needle through the center of each felt circle and then muscling the wire through. I was a mama dedicated to my craft, my fingers red and sore, my hand aching and in a permanent gnarled fist from clutching the wire circle. Andy saw me struggling and casually observed, "Why don't you just fold those circles in half and snip a small cut in the center?" As my bloody digits trembled, I replied, "Where's the fun in that?"

After my man's brilliant suggestion, it went pretty dang quick. My kids participated by choosing, stacking and tossing the felt circles. I wrapped the wire onto itself at the end and cut a few felt circle slits a bit bigger to slide over the increased bulk. I hung it with a 4" nail.

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It is so tactile, everyone who comes over wants to caress that beefy, lofty orb. And they can! It is so magnificently sturdy. We might even play Thanksgiving flag football with this wreath. I really love it and think I'll leave the cocksucker up all year.

In other holiday cheer of the g-rated variety, my family gave ourselves an ongoing assignment to give something every day. Read about what inspired us and how much we love it so far in this week's mama digs: giving.

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ALSO! There have been so many issues with comment leaving on the bucket list/camera giveaway post. I am so sorry, I have no idea why your entries aren't showing up and have contacted blogger. I am extending the giveaway for one more day! Leave a comment (and copy, save it) and double check it posted. If it isn't there, try again...people seem to have luck the second go round.

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all photos taken with a Canon Digital SLR from Vanns.com

53 comments:

Kelly said...

Thanks for the laugh. :)

The Lincolns said...

Oh my word! I love the whole "leaving the cocksucker up all year!" I had to tell my husband why I was laughing ridiculously loudly from the couch. Both bleeping wreaths are beautiful! Well worth it!

Katie said...

Nici you needed one of these, I just found one and I am in love http://www.amazon.com/1057028-CMP-3-Rotary-Circle-Cutter/dp/B001CEAMCY

Minnesotagal said...

Hilarious! I can appreciate the swears that crafting can induce - and why is that we then persist? Because the result is so **** fantastic that it's worth all the blisters, burns and callouses. You can always tell how hard a project was by how many random people I grab to admire it. Hell, if I made that wreath I'd have it up all year and make sure that every letter carrier, UPS guy, Jehovah's witness and newspaper boy heard the story of it's making!
It's gorgeous Nici! And so much bigger than I thought - seeing it next to Margot. I was thinking it was a little 5 in' thingy when you posted the FB pic. Too bad we won't be seeing any of these in your shop any time soon - at least I'm just wagering a guess there...



**** I'm sure there are witty responsive swears I could insert here but my sailor swears are on hiatus right now as our not quite two year old has turned into a parrot as of late - and while "Oh No God!" (oh my god) may be endearingly cute - the f-inheimer is not)

Katie (Mama May I) said...

Just the laugh I needed tonight! The wreathes are great. You guys are too. xo

Melina said...

Well, they both look so beautiful and fun! Why were they such pains? Usually when something goes wrong for me....well, the final project looks like hell. For example, the gingerbread house of my dreams never looks like the gingerbread house of my design. Not even after YEARS of experimentation. (And by the way, as I try and construct the perfect gingerbread mansion, my sister glues graham crackers to a shoe box, writes WalMart in gummy relief, then puts gummy bears outside of it protesting with tiny toothpick signs. Christmas at the Coogans!)
Anyway, I'd caress that big beefy colorful wreath!
Oh dear.
xo
Melina

Kate said...

I love to say cocksucker.
Not around little ears, of course :)
-Kate

Katie said...

There is nothing better than a surprise "cocksucker" comment in a post. That felt wreath is gorgeous.

Mama Mel said...

My "wreath" was a set of homemade felt food items and little girl tutus and purses that were under deadline for three birthday parties we recently attended. They came out really nice looking and I learned along the way how to become more efficient with my sewing and cutting and gluing. I really think gluing should have an "e" in the middle.
Word.

Craftysquirrel said...

Ha - the craft is great and the post very funny

tomchowder said...

I'm up at 3 a.m. icing my bruised knees and picking at batting that seems to be permanently fused to my running tights after a miserable/awesome session of basting and quilting the biggest motherf#*)&ing quilt I've ever made. And I couldn't be more giddy, or more foul-mouthed. Love your blog, and this post in particular!

Happiness is... said...

I simply love your creativity! I always wanted to make garland with small circle felted sweater pieces for the holiday. But your wreath rocks. I can only imagine that you DID cut 1 Million circles.

Thanks for the inspiration from wreathes to rogue snowmen. All thankful moments for sure.

-Jennifer

Abby Taylor said...

I like mamas who swear.

Kelle said...

A Tuesday morning laugh, thank you. Me loves me some Christmas spirit...and a potty-mouth friend.

xoxo they both turned out beautiful.

Enchanted Momma said...

I always have big ideas about a craft to give everyone at Christmas. Then the first one is always a bitch to make, it doesn't turn out as cute as I wanted and I say eff the whole thing.
Fa la la la la

GraceesMommy said...

Bwahahahahah...well slap my ass and call me Judy..I think I peed myself upon reading this.
Seriously, though I would buy one of those if you made it..blood and all. Bwahahahaha.

Fresh Eggs Farm said...

Hell yes! These are f-ing awesome! LOL I love swears :-) ...and the wreathes are amazing too!!!! I love them both.

Sarah said...

too funny. I teach 8th grade and enjoy using the phrase...word up! althought I picked it up from middle schoolers 10 years ago so my efforts to be cool are just really outdate. cheers

Marti said...

Funny! My friend sent me the decorative gourd essay a few weeks ago and I nearly peed my pants laughing so hard!

Here's to mother luvin' wreaths!

TRB Holt said...

Still laughing! I wonder if you tag the felt wreath as, "Beautiful Holiday Cocksucker Wreath" how many will sell. Probably a shitload! Like Mother like Daughter! ;)

xo

Jenn said...

I'm not sure what I'm laughing at more right now, your post or your mom's comment. Well done on the wreath's!

Tonya said...

Andy saw me struggling and casually observed, "Why don't you just fold those circles in half and snip a small cut in the center?" As my bloody digits trembled, I replied, "Where's the fun in that?"


This cracked me up! So a conversation me and my dh have had. I always do things the hard way.

and your mom typing cocksucker and shitload made my day lolol

colette said...

love the wreath!! and your writing is hilarious.

tell me more about these "free range glue sticks"...??????

rebecca... said...

,,,so creative, so cute!,,,

The Dimas Family said...

I LOVE your fall wreath- you've inspired me. We have some beautiful red leaves right now that are about to fall and I'm going to collect them and try to make a wreath like yours :)

And thank you for the many giggles, from another impassioned creative person- I totally get your use of expletives just because you're so excited!

ctb said...

That cocksucker is totally gonna work year round. I think it would look bitchin' outside in the garden once the sun returns.

Well, waiting a day to find out that I am the winner of the awesome camera prize... I can accept. A post without Alice, not so much. (smile + wink)

(actually I think that may be her sleeping on the coach behind miss margot)

Misty said...

Love, luv, lurve, the mo fo'ing wreaths. And the perfectly placed cocksucker. Nothing like spitting coffee while laughing at my desk in the morning.

I too, have "free range glue sticks" but only because my freaking cat packs them off whenever I get them out. I find them roaming under the couch quite frequently.

As always, loved reading your blog this morning.

6512 and growing said...

I want to fondle your mofo wreath, baby.

Jenny V said...

Bigs ups to the felt mofo...love it!

Jo @ Jo in the Kitchen said...

Those are gorgeous! I also did a swear-inducing craft last month that took waaay more time and materials than I was expecting, but it's gorgeous and I love it. I made a faux-capis chandelier out of waxed paper and a fruit bowl.
I definitely want to touch that felt wreath, too ;)

jenny of all trades said...

you are one gangsta mothah crafty beeatch! love your posts, as always.

MN Madrecita said...

Cocksucker made me LOL! I'm still giggling over it. The wreaths are great!

trbholt said...

via mamalode.com:

I love this thought…. and Susan is awesome!
xoxo

Stacey said...

via mamalode.com:

Love Susan! I might have to take this idea and use it in my life as well. Giving is so much more than a donation of food or a check at the holidays and I would love to share it with anyone who reads my stuff.

Have a good day!

Tina said...

via mamalode.com:

I love this idea! Giving is truly wonderful and fulfilling. Susan is a killer snowman!

6512 and growing said...

via mamalode.com:

Aw Nici, your family is so sweet.
I’m glad that link spoke to you, I’m still thinking on it too (especially as my man is about to turn 40).
Also, we have a church on our street too, how about that?
xo
Rachel

Susan said...

via mamalode.com:

Outstanding! Loves me a snowwoman named Susan who looks just like me! Those high waists are so flattering, no?

Zoe said...

via mamalode.com:

Awesome! No snowmen for us this year… but on Saturday, we went for a lovely hike in Armstrong Woods Redwood grove, and someone had taken a few plant bits and turned a damp old burl stump into a gorilla. Made my freakin’ day! Well, that and Connor doing some odd damp tap dance in muddypuddles. And echoing.

But I love this idea! Giving is soooo good!!!

rebecca said...

via mamalode.com:

,,,i’m going to join in on the holiday spirit of “giving”, a brilliant idea!,,,”susan” looks very cheery and i bet the participants at the 10am service went inside the building with a large grin on their face!,,,i can’t wait for the snowfall that will provide enough snow to roll into large round body parts, so much fun! (smile),,,

Mary ♥ said...

I laughed out loud when I read 'cocksucker', me and brother love swears and for some odd reason we said that word frequently, hehe. I love those wreathes!

Susan the snowman is adorable. xx

Elisabeth said...

I love how you said cocksucker! Made me smile and laugh! LOVE the wreath! May add it to my ever growing to do list! <3

Amber said...

Cocksucker is pretty much my favorite word and oh so underused. Thanks for representing.

And I LOVE the leaf wreath (er...motherfucker). My stepmom sent me a box of fall leaves from Wisconsin (don't get much color here in Houston) and I think they were most definitely destined for this project. To Michaels we go!

courtney - larking. said...

That McSweeney's essay is one of the funniest things I've ever read. Thanks for the reminder about it. Word, bitches! Love those f-ing wreaths!

Jasmine said...

Love that wooly bitch.

Maria said...

Love the effin' wreaths!! They're beautiful. Gonna try to be more crafty this year.
Also, really need me a new camera!
LOL

BRH said...

Madly in love with that wreath! And you're right--I seriously want to dive in and carress it! Too bad I don't have the patience to make it... maybe you should sell one (or a bunch) on Etsy? ;)

Heatheroo said...

Hilarious...that last comment about the wreath, had tears rolling down my cheeks=) Ii is beautiful but my hands hurt even thinking of making it! Have a great day! Heather

Jill said...

Just as I enjoyed the gourd essay, I love your effin' bleeping wreathes. Funny! You are right about wanting to touch that felt wreath...I have put my hand to the screen wanting to touch it about 10 times now!

Jill B (Overland Park, KS)

Daniele said...

those wreathes are the shiaaaaatttt!

FinnyKnits said...

Aw, I've been away from Dig too long. Pesky work.

Anyway - I'm glad I caught back up with you and saw these beautiful wreaths! If we had enough pretty leaves, I'd make one of those, but I might have to settle for the felt/wool wreath because WHOA do I have some sweaters that need slicing into. I've been hoarding them for years without a purpose. And now I have one.

Thanks, mama.

dig this chick said...

I am simply loving the cocksucker love! You guys are funny.

Finny, I totally thought of you when I typed "cocksucker"...you inspire with your awesomely timed swears.

Peggy said...

I am going to be busting out, laughing hysterically, for the next two weeks when I think of that cocksucker. And I'm not even going to explain it to my husband. He wouldn't get it. Cocksucker. HA!

Just Trying Not to Blink .... said...

That " .... ing" felt wreath is the coolest thing! Love it!

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