Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg…. Sorry. Not really. I just couldn’t help myself. When I think jingle bells, naturally I think of that song. Which got me thinking about the origins of that song and whether or not it’s a “Maine thing”. I just don’t know sometimes! So I Googled it and there’s totally a Wiki about the song! Oh Wikipedia! You know all! But alas, this blog post isn’t about Jingle Bell song parodies, it’s about how I made a super easy jingle bell garland to deck our staircase this Christmas.
And when I say “super easy” I really do mean super easy, even though I started this decor project over a month ago and I JUST finished it. But in reality, it took me about an hour (active time) to do the whole thing. I typically swag our staircase with a DIY garland of plastic ornaments (as you can see back here in our 2012 Holiday Home Tour), but this year I felt the need to switch it up a little bit. Enter the jingle bell garland.
It all started back before Thanksgiving when I came across these jingle bells during a routine cruise through of Home Goods.
It was love at first sight. I saw the jingle bells down the aisle, batted my eyes at ’em a few times (I cannot confirm nor deny that I started blushing), and couldn’t resist taking them home. Oooh la la! And on a first date?! I had been drooling over the Pottery Barn jingle bells as vase filler for a long time but couldn’t justify spending $15 for 23 small bells. These guys were bigger…MUCH bigger…and only $10.99 for each box. I’ll take four!
To make the garland, my supplies were pretty limited. I just dumped all the bells in a large bowl (so I could mix up the different colors) then grabbed some jute (which I always have on hand) and a pair of scissors.
I just pulled a very long piece of the jute off the roll, about three feet long, refraining from cutting it just yet in case I needed more length. Then grabbed random jingle bells from the bowl and started stringing them on the jute one at a time. Side note: the jute tended to fray quickly from pushing it through so many jingle bells. It helps to either trim the jute occasionally to keep the end easily thread-able and also twist the jute (in the direction that would tighten the jute strands) as you push the twine through the bell. Both totally help make jingle bell stringing easier.
Before attaching the jingle bell strands to the garland, I swagged the staircase first with the empty greenery. It’s 1,000 times easier to attach the greenery decor (ornaments, jingle bells, etc.) afterwards since you can thread the empty greens through the balusters.
Then I just attached a section of jingle bells right over the greenery, working it one section at a time, tying the excess jute around the staircase bannister.
See…easy tying action. I was slightly worried that the twine wouldn’t hold up or the jingle bells would be too heavy for it and snap. But thankfully, it’s held up just fine.
One section down and four more to go. I just repeated the process, making three additional sections of jingle bell garland, tying them to their appropriate section of the staircase. This allowed me to add/subtract bells as needed to make it just the right length.
I’m loving the jingle bell garland. Like LOVING loving the jingle bell garland. My only regret is not attempting to tie on some fun ribbon in those spots where the jingle bells tie onto the bannister. But I thought they would compete with the stockings so I failed to give it a whirl. And can we take a minute to talk about our stockings for a second?
From closest to farthest away…that’s Colby’s stocking, mine and then Goose’s. These are actually our stockings growing up. Thus, Colby has had that stocking for 30+ years and it was handmade by his grandmother. Mine’s store bought but it’s still sentimental and has been with me since I can remember. Goose’s stocking is hand-me-down…it was the family cat’s stocking. I’m not sure how Goose feels about that. Maybe that explains his bout of rebellion this past week.
One Christmas project officially under our belts and about 17 more on the list to tackle in the next…oh…three days. Hmmm…I sense I’ll still be doing Christmas projects in January, maybe February….okay okay…July 4th at the latest!
Pssst…Holy snow storm craziness batman! We’re definitely going to be enjoying a white Christmas this year! How about you guys? Any last minute Christmas decorating? Did you survive the ginormous snow storm/ice storm that hit us (fellow Mainers)?