I absolutely love bringing evergreen into my home during the winter. So I guess it’s not surprising that even though I don’t celebrate Christmas, I put up a real tree every year. The smell is intoxicating…and not because we’re allergic or anything. Last week I cut some sprigs from our Leland Cypress trees to put on our front door wreath.

diy cypress wreath

To bring some life indoors, I really wanted to do some garland swag around the house this year. I’ve never done it before, as I really dislike the fake stuff and the real kind can set you back upwards of $20 for a small section! But our Cypress trees are pretty large now and require regular trimming to keep the branches off the street and driveway, so I grabbed a pair of shears and decided to make my own garland!

This is SUPER easy. Do not be intimidated, if you have an hour or so and some evergreen on your property (or neighbor’s who wouldn’t mind you trimming theirs!), then let’s get started.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Evergreen sprigs-I cut more as needed
  • Floral wire -$1 for a package at Dollar Tree
  • Scissors

diy garland supplies


If you want, you can cut a bunch of small sections of wire in advance. It might speed up the process a bit. Mine were about 2″ long.

diy evergreen garland

Start by taking two sprigs and attaching one to the other, staggering the ends about 1.5-2″. Think of it like wood flooring or brick laying, where you want to stagger the joints for strength. Give the wire a few twists, then either trim the ends or fold them out of the way.

how to make your own garland

I found that taking a third piece and attaching it to BOTH of the previous pieces yielded a pretty solid result. You can always add more in if it’s looking thin or weak in spots later. It’s hard to tell where the wire is, so I’ve added some arrows to point the joints out. Pun intended.

making live garland

Continue on like this until you have the length that you want, then fill in any areas that need more fluff. It took me about an hour including giving the trees outside a haircut. I hung it up in our dining room using some Command Hooks I had in my stash, making this project completely free for me (since I also already had the wire).

diy live garland swag tutorial

I love the crisp green color against my otherwise neutral palette! I haven’t decided if I want to add anything to it, like in the middle for example.

easy diy garland

In general, I decorate more for the winter season than just Christmas, so I’ll have to think of something that will last through New Year’s. But if you are making this for Christmas, you could customize it in so many ways! Try one of those red bows in the center, or attach extra ornaments along the length. Or double up on the garland and dangle an evergreen wreath from the center. Pine cones or other natural elements would be really pretty too- actually I might just do that. Idea development, happening live folks. I’m thinking about making another one for the stair railing and possibly for my hallway. Is there such a thing as too much swag? I’m new at this, obviously. Where do you usually hang yours?

One Response

  1. Julie

    It looks great! I really love it with the paper rosette wreath (which is what originally brought me to your site back in 2010).


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