Mesh Wreath Mania!

For this week's DI-Friday, I'm getting a crash course in mesh wreaths... and what would you say if I told you we were also going vampire hunting?
vampire slayer mesh wreath materials, craft supplies, Halloween crafting DIY, faux garlic bulbs, glitter bats
A few years ago, one of my brothers was away at school and let our mom know that there was a Halloween decorating contest going on in his dorm. Ever the craft enthusiast (I actually credit my mom and our arts & crafts days when I was a kid as the start of my crafting appreciation!), our mom taught herself how to make the mesh wreaths she'd seen online and whipped one up for him in an afternoon. (It's the top left skeleton one below.)

To say the response to that first wreath was overwhelmingly positive is an understatement. In no time at all, she cranked out a few more Halloween wreaths (pictured below) before moving on to other holidays, seasons, and even sports teams for inspiration. True story, she even made one on location for the staff at the hotel that she and my dad would stay at when they'd visit my brother at school! She had showed them one of her latest wreaths and they said how much they'd love to have one like that for their lobby... and off to the craft section of the local big box store she went!
collage of decorative Halloween mesh ribbon wreaths with skeletons ghosts pumpkins and spiders created by Kathleen Noles
Since then, we've gone mesh-wreath-crazy and I knew I wanted her to help me make a new one to feature on the blog! I had had an idea for a vampire slayer wreath (yes, absolutely inspired by Buffy) for quite awhile and as I was pulling supplies together, I knew I was on to something great!

Full disclosure, I set out to hand make this wreath totally by myself, but would be lying if I didn't say that I had more of an assistant role in its assembly. My mom graciously took the reigns in its construction so I could document and take notes - but I can confidently say I did my share of tying and untying the ties on the frame to make sure everything stayed securely!

So before we get started, I just want to say a big thank you to my mom for helping me with this project and also patiently explaining the step-by-step process. Thanks, Mom!! 💜

Alright, let's get crafting! For this wreath, you'll need:
  • A 16" diameter wreath frame with pipe cleaner-esque twisty ties (Aside: do they even have an official name?!)
  • 1-2 rolls of 10" deco mesh in your choice background color
  • 1-2 rolls of 5.5" deco mesh in your choice middleground color
  • 2-3 rolls of an accent ribbon or two (you can use a few different patterns if you choose!)
  • Miscellaneous lightweight trinkets and accents of varying size to be affixed to the wreath for your chosen theme
  • Scissors
Before you begin assembling everything with your mesh wreath, you'll want to open up all of the pipe cleaner twisty-ties (which will be known as "ties" from here on out. There, I gave them an official name!). This will help you get the first round of deco mesh properly placed.

Take the 10" deco mesh (the back color) and start tying it onto the wreath frame using an elbow-to-hand length of mesh in between each tie. These can be 12" to 15" or however long depending on how big you want the loops of deco mesh in the back layer. Gather it with your hand and secure it with the ties, crossing the ties then twisting once to secure them. Go around the whole outside ring of the wreath frame's ties with the back mesh color and then go around the entire inner circle of the wreath frame's ties, tying the mesh down and creating loops through each one.

After you've gone around around both the outer and inner circles of the wreath frame, cut the mesh with an inch or two to spare. Note that if you have some loops that are closer together, those make a better top of the wreath since they'll be denser. Where you cross over from the outer loop of the frame to the inner and back is usually thicker, so keep that in mind for the final wreath decoration placement, as well.

Next, you'll add the secondary color of 5.5" mesh ribbon. Untwist and retwist the ties when you're adding the secondary color. Doing this keeps them from sticking too far out as you add more layers to the wreath and also keeps them secure. Work around both the outer and inner circle of the wreath frame. When you're finished, tuck the ends of the mesh through the wreath frame and let them stick out the back.

After you've got both the 10" and 5.5" deco mesh on the frame, start adding the accent ribbon by again untwisting one of the ties and securing it. From there, alternate fastening the accent ribbon from the inside and the outside circles of the wreath frame, going to every other tie as you work your way around the frame.

You can also take a smaller width, secondary accent ribbon and loop it from every other fastener tie (opposite of the first accent ribbon) or even put it on top of the accent ribbon if it's slim enough. The possibilities are really endless here and it's totally up to you! (Check out the spider wreath above if you'd like to see an example of this!)

Once you've finished attaching all of the accent ribbon, make ribbon end strips by taking 6" to 8" of the accent ribbon, bending them in half and cutting the ends at an angle to make points. Tie these with the twist ties at any of the points on the wreath that the accent ribbon is not fastened to.

You can also make a large bow for the bottom of the wreath out of the accent ribbon. For this wreath, we opted not to, but you can see other examples of this in the pictures above.

For the last step, you'll be attaching all of the trinkets and decor pieces to the wreath! You'll want to use the ties to affix most of them, but don't untie them all the way to get them secured.

Don't be afraid to try different arrangements with the pieces to get everything placed just how you like it, adding additional mesh or accent ribbon as needed. You may also find that you need to hot glue some items onto the wreath, but be careful with hot gluing directly onto the mesh, since the glue will go through the mesh and could get all over the wreath.

Once you've got all of your wreath's decorations attached, carefully hang the wreath up to make sure that everything will stay in place once it is on display. If things shift or move, you can add additional ties to put them back in place. The same goes for the mesh - deco mesh like this typically has wires in it's edges, so if it gets smashed or moved around, just bend it back to it's best shape. And once you've got everything securely in place, you're finished!
vampire slayer wreath with wooden stake and cross red lace ribbon faux garlic bulbs ruby gem gothic cross charm on metal chain, Halloween mesh wreath decoration, vampire craft DIY, Halloween vampire Dracula decor
What I think is really great about these wreaths is just how much personality and story you can put in each one. And you can source supplies from pretty much anywhere, so they can be very budget friendly! For this vampire slayer wreath specifically, some of the accent pieces came from craft stores, others came from the dollar store - and the stake is from a stint at Boy Scout Camp years ago that I held on to just in case I ever needed to stake some vamps. (I'm the coolest.)

While the two sizes of deco mesh are pretty standard, you can also experiment with different colors and types of accent ribbon when creating wreaths of your own. There's truly no limit to what you can do with these wreaths, so let your creativity run free! Happy Crafting!


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