Looking for an easy craft to do with kids? A painted magazine paper leaf wreath is easy and some steps are even perfect for a preschooler!
A few weeks ago I was not ready for fall; my mind was firmly planted in enjoying the remaining days of summer. Then I went to return something at Anthropologie and their window display inspired and motivated me to think about fall decor.
Approaching the store I thought how cute the heart was framing the mannequins, but from the inside of the store it looked even prettier. The way the light shown through the leaves was so cool I had to get up close to see what they were made of. I was surprised to see that they had just used magazine pages and painted them!
I figured I could use this same technique for a wreath. Sure the stain glass type effect wouldn’t be there, but why not try it. Bonus- I also thought that my son would be able to help with some of the steps.
For even more autumn inspiration, you will definitely enjoy all of the great ideas shared in the Harvest Hop organized by Juliet of A Loverly Life. Click on all of the links found at the bottom of the post to start your fall decorating prep.
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- Gather Materials
Most of the materials I needed, I already had. The only new things I bought were paint. I tend to keep catalogs and magazines for a while to reference or to craft!
2. Wrap wreath in paper.
As I was planning this craft, I was considering ways to attach the paper leaves to a wreath. The only wreath base I have is metal and better suited for weaving in foilage. Since paper does best with glue or tape, I thought of the best surfaces to tape or glue with. I keep a roll of butcher block paper for my kiddo and decided to use that. I didn’t bother to remove the rope I had on my wreath form; I simply wrapped the paper over it. When I got to the end I used some packing tape because that is all I had. I have plain tape somewhere, but it always disappears!
3. Paint magazine/catalog pages & wreath
I used a damp paintbrush to apply the paint to the pages. This made the paint go on nicely and prevented it from being too opaque. This step would be perfect for kids to do. My preschooler loves to paint and get messy while doing it! As I was the magazine pages, I thought I had better paint the paper on the wreath so that it would blend in better with the leaves. In both instances, wreath and pages, there is no need to be precise.
4. Let paint dry
While waiting for the paint to dry, start working on the next step. I liked how these pages looked together. The colors really feel like fall to me.
5. Create a leaf for tracing
For this step I used some foam that a friend gave me and free handed a leaf shape. If you have a leaf stencil or maybe even real leaves, you can try those.
6. Cut out leaf
7. Use leaf shape to trace onto painted pages
This part can be quite tedious, or meditative depending on how you look at it. If you are doing this project with older kids, this is definitely a step they can do. My four year old is still too young for tracing like this, so this part was all me. The amount of leaves you need will depend on the size of wreath you are making and the size of the leaves. My wreath form is on the smaller side, so I only needed 26 to get good coverage.
8. Cut out leaves
Here is a step kindergartners and older can do. My little guy loves using scissors, but he isn’t up to cutting shapes just yet. If I am using scissors I give him a pair to practice with. He will sit and cut a paper or string to itty bitty pieces ha ha.
9. Glue leaves to wreath
The only glue options in my house are a glue stick or glue gun. Whenever I use a glue stick it doesn’t seem to last. To avoid leaves falling of the wreath, I opted to use the glue gun. Plus, my son loves a glue gun! He gets so excited when we use it. Oh the simple things! That’s his little hand on the right, pressing down the leaf.
I asked my son if he would hold the wreath while I took a picture, but he said no thanks. At least he was polite about it ha ha. Can’t blame him either; he had a pretty good Lego building streak going on. Legos trump posing for mom.
Pin to save for later!
Once I made this wreath I started to think about other ways to use these leaves. A garland, design on a window. I like how the text and photos, in addition to the brushstrokes on the pages give some texture to the leaves.
Note- I have this hanging on the front door in a covered area. Since the leaves are paper, make sure to hang in a protected area.
Have you tried this technique? If so, what did you make? For more great fall decorating ideas, my friends’ posts will get you excited for cooler temps, pumpkins and turning leaves!
Hope you enjoy all of the great autumn inspiration below!
Thank you for joining the Harvest Hop 2021
If you aren’t into crafting or don’t have time, the wreaths below are for you. Thanks for reading! Drop me a note in comments- I love to hear from you!