Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas Crafts with Kids: Ribbon Garland

Are you looking for a fun craft to do with your kiddo during Christmastime?   Make a ribbon garland for your Christmas tree!  It can take as long as you want it to, only limited to how long you want the garland to be or how much attention span your kiddo might have.  You could also work on it in spurts, so it doesn't get too tedious at one setting. Regardless, you will end up with a beautiful garland for your tree that you can use for years to come!

Ribbon - ~1-inch width and up
stapler and staples
Fabri-Tac glue 

First off, go to your favorite craft store and buy a bunch of different spools of Christmas ribbon.  I tend to go when there is a big sale, which happens a lot around now!  If you happen to have a bag of random ribbon scraps at your house, pull those out too.  I think they add to the fun of the garland, but do as you wish!  I say to buy a bunch of spools, as you want a variety of links in your chain, plus you want the garland to travel some ways down your tree.  Never fear though, you can always add more links on at another time if you decide your garland is not long enough for your liking.  The clever girl and I actually started this garland last year, and made more this year.  Since there still seems to be a bit of a naked, non-garland area at the bottom of our tree, we may need to add more!  If you do not have a Christmas tree, or prefer something different on your tree, you could also use this to decorate doorways or your mantle, just get creative!

While you are at the craft store, buy some Fabri-Tac glue, if you don't have some already.  You may have noticed, but for pretty much any project that needs glue, this is what I use.  It is awesome.  I actually tried using Tacky-Glue for this project but it did not work.  Fabri-Tac adheres together quickly, so you do not have to hold the parts together to get it to stick.  That is a big bonus!

To prep:  Cut your ribbon into 6 inch lengths and put them all together in a bag.   If your kiddo is good with scissors, you could have them do this part too.  I did it in preparation just to save on time.

First, have your kiddo reach in the bag and pick out a ribbon to use.  Make a mustache with the ribbon if you so desire! 

Make a loop with the ribbon, or if the chain has been started, loop that ribbon through an end of the chain.

There are two ways to make the chain: Make a loop from each ribbon with RIGHT SIDES TOGETHER and staple them about 1/2 inch from the end.  Then turn the ribbon right side out and glue the ribbon ends back on the loops (if you sew, picture in your mind pressing the seam OPEN.  The above photo shows some garland made with this method.  If you look closely at the red ribbon, you can see that the ends of the ribbon are both on the inside of the loop, with the stapled part like a seam.  This works well, but is a bit more time consuming and much messier, glue-wise.

 Here, the clever girl is stapling the ribbon using the first method.  See the inside-out loop on the top?

Then, the clever girl reminded me of the way they made paper chains in her class at school.  They simply overlapped the ends!  So I changed my method.  Put a dab of glue on one end of the ribbon and make a loop, gluing one end on top of the other.  Then staple through the end.  If you have the time, you may want to glue a bunch and then staple them later, to give the glue a little time to dry a bit.  Either way, you can expect your stapler to get pretty glue-y at the end of this project, but a little glue never hurt a stapler!  Plus it peels away easily so no worries!

You may be wondering if you could do this entire project without glue.  Sure, you could.  But I wonder if it would last as long??  I put our chain in a big ziplock bag last year for storage and it was in perfect shape this year.  I think the glue is a good extra step to ensure your beautiful creation lasts.

Continue making your ribbon chain until you either run out of ribbon or interest/attention span!  

Here's a close-up of some of our chain!  I love it!  Most importantly, the clever girl thinks it is very special that SHE made the garland for our tree! 


  1. That's something great to make with your kids, I love it!!!!!

    1. Thanks! Kids are really just my excuse to make a fun garland! Anyone could make this!!


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