How NOT to make a magnolia leaf wreath

How NOT to make a magnolia leaf wreath

magnolia leavesVisions of gold magnolia leaf wreaths throughout my house and studio were glimmering in my mind. My backyard was full of foraged magnolia branches. Having read numerous “how to” and “diy”artaicles I settled on one  using ModPodge.

The directions called for applying ModPodge on one side of the magnolia leaf, let it dry and then do the same to the other side. After doing a zillion leaves this way, and getting the magnolia leaves stuck on the paper that was covering my dining room table, I realized that maybe this was not for me. Oh… and of course my fingers were glued together and Beau ( my rescue dog) and I were a bit ditzy from all those gluey leaves.

The next step:  Spray paint the ModPodged leaves gold but THEN I found magnolia leaves creases all over the magnolia leaves and paper was stuck to them. SO…. I ditched my many hours of working on the darned leaves and started with fresh magnolia leaves(skipping the sticky ModPodge) that I sprayed gold and then put a clear adhesive on them.

Wreath frame

The DIYers claim that a wire wreath frame is the best for attaching the magnolia leaves.. However, I couldn’t wire them on correctly so I resorted to a grapevine wreath frame .That was the ticket! My wreath wouldfinally be created! A simple grapevine wreath would  to turn into a beautiful gold magnolia leaf wreath.

Glue Gun

The next step: Glue the magnolia leaves onto the frame with a glue gun, my new blazing toy. And by blazing, I mean HOT!… I almost melted my outdoor wrought iron table. Yes, and this time the fumes and I were outside.  For me, the challenge with the glue gun was that it left strings like spider webs all over the leaves and work. I am not sure how to avoid the strings… it is like not have cotton candy be sticky.

The leaves were all glued on but I could still see the stems and didn’t know quite know how to cover them, so that is where the my backyard pine cones come in handy. I glued pinecones (from my backyard) all around the inside of the wreath and it reminded me of a tribal head piece I had once seen somewhere in Africa or Asia. By the way, If you want a gorgeous magnolia wreath then I highly recommend the Magnolia Company. That is where I will be getting my magnolia wreath next year.


As you can tell from the photo, I keep the head piece/wreath and relegated it to hang on the porch. But the pinecones… oh my… that was fun. I have so manymagnolia leaf wreath pinecones in the woods around my house that it was like treasure hunting or maybe truffle hunting (which I have never done).

Spray Paint

Spray painting your pinecones prior to gluing them on to the wreath is the best way to go. Although If you want a stunning pinecone wreath au natural, the king of pinecone wreaths is David Sweeney His wreathsare a piece of art that you will treasure for years.

After the spray painting and glue gun melting, I sprayed my new wreath with a lacquer finish that I had in the closet. I think any gloss spray would do the trick. Then I spray painted all the left-over pinecones and branches I spray painted them …. Not quite sure what to do with them but I am sure I will find a place.

Please share your comments and let me know your experiences with making wreaths! Happy Holidays!!!