After much pondering, staring at blank spaces, internet trolling, a few debates, and even a blog post venting about some of my favorite wall hangings, and how I need help choosing one, I finally came to a decision about which type of wall hanging to make to put over our bed. I get weirdly stressed out when it comes to making DIY decisions – probably because there’s always that probability that the result will look like something I made in preschool and then I’ve just wasted precious hours outta my day and dollars outta my pocket on 4 year old craft time. To help ease the stress, I go after easier looking projects with less room for error so I can feel better about myself and fine tune my inner craftswoman enough to reupholster a chair…someday.
Well, great news, this DIY wall hanging that I put together using my small, carny-like, hands was a “satisfyingly easy” on a scale from soul-crushing->satisfyingly easy. And, it gave me an excuse to get outside, go to the park and rummage through the bushes with urban dogs for sticks. I think my mother was slightly concerned that I quit my 9-5 to collect sticks all day but I assured her I was making something really cool that would change the world.
I had come across this DIY wall hanging project and it looked achievable so I decided to make something similar but put my own spin on it.
Correct, just two materials. Well I guess three if you include scissors. Here’s where I got mine:
- Stick: From the great outdoors. If you are in an area that is lacking in it’s stick selection then turn to Etsy or a local craft store – there should be plenty of options at both.
- Yarn: “Thick-N-Thin” Skeins from Ashland Bay (this stuff is the best!)
If I had one tip about the materials that you get for this project, that would be: get good quality yarn! Don’t know what good quality vs. bad quality yarn means? This article explains what to look for.
For this project, I wanted to mix thick and thin yarn to add some texture and the yarn that I got from Ashland Bay was just that and then some. Ashland Bay is a fiber/yarn wholesaler offering North America the largest selection of high-quality dyed fibers, ecru fiber and yarns from around the world. In case you are wondering what “ecru” means, it is the natural color of the fiber as it comes off the animal – aka un-dyed not white. The yarn I used for this project is from a Peruvian Merino, which is a type of sheep, making me feel instantly more cultured having a Peruvian sheep wall hanging over my head at night. I’m so worldly.
One thing to note about Ashland Bay’s yarn is that it needs to be conditioned before use. It is so freshly made that the yarn still has spinning oils on the fibers so you need to let the yarn soak in some warm soapy water for about 20 minutes and then let it dry out. I actually really enjoyed this part, because I got to watch the yarn plump up in front of my eyes to almost double it’s size. Reminded me of those magic capsules that you would put in water and a little sponge elephant would “grow.” Was anyone else fascinated with these as a kid/young adult?
Once you have your materials all ready to go, plop down on your couch, turn on Workaholics or whatever you’re into, and get to work on tying some knots. It’s kind of therapeutic. I invited over one of my girlfriends to do this with me and it was a lovely way to catch and create something art at the same time.
Here’s the play-by-play on how to tie the yarn to your stick…that sounded kind of dirty:
Once I was done tying all of the yarn to the stick, I got super random and started braiding and tying knots all over the place. I did braids of different widths, knots of different sizes, some braids and knots together – go wild and choose your own journey.
The last step was to grab my scissors and snip the ends a bit. I wanted an uneven, textured look at the bottom so I cut some pieces shorter than others.
I used a piece of twine to tie around the ends of the stick to hang. And that’s it! Satisfyingly easy right?
**A special thanks to Ashland Bay for sponsoring this post!**