Looking for an easy project for fall? Here are instructions for a DIY Paper Bag Leaf Garland that you can make from recycled supplies.
The other day I was sitting at my house minding my own business along with The Real Housewives of Dubai’s and I got a text.
My favorite kind of text that read something like this:
“My friend has a piece of furniture that needs a home. She’s giving it away to the first person that can pick it up by the end of the day. Are you interested?”
Am I interested?
Is the sky blue?
Is the grass green?
Are stirrup pants here to stay?
I was on my way over to the house to pick it up before The Real Housewives were done with Caroline’s wedding celebration. Just between us–I wasn’t sure what to expect. It’s hard to tell from pictures what a piece of furniture really looks like. How big it is. How wide it is. What the wood tones look like in person.
But it was FREE.
And free always looks amazing to me.
So I picked it up and brought it home and wait until you see what it looks like now.
Just like this.
Isn’t it beautiful?
It’s hard to tell from the pictures, but it’s about six feet tall and four feet wide and it’s the REAL DEAL. It’s an antique piece that’s SO HEAVY and made of this wood that looks like it personally made the trip with the pilgrims on the Mayflower.
I’m not sure what it was used for before. Maybe storage in a hardware store or grocery store?
It’s made up of 32 individual cubbies.
There are a zillion uses for cubbies like this.
Here are some of the ideas I came up with if you have a piece like this:
- Storage: you could add family photos to the outside of the shelves and give each person a row to store their stuff
- Throw blankets: Keep stacks in the cubbies for those times when you need an extra layer of warmth
- File folders: organize your files in the different cubbies
- Craft supplies: great for craft supply storage with ribbons and paint brushes
- Paint supplies: such a great way to display all those individual paint containers and faux finish supplies
- Magazines: these cubbies are the perfect size to store collections of magazines
- Dishes: Use the cubbies to store dishes and platters and serving pieces
- Linens: Fold up vintage linens and store them in the individual cubbies
- Fabric: If you have a fabric collection, this is the perfect piece to store yards of fabric
Now those are all amazing ideas (some of which I’m going to use for the future).
But for now?
I filled it with books.
There was the most amazing set of vintage books that I bought downtown at an antique shop and I’d been looking for the perfect place to store them.
This piece was made for them.
I filled the shelves with the books and then added pumpkins for fall.
Then I added this vintage metal sign I bought years ago in Kentucky (it used to hang in our bedroom there).
And made paper bag leaves for the side of the piece.
They are such an easy DIY for fall.
Remember when I made book page leaves for the hutch in the hallway?
This project was just like that except I used paper bags.
You can recycle paper bags from the grocery store or even use craft paper for the project.
DIY Paper Bag Leaf Garland
Making paper leaves is a fun and easy way to add fall to a hutch or bookcase like this. And best of all, it’s a great way to recycle old newspapers or scrap paper.
Here’s how to do it:
1. Gather your materials. You’ll need some paper, scissors, double-sided tape, and a bit of imagination.
2. Cut out your leaves. You can use any shape or size you like. Just make sure all the leaves are roughly the same size to create the garland. Lightly crinkle the leaves to give them an aged and dried effect.
3. Tape the leaves to the piece of furniture. Start by applying a piece of double-stick tape to the end of one leaf, then attach it to the corner of the bookcase. Keep adding leaves until you create a garland effect on one side.
4. Stand back as the garland is taking shape to check on the garland’s progress.
5. I used about 40 leaves to create a garland of this size.
It’s decorated and ready to go.
The text my friend sent me was fortuitous because the twins shopped the house for their apartments and we had a few empty spaces that needed to be filled.
My new vintage bookcase is all set up in the office and ready for fall. It’s keeping me company as I write this post. And as I glance over at it—one thought keeps running through my mind.
Have you ever seen FREE look so pretty? 🙂