So I have been in full on nesting mode lately. Decorating everything in sight. The only thing is… I am on a strict budget, and when you are trying to save money you can’t just go drop bank on expensive fall decorations. The good news is: you don’t have to. Essentially you can decorate for fall with things you find right in your backyard. This year, I used pinecones, and I have to say… for a project that was pretty much free I am very happy with the results.
What you will need: pinecones , foil, baking pans, paint brushes, a variety of acrylic paint, paintbrushes, Jute twine
The very first thing I did was collect the pinecones. For the love of all that’s holy don’t buy pinecones, they are so expensive at craft stores and it blows my mind because they are all over the place!! If you can’t find them at home, take a bag with you to the park and collect some. Or better yet, have your kids go on a pinecone hunt. They would love that! I found a ton out in my backyard… And I am not going to lie I took some of my neighbors too. Haven’t you heard? Pinecones are always browner in your neighbor’s yard;) You want to look for pinecones that have a hard surface, and are not rotting. You can tell when they are rotting because they have a mushy texture and will deteriorate in your hand.
I baked my pinecones next. This step is non-negotiable. Let me tell you why. You bring a hundred pinecones in your house and you don’t bake them. You put them on your kitchen table and you go to sleep. You wake up, but while you are sleeping hundreds of little bug nests hatched in your home, and now you have to call the exterminator or…(my personal choice) burn the house down. Not. Good. Bake. Yo. Pinecones.
Preheat your oven to 250 degrees. Line your baking sheets with foil and bake your pinecones for 1 hour. That will be enough to eliminate any impending bug invasions on your home.
Next comes the fun part. Painting. You can choose whatever paint colors you want. I used an array of bright colors not typically used for fall, but that’s just what I felt like I wanted. You just do you. Either way, acrylic paint is cheap so go wild with it!!
As you can see I just painted random parts of the pinecone. I wanted it to be still brown in parts. If you decide you want to paint the whole pinecone I would suggest getting spray paint, because that will be a quicker way to get full coverage into all of those nooks and crannies.
I let my pinecones dry overnight before I started to string them on the jute. You can get jute at any local craft store for about $3. I chose jute because it is thick enough to use for a garland, and it just seems very fall to me.
You will have to cut your jute to the length that you want for your garland first. Then you will start at one end and just wrap it around the top of the pinecone. I didn’t even tie a knot, because the pinecone held the string in place without it. I just wrapped the jute around a couple times and it stayed in place, then I moved on to the next pinecone.
You have garland!! It really is that simple. All you have to do is hang it and there you go.
I hung mine from my pot rack because I thought it would look like the pinecones were falling freely like they do in fall, but you can really hang these wherever you want.
They would look great on a porch, or you could even just skip the garland step altogether and just put them in glass jars for a fall centerpiece. Either way, it is a great, CHEAP project that is just about as easy as can be. So get to picking some pinecones y’all! Fall is officially here!