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a month, a week, and a day away

… from today, is Halloween!

My Illinois BFF, Jen, called me at 8:34 AM this past Monday morning and was buzzing about a blog that she had just found and completely loved. There was a craft on that blog that SHE AND I HAD to do … right now! (yep, that is her above, I know, she’s super pretty, and yeah, I adore her!)

HERE is the blog … and the project … that we I did that very day.

And here is the story of exactly how that went down:

I jumped in my car, which was serendipitously filled with gas just the day before, and headed out to the closest  99¢ Only Store, which is exactly 3.3 miles from my house, to buy the necessary supplies. There, I found 11 black feather boas, 4 packages of black and gray gauze, 4 black glitter skulls, and 2 silver glitter skulls.  From there I drove across the street to Hobby Lobby and purchased 2 foam wreath forms, using a 40% off coupon for one of those wreaths. Total amount spent – $33.79 plus tax.

I came home, knowing full well that the eleven skimpy $1 boas were not going to cover two wreaths, but I needed to see just how many boas it would take before I headed out for more. First, with a glib sense of accomplishment, I used my iPhone to snap photo of my newly purchased supplies and sent it off to Jen, saying, “I Got Mine!”

Her quick reply, “#@&*!% where did u find it and how much did u pay – I struck out #&*+@%!!!” (I know, who would think that a girl, so gorgeous, would have such a trucker’s mouth, but she does, just one of the billion things I love about her!)

Ha! Winning! I looked at those skimpy boas and knew that I’d need to somehow blacken up those white foam wreaths, so I wrapped each with a section of the black gauze first and then began wrapping one of the wreaths with boas. It took 9 boas to cover. Time to get back in the car and find 7 more boas before Jen got hers! That is, if I was going to be the ultimate Halloween wreath winner, and that was certainly my intention!!!

I drove to two different Dollar Tree stores, the first was 2.5 miles from my house and the other was 2.6 miles from the first store. Neither had black boas. Shoot! OK, I had to find out where the next closest 99¢ Only Store was.

To make a very long story short – I ended up driving another 38 miles to four different 99¢ Only Stores and only came up with 4 more black boas. I wasn’t feeling like such a winner now! I got on the 101 freeway to head home, quite a bit defeated, when I remembered that there was a Jo-Ann’s just off the Indian Bend off-ramp. I ducked in and purchased a very thick and plush $8.99 six-foot black boa for $4.49, using my iPhone Jo-Ann app 50% off coupon.

Now the cost of the project, that I didn’t even know existed until six hours and 50 miles prior, had come to a total of $38.28 plus tax…. plus a quarter tank of gas, half a day, and a boatload of frustration!

But hey, don’t they look great? Plus, I assembled, put up, and even lit up my wreaths (the skulls have little lights inside) before my sweet Jen even found a single piece of glitter!!! Monday was a wasteland for her. Poor Jenny!

Yeah, my girl was still out searching every Hobby Lobby, Micheal’s, Jo-Ann’s, and dollar store in a 50 mile radius of her house for the supplies the next morning.

Gotta love women on a mission!

Obviously, you can read and follow the directions on that original blog post by the creative and very funny woman who first created these wreaths. She explains it perfectly! But I did make a couple changes, one because it makes more sense and the other out of necessity.

She cut up pieces of wire and bent them to use as pins for putting together the wreath. I just used greening pins, which are cheap, great to have on hand for a multitude of home projects, and available at all the craft stores and flower shops. That was my “better” idea.

I was not able to find small styrofoam glitter sculls, so I had to figure out someway to attached the ones I did find. They were made of hard plastic. I noticed they had that little plastic tag-holder thingy on the back. Instead of cutting it off, like I would usually do, I used it to my advantage.

I took some black string (left from the tag hanger off the boas) and tied it to the plastic tab…

…then tied and knotted the string around a greening pin and pushed the pin into the foam – worked like a charm!

For whatever reason, the skulls look silver and white here, but the silver looking ones are actually black and the white looking ones are silver. Must be the light and reflection in the lens.

See, silver, not white.

AND NOW… Here are a few of Jen’s details and her gorgeous finished wreath…umm, that she completed the day after me… on Tuesday. 🙂

Jen went with oval grapevine wreaths. She had the hardest time finding reasonably priced boas, so she bought enough to do one wreath now (by going to 3 different stores and using % off coupons to buy 1 boa at a time) and will go back in the next couple days to buy the rest needed for her second wreath.

Jen did have more luck with the skulls, as you can see!  She ended up using the six skulls on the left, spray painting them and glittering them, herself.

Here they are out in the yard, drying in the Chicago sunshine.

And here is Jen’s awesome oval Halloween wreath! Oooh, I like the addition of the spider! In all honesty, I think her wreath looks a whole bunch spookier and a whole lot better than mine!

If all this doesn’t put you in the Halloween spirit, I don’t know what will!  Remember it’s only a month, a week, and a day away! xoxo


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7 comments

1 Karen { 09.22.12 at 11:45 AM }

Hello Linda! It’s me. Karen. Maker of the original wreath. 🙂 Good job on your wreaths! Both yours and your friend’s look GREAT. And thanks to Jen for spreading the word about my blog. ~ karen! p.s. I cut wire because I already have scads of stiff wire. Good idea tho on the floral wire!

2 Linda Hopkins { 09.22.12 at 11:52 AM }

Hi Karen! Jen and I are obsessed with your blog….I’m adding it to my blog roll right this second. You are so creative and way too funny! As Jen said to me when she called that Monday morning, “I f*&%ing love her, she could be our third amigo!” Thanks for the inspiration! xoox

3 Marissa { 09.22.12 at 12:52 PM }

Haha you guys are ridiculous!

4 Linda Hopkins { 09.22.12 at 2:19 PM }

Missy May, You mean, ridiculously awesome!!! Right?

5 Sheila { 09.22.12 at 3:04 PM }

That is HIL AR IOUS! I saw the same thing on a blog and was thinking of making one to hang on my big entry mirror. They are both very Halloween-y!

6 jen { 09.29.12 at 9:54 AM }

Like Linda said – we are obsessed with Karen’s web site!! I love the creative stuff she does but most importantly, she is so dang funny!! I wish I could tell you the entire story about these wreaths because it is hysterical – I had my mom practically crying she was laughing so hard!! But….I am finally done!! I lost track of how much I spent – literally!! I have decided that I can’t get a bargain on anything…..It’s just not in my blood…..my husband would agree!! haha besides the money spend, the 3 tanks of gas, almost killing someone who wouldn’t take my 40% off coupon, and countless hours – I think they turned out really good!! So I have decided that whatever is shown to readers on how to save money – I will show them the other version – how to spend as much as possible on the same project!! haha!!

7 Lourdes { 07.11.16 at 5:26 PM }

Love the story and the halloween spooky wreaths! Sheila’s idea of decorating a mirror sounds awesome. I’d find a cheap ornate mirror and spray paint it black or charcoal with maybe some silver accents. Then strategically place your boas or garland, the gray & black gauze, skulls, spiders, etc. all over.

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