As we mentioned before, this is our favorite time of year for DIY decor. The chill is in the air and the leaves are changing color, and there’s no better way to preserve the delight than by welcoming it into your home. Yes, the craft stores overflowing with autumn decorations can be intimidating, but there are ways to turn those faux autumn leaves into something beautiful and functional. Below are instructions for your very own autumn leaf bowl, perfect for holding your favorite scented potpourri or tasty Halloween treats.
Craft store leaf garland, Mod Podge (matte finish), Foam Brush, Balloon, Scissors, Mixing bowl
*Tip: try to find thin, paper-like leaves for your garland. The thinner the leaves, the better they will mold to the shape of your balloon. Also, avoid any plastic-coated leaves.
1. Begin by snipping the leaves off the strand of garland. Leave about 1/8″ at the base.
2. Carefully rip the entire plastic stem (and all the veins!) off of the faux leaves (See image above). This will help the leaves mold to the shape of the balloon.
3. Fill up your balloon to size. We stuck ours inside a mixing bowl to keep it in place.
4. With your mod podge in a cup near by, gently apply a thin layer on top of your balloon, starting in the middle and working your way out.
5. Lay a leaf on top of the wet mod podge and smooth with your fingers or foam brush. Once it’s stuck in place, apply another thin layer of mod podge on top of that leaf. See image below.
6. Repeat, covering any empty spaces with smaller leaves.
7. When you reach about a quarter of the way down the balloon, add one or two leaves to the bottom of the bowl for extra weight and support. Allow to dry at least an hour.
8. When the mod podge is dry, carefully pop your balloon with a pin at the tied end, slowly letting the air out. Don’t be alarmed if the leaves shrink down when the balloon deflates, it will return to its original shape after a minute or so. You may find that some of the mod podge will stick to the edges of your leaves, but you can just pick or cut it off.
9. Use your bowl to hold potpourri or little wrapped halloween candies. We love easy ways to liven up your home decor and this colorful DIY does the job well.
**Attention readers! Having trouble getting your leaves to stick? We’re here to help. Be sure you remove the plastic “stems” from the faux leaves before trying to adhere them to your balloon. After you apply a layer of Mod Podge to your balloon, wait about 30 seconds or until the paste feels sticky, then gently press on your first leaves. If they start to bend upward, hold the leaves down at the tips with your finger. Keep a moist towel nearby to wipe any glue off your hands. This will help the leaves from sticking to your fingers. Feel free to comment below and ask questions – we’ll email you as soon as possible!**