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DIY Pinecone Garland

by amym

Sometimes red and green flashing lights and an inflatable Santa perched on your roof are the best way to decorate for the holidays. Sometimes not. For those not times, I find myself really attracted to natural trimmings that don’t scream Christmas. Added bonus, your shame is lessened when you don’t get around to taking them down until January, okay, February 15th. Heck, keep um up all year. I won’t tell.  – Amy Merrick

*Editor’s note: Amy’s wreath class in Portland this weekend sold out so fast we added a second class due to demand. If you’re in town you can sign up for the Sunday class here! -grace

The rest of the post and the full how-to after the jump!

I’ve been seeing several varieties of pine cone garlands in shops this year, they are really easy to make and a long lasting alternative to the classic but temporary white pine roping that dominates in December. To make a 6 foot garland, you’ll need about 75 pinecones, wire (I used this paper wrapped variety that looks like twine) and a length of jute twine.

Start by cutting 4″ long lengths of wire and wiring each pinecone at the top by simply wrapping the wire around the cone once, so that the wire goes under the ridges.

Take a piece of thicker twine and knot a loop at the top. Then attach your pinecones, tightly twisting the wire as you would a twist tie. Travel down the twine, catching the previous cone’s wire with your next twist.

Continue for way longer than you would anticipate it taking. A movies worth of work, so pop in It’s a Wonderful Life and get stringing.


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  • I’ve read that if you take pinecones from the yard, they have to be baked to get rid of pests, etc. Do you know at what temperature and for how long, or is this just a myth? I would love to make a wreath from all the pinecones we have outside.

    • arli

      amy is out here in portland with me so i don’t know if she’ll catch this, but i did some googling and it looks like if you pull them from the yard it’s best to bake them at 200 degrees on a foil-lined baking sheet for about 45 min to an hour to kill bugs, etc.


  • Wow, talk about a great take on an old classic! The whole mantelscape is superb. Wow. I’m all for glitter and glitz, but I sure love seeing holiday decor that I can keep up through the winter blahs.

  • Oh my…this is ABSOLUTELY STUNNING! I just purchased that twine from Jamali and can’t wait to do a project like this with my daughters over Winter Break. Thank you and Cheers!

  • YAY – you had one of these garlands on a wish list (early this week I think?) and immediately I wanted to give it a try… was planning on trip to the park to score some cones this weekend.. and hello! here is the tutorial!! Merci!

  • Terrific garland. And it should last for years.

    Peaches…you could make the garland and then paint some color (white, gold, silver) on the cones or just put glitter on the tips.

  • really unusual. i love decorations that work for all of winter, just adding christmas bits for a wink in the beginning and paring it down again. this looks perfect for that. our tiny cones would make a sweet garland x

  • The pine cone garlands are wonderful -and I LOVE the oil painting in the first photo. Any idea who the artist is?
    Again, so pretty -a wonderful post!

  • Finally a use for the vast quantity of spruce cones in my yard! What a pretty display.

  • That is too cool. And to think of all the times I chucked out pinecones that my daughter and niece dragged in the house ….

  • This idea has won me over! It also inspires me to take a walk in the woods tomorrow, to find some pinecones. As for the bugs, i don’t mind them, it’s part of nature :))

  • How about a garland made from sand dollars/star fish and sea shells?
    Or a garland made from real Holly leaves?
    Or a garland made from chili peppers and dried indian corn with the husks pulled back and still attached on the end.

  • Such a great idea!
    And did you know if you soak pine cones in water they close up and then they’ll open again as they dry out. It’s a fun science activity for kids to watch. I don’t know if it works if you bake them first.
    I have collected pine cones off and on for years and never baked them, but my mom was always one to say “leave them on the porch before you bring them in.” When I asked why… “so the bugs can crawl out.”

  • What a great seasonal idea for the holidays. Table tops, railings, fireplaces. Great thoughts for a unique touch to the home.

  • oh, i just love finding uses for pine cones! i relived my childhood recently and dipped some in glue and (tons of) gold glitter. they are perfect for the holidays!

  • My 11 yr old daugter loves pine cones and has amassed quite a collection. I think this is the solution to all of them laying around! We’ll swag in on the window of her rustic bedroom! Thank you for sharing!

  • Hello, just wondering if you have info. on the lovely painting in thr background. I’m an artist and I’d love to see it get credit too.

  • I have a question, how you can take out of the pine cones resin?? I found some of them in a trip but I can’t utilize them for that reason, any idea??

    • The baking will also make the sap come out of the cones and harden on the baking sheet, so it solves 2 issues.

  • Thank you for the tip on cooking the pinecones- I had gathered several lovely cones last week, kept them in a bag and put them to the side and forgot about them until the next day. The warmth of the house woke up quite a few rather big bugs, which was a surprise! At least they were still in the bag and I just shook them out outside, but I didn’t trust the cones so I tossed them into the yard. I wondered what a solution could be! This is a very cute project. I love garlands.

  • You can find the paper-covered wire (oasis bind wire) at florist supply stores/sites and on Amazon and ebay. Or use florist wire (much cheaper).