Day of the Dead Wreath
I have been in love with all things sugar skull for some time now. Living in the Southwest and loving bright colors and Mexican art makes it a match made in heaven. So when the movie The Book of Life came out last year and Day of the Dead exploded into the mainstream, you could not find a happier girl. I absolutely love it that I can find cool, funky Dia de los Muertos themed items everywhere! But I like nothing better than making something myself. And since I had some leftover dyed coffee filters from my Fall grapevine wreath that I wanted to use up, I knew just what to do. I made a Day of the Dead wreath and I really love how it turned out!
This is such a great project because it comes together very quickly and inexpensively and you can be as elaborate or as simple as you want. I took my time and had fun dreaming up the designs I used on my sugar skulls, but you could do a very simple pattern and make all three the same. And the total cost was about $6 because I only bought the skulls and the cardboard wreath form to make this project.
What You’ll Need
- Acrylic paint
- Permanent markers or paint pens
- Cardboard skulls
- Cardboard flat wreath form
- Dyed coffee filters
- Ribbon bits
- Hot glue gun with glue
The first step is to customize your cardboard skulls. I picked these guys up at Michaels with a coupon for $1 each. I love that each skull is a teeny bit different because they’re made of cardboard paper maché. I think it gives them a lot of character. I took some of the acrylic paint I seem to always have on hand and painted each skull a bright white to use as my base. You could do anything at all here though – paint them a bright color and use white for accents, paint them all different colors, or paint them black! Get your creative on.
After they were all white and dry – I took my time drawing designs on each one. I wanted them to all be different. My husband calls the one with the gold star the KISS one. I used a combination of acrylic paint and permanent markers to draw all the bits and bobs on each skull. If you’re feeling uninspired – use the internet as your reference point. There are TONS of beautiful sugar skulls designs that you can see online. Find one that you like and take elements from it – or just copy the design entirely.
Create your flowers the exact same way I did in my Fall grapevine wreath post. Feel free to mix colors up!
Now you just need to glue the whole mess onto your cardboard wreath form. I went with this type of form simply because it was a flat surface and really cheap ($3 with a coupon.) I had some pretty ribbons laying around so I took a bunch of complementary colors and created a bundle to glue on the bottom of the wreath. I wanted something to dangle down. I glued these on first.
Next, I glued the skulls on after eye-balling their placement. They aren’t perfectly lined up, but I like it that way. If you need it to be perfectly straight – measure it. I also added a little bit of purple twine through one of the handy holes that were already pre-drilled in the wreath form so I could hang it up later.
Then glue on your flowers. I packed them in there nice and tight, but you can add fewer flowers if you want it to look a little less scrunchy. The best part about the coffee filter flowers is the little flat space on the bottom which makes them a breeze to hot glue on.
And that’s it! You’re ready to hang that baby up! We live in a very dry climate so I opted to hang this on my front door for the holiday, but if you live in an area with lots of precipitation, you might choose to keep this wreath inside.