DIY Christmas Garland Using Real Branches

Marly Dice
by Marly Dice
6 Materials
4 Hours

This DIY Christmas garland is gorgeous, budget-friendly, and smells wonderful. It is a bit of work so keep that in mind before doing it! I will say that even though it is a lot of work, it is totally worth it - especially if you're trying to keep the holiday decor budget-friendly. See the full tutorial for this DIY project here.

Attach cheap garland to your handrails

This is super cheap garland that I got from Walmart. I used zip ties to attach the garland. It looks quite small on my staircase which is why I wanted to beef it up!

Gather lots of real pine stems

We have a tree line of pine trees so I cut a bunch of branches off of it. If you don't have pine trees, see if your family members or friends have any trees you can cut from branches off of.

Hot glue real branches for faux garland

Start hot gluing your branches to the faux garland so that they hang down.

Keep gluing the branches so they hang downward

They should eventually start to look like this! Don't worry, the more you add the more you will beef it up!

Hot glue horizontal layers

To cover up the top of the stems, glue more branches so that they lay horizontal. Keep adding more layers until it's nice and full.

Plan for swag

I really wanted swag to hang down the newel posts on either side. I realized I had to make them entirely of real branches.

Hot glue and tie together branches to make swags

To make the swags, I laid out a bunch of branches over top each other. Then I hot glued them together. To keep them secure I had to also use string and tie each branch together.

Complete swag

This is how the swag should look when it's done. You can see the red string and where I tied each branch.

Tie the swag to the newel post

I used my string to do this step too. I had to remove the bow to do this and then re-secure it.

Secure the bow
Add remaining items & Enjoy!

I added a few more branches throughout, pinecones and some other faux greenery I had on hand. I got TONS of compliments on this DIY project.

Remember that because they are real branches, they won't last forever. I had mine up for 3-4 weeks, which was about the longest it lasted.

Resources for this project:
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Marly Dice
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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  1 question
  • Melody Boling Medlock Melody Boling Medlock on Nov 03, 2020

    After they died in 3-4 weeks were you able to remove them and replace with new ones? Also did you have any issues with sap or pine needles 'll over your floor and stairs? I have been wanting to decor with real pine branches. I think this year is the year to go for it. I just want to be prepared for any issues that might arise. It turned out beautiful for you. I'm sure the smell was pretty amazing as well.

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2 of 11 comments
  • turned out Beautiful

  • Melissa Swan Melissa Swan on Nov 09, 2022

    I absolutely adore it. I don't have stairs as I live in a motor home. I do however have a huge porch and will hang this all around my porch. Maybe some twinkle lights woven in as well?