Athens culture, stylishly tailored

DIY Paint Chip Wreath

The temperatures in Ohio have been super warm lately, so I thought a bright, cute DIY project would be a fun way to welcome spring! (I know there’s another entire month until spring ACTUALLY begins…but a girl can dream.)

The great thing about this project is: it costs next to nothing to make!



Materials needed:

  • 2 wire hangers
  • scissors
  • glue gun
  • twine
  • 50-60 paint chips
    • NOTE: You need 50-60 leaves. So if you find the paint chips that are divided into four similar colors, then you would need less paint chips – saving paper and money. Don’t throw away the scraps, as you could use them for future crafting sesh’s!
    • SECOND NOTE: I felt a bit guilty picking up this many paint samples, but it turns out a lot of companies don’t discourage this. While they certainly don’t ENcourage it – there are other ways of going about obtaining these. Read about it here! 



CAREFULLY unwind the hanger hook and bend the entire wire into a circle. Re-wind the ends around each other. Repeat this for the second hanger as well.



Fold the desired color paint chip in half and cut a leaf-like semi circle out of it. Be careful not to crease it too harshly because you will cause the color to flake off.



Your final piece should look something like this. Repeat this with as many colors as you want! Your final number of leaves should be somewhere between 50-60.

I decided to make a green ombre wreath, but choose whatever colors or patterns speak to you!



I would honestly be perfectly okay with stopping here and just scattering these cute lil’ leaves about my apartment – because they low-key make me feel like I live in a story book *no shame in that sentence* – but I won’t.



Lay one wire circle on the other and tie together where the wires naturally touch. Make sure to secure them with strong knots and then wrap the twine around the wire as much as you desire.

IMPORTANT: Wrap the sharp ends of the wire as well so they don’t poke anyone! See below.



I ended up LOVING the way this looked and would have wrapped the entire thing if time permitted – the outcome may have been a little different, but I’m eager to try to make a “wicker” wreath out of this brown twine!



Arrange three to four leaves together and hot glue them to the wire. I chose to start on a thicker part of the wreath.



After this I continued working around the wreath, hot gluing leaves on one by one until I achieved the look I was going for. It’s important to note: start out with the bare minimum around the wreath and then go back to fill in places that look bare. I got a bit carried away on the left side, creating a thicker part than the rest of the wreath, but I can always go back and fill those in!

It’s also important to say that you don’t have to cut them all the same size, nor do they have to be perfectly aligned when gluing them on. In fact, the offset leaves add a bit of life to it.



You could definitely add other cute things to this project like little twigs (as I experimented with above), fruit, fake animals or even a name plate in the middle. Totally customizable to your taste!



This was my final product and although I will probably go back and fill in the parts that look a little bare, I LOVE how it turned out! Super cheerful and it will make my dining table look a bit more home-y.

Happy Tuesday y’all!

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How to Henna

Whether it is a traditional South Asian wedding or the Coachella Music Festival – henna has become one of the most popular forms of body art. These temporary tattoos that are also known as ‘mehendi’ in some cultures are painless brown patterns that last on your body for one to two weeks. “My grandma used to crush the leaves and use the paste to draw henna”, says Michelle Michael, a graduate student at Ohio University. A Sri Lankan by origin, Michelle grew up drawing henna on her sisters and now draws it for anyone enthusiastic enough to try it. We asked her how a beginner should go about doing henna and she told us her secrets.

  • Get a henna cone

While you can go find a henna tree, cut the leaves, grind the leaves and make a paste out of it – it can be a little difficult and time-consuming. These day, it is easier to find henna that is packaged in a cone. Look for one on any online shopping website (not from a shady one!) and buy a few so you can practice before you draw it on someone. “Cut the tip of the cone”, says Michelle and press the cone gently so that the henna falls out. For bigger lines you can cut a larger hole on the top of the cone but Michelle suggests pressing the cone harder. Try putting on a little bit on yourself to see how your skin is reacting to it before you go all out.


  • Practice, practice, practice

“Practice makes it perfect”, says Michelle. “So don’t get frustrated if your first attempt takes forever”. Start simple by looking for easy henna designs online – flowers, geometric patterns and images of creepers are commonly used in henna drawings. Get inspiration online or on Instagram – while starting out go for the chunkier designs with minimal elements and as you progress get more intricate with your patterns.

  • Start small

In the Indian subcontinent people decorate their palms (and sometimes go up till their elbows) during festivals or other celebrations. A bride would typically even cover her feet in henna. Some people also don’t shy away from unconventional spots like a design on the back of their shoulder or a circular pattern on their upper arm. But if henna is a newer hobby for you, you can also try drawing it on just a finger. “It can be intricate”, says Michelle, “but it doesn’t have to fill up your entire hand”.

  • Just have fun

Michelle says, “Me and my sisters, we just like doing henna.” So don’t think that every design you do needs to be a masterpiece. You don’t have to follow shapes or rules, just play around with henna. Once you have practiced the designs you have seen and can replicate them to your own satisfaction, try making your own designs and adding a little bit of your personality to them.

Once you have put on henna it is best to let it rest for 5 to 6 hours, try putting it on right before you go to bed and then washing it off when you wake up. The dry henna will be washed off and only the pattern on your body will remain. Usually henna has a reddish-brown tint and the hue of it will depend on your skin tone. Based on the henna you used the patterns can last anywhere from one to two weeks. Want to make your henna last longer? Sprinkle lime juice on it or dab it with a mixture of water and sugar when it gets dry.

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