Quick, affordable and foolproof Christmas ornament wreaths — EZ Wreaths in 6 steps

christmas-ornament-wreath-1-3Is time running out — and you still want to try your hand at making a Christmas ornament wreath? This season I made several EZ Wreaths — or polka dot wreaths — as I call them — in a FLASH and with beautiful results. Read on for my six tips to on how to make one of these wreaths, tout suite, with virtually foolproof success.

Being the hostess with the mostess during my Wreath Mania ‘014 wreath-making party, I did not have time to make my own mega wreath then. So instead, I took a stab at making an EZ polka dot wreath — an ornie wreath lite. After they finished making their big wreaths, two of my guests jumped on this second bandwagon, and each cranked out an EZ Wreath, too. They almost couldn’t decide which they liked better — their big wreath or their EZ Wreath!

These wreaths would be much easier to accomplish with a younger crafter (SUPERVISE CLOSELY — BEWARE that high heat hot glue!) … they are great at showcasing a few, precious vintage ornaments… they use far fewer ornaments, obviously… and, they are a great way combine vintage and new ornaments economically.

DIY ornament wreath
I made this wreath for a friend. That’s a vintage pin at 10 o’clock. As you can see, I broke my own rule about three focal points and only used two.

Make and EZ Wreath aka Polka Dot Wreath:


NOTE: Our original tutorial on making Christmas ornament wreaths includes our basic instructions for materials and how to prep your ring and adhere ornaments. Read it HERE for these basics before you get started.

  1. Prepare your base –Since the tinsel is such a prominent feature on the EZ Wreath, be sure to buy and use rich, long, full tinsel. Wrap it in such a way so that it fluffs up full and nice. Note: I see vintage tinsel at the Goodwill on occasion and usually snap it up — it often seems to be better made than the tinsel today. Note, we used a 14” styrofoam form for our wreaths.
  2. Outside ring — Glue large ornaments around the outside of the wreath, taking time as you go to make sure the spacing works as well as possible — you don’t want gaps. Note: I’ve begun experimenting with ornaments the next size down for the outside ring, and they look just fine.
  3. Optional: Inside ring — If you like, glue smaller ornaments around the inside of the wreath – again, taking time as you go to get them to space evenly all the way around. Note, I show examples done both ways — with and without the inside ring or ornaments.
  4. Three focal points — Add the ornaments or items that will comprise your three focal points. The items you use for these three focal points are the key to making this wreath awesome. These should have both visual weight and contrast – nothing too dinky, or else it will get lost in the tinsel. Note how we put the three items at approximately one o’clock, 5 o’clock and 8 o’clock. This balanced asymmetry will keep your eye moving. Note: Once you grasp the three focal point “rule”, you can break it at will. I tend to like things in threes, though. I recently read somewhere that to humans, items shown in odd numbers are visually appealing, because our brain naturally tries to make pairs. When we can’t make pairs, we look harder. Or something like that.
  5. Polka dots — Add your “polka dots” – smaller ornaments that will bring additional movement and visual interest to the wreath. These can be bold to stand out… or, they can be the same color as the tinsel, to be subtley reflective.
  6. Add dimension to inside or outside rings — Finally, stand back and take a good look – if you like, add another layer of small round ornaments nestled in between the inside or outside ring of ornaments. While not a “must,” this may give added dimension and appeal.

Design tips:

  • For a fool-proof wreath, if you are a beginner: Keep your color palette simple.
I made this one. Everything is vintage except for the center rind of silver ornaments. That’s a vintage Christmas corsage at 5 o’clock.
vintage-ornament-wreath-27 Melanie made this wreath using some favorite family ornaments for the focal points.
Karen made this wreath as a gift for a family member.

  1. Betsey Dempsey says:

    I just finished my first wreath and love it! I got many ornaments for free from a neighborhood email listing asking for old ornaments. (I asked just before tree-decorating time and when trees were just coming down.) Thrift stores were also cheap sources. I was able to make the whole wreath with aged ornaments. (Probably used close to 100 of various sizes!) I love the patina too! Even found a knee-hugger elf and little tree. SO glad this article inspired me.

  2. Nancy says:

    because wreaths can be used for so many holidays. I want to try making one not only a Christmas one. but maybe one for Easter?

  3. denise says:

    Although I ogle over the multi-million ornament wreaths, I like these…like they’re a little undressed, which is right up my alley. 😀

  4. Karen says:

    Oh My Gosh Pam. I am so psyched. I adore the full-blown vintage ornament wreaths and drool over yours and Katie-doodles’ and Georgia Peaches’ wreaths. But with the EZ wreath, I feel less intimidated to try to make one! You have given me new hope that I too can make a retro wreath. Thank you so very much for all of this terrific information. And never feel you are sharing too much info with your readers…there’s a huge difference between a well-done wreath and a wreath which makes your eyeballs hurt!

  5. Kit says:

    Do you use the less than perfect old glass balls and bell shapes that look like the color has ‘pitted’ or fallen from the inside, or only the very pristine ones? Because I have many from my parents and grandparents trees that didn’t make the grade for my tree that I couldn’t bring myself to just toss! And actually several old package tie-ons made of felt that could be cute.

      1. Kit says:

        Yay! Maybe I need to get over my perfectionism and this will be a great start. And, I today pretty much all to myself! Now that is a treat.

  6. Rosemary says:

    I have made both kinds of wreaths, the full blown hang on the wall with a sitter elf, and the smaller ones, that use less ornaments and less time. For the smaller less ornate wreaths, I do not do an outside ring of ornaments. I give them as presents and they usually end up on the dining room table as a centerpiece. Both are fun to make.

  7. I actually bought a wreath like this from Georgia Peachez when I first saw them here on your site and I love it!
    The reason I got it was because I thought I would not have the time/craftiness to make one myself. but now you’re making it look pretty easy!

    We just came across a box of christmas balls from my husband’s parents’ tree that we won’t be using, Now I’m thinking I might make a wreath out of them.

    Thanks for the inspiration and encouragement!

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