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How to Make a Driftwood Stained Wood Bead Garland with Colorful Raffia Tassels

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How to make a fall-inspired driftwood stained wood bead garland with colorful raffia tassels.

One decorative accessory that has been on my radar for awhile is to add a wood bead garland to my living room. I have seen them gracing many a table, mantel or stack of books on blogs and in decorating magazines.

I have been searching for one that fits my style, but the wood bead garlands that I have found are either too neutral in color or not long enough to wrap around a stack of books or a vase a few times.  I also wanted one with driftwood stained wood beads.

I am a big fan of a driftwood finish on wood and have used it on the dining room table in my previous house, a cake stand for my kitchen and even achieved the color using craft paint to makeover natural color baskets.

Wood bead garland on fall decorated fireplace mantelDriftwood Finished Wood Bead Garland with Raffia Tassels

I finally figured that the only way I was going to get what I envisioned in my mind, was to make it myself… that is just what I did.

Wood bead garlands are a bit different from the basic decorative accessory since they are in a class all by themselves. I call them “unifiers” of the decorative accessory world as they bring together larger items to make them a cohesive unit.

Garlands used in this way also add an unexpected touch and for fall… added texture that looks especially nice in rooms decorated for the autumn season.

In my last post, I shared the tile tray that I semi-DIYed and repurposed. To keep with my “use what I have theme”, I needed to buy the wood beads to make the garland, but reused…

Orange raffia tassel with yellow bead hanging from doorknob.

…the raffia “harvest” tassels I made last fall to hang around my house.

Driftwood stained Wood bead garland with colorful raffia tassels

How to Make a Wood Bead Garland with Colorful Raffia Tassels

The Driftwood Finish stain I used on the beads warms their natural color perfectly for fall. The raffia tassels add the texture and color.

How to make and a style wood bead garland for home

supplies needed:

I used the whole bag of wood beads I bought that made my garland: 7 – 1/2 feet long.

How to Stain Wood Beads with Driftwood Stain


Step 1:  If your wood beads are natural wood you will need to stain them with Driftwood Finish or a similar weathered wood stain product.


This is easy to do with one teaspoon of Driftwood Finish Powder mixed with 1 cup of water in a bucket or bowl. Stir to mix well until powder dissolves. Use more powder or less water to create a darker color of driftwood.

Staining wood beads with driftwood stain in a kitchen sink

Step 2: Place beads in container with Driftwood Finish mix and swirl around for about 1 minute. Pour beads out using a colander to catch them as you drain the water/stain finish mixture from the bucket.

The wood beads will have a slightly black tinge, as you can see in the photo above, when they come out of the driftwood finish mix.

driftwood stained beads on tray

Step 3: Lay paper towel on a cookie sheet and pour beads onto it. Let them dry out in the sun for about 30 minutes where they will take on the weathered wood finish.

How To String Beads on Garland

4 steps to string wood beads on twine


Step 1: Cut a piece of string or twine 8-inches longer than the desired length of garland. My garland is 7-1/2 feet long. Tie a knot on one end and begin to thread beads on string/twine.

TIP: Use tape over end of twine to make threading the beads easier. It will act like a needle.

Step 2: Thread a few beads over the hanging loop on one tassel. Tie one end of the sting/twine on the end of the loop.  Make a small tight knot that will go through the hole in the beads.

Step 3: Move the beads over the knot.  You may need to help push the beads over it.

Step 4: Once the knot is covered, add beads to the remainder of the string/twine. Add the second tassel at the end of he string/twine. For this tassel, simply tie it on using a small knot to the end of the string/twine. Snip excess.

How to Make Raffia Tassels

You can find the tutorial on how to make tassels using raffia in this post: How to Make Harvest Tassels

Tray on table decorated with a wood bead garland

This driftwood bead garland with raffia is the perfect decorative accent for your fall decor.  Drape one across your mantel or twist it around candles and vases or on a stack of books for added decorative detail.

 Fall decorations on stone fireplace with white mantel

I know fall is still 3 weeks away, but since I love the season so much, I didn’t hesitate changing things out in my living room. I found the yellow woven pumpkin and the wreath at HomeGoods.

Driftwood finish and black and white tile serving tray


Don’t Have Time to Make Your Own Wood Garland with Tassels?

I found a few affordable ready-made wood bead garland with tassel options for you:

Large Wood Bead Garland with Tassels – 41″ long

White and Bronze Wood Bead Garland

Fall wood bead garland with orange and yellow raffia tassels on the ends

Fall decorated fireplace and mantel

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  1. This gives me inspiration on many levels. I love the basket in the fireplace box filled w/ fall colors. 90+ degrees in GA today. Come on Autumn!!

    1. Hi Helen –

      Raffia comes from palm leaves that can grow to over eighty feet long, the longest leaves in the plant kingdom. The leaves are cut without harming the plant so they regrow which makes Raffia a renewable resource. Raffia is an extremely durable so you can crochet with it since it comes in long strands. It takes dye really well also, that is why I like to use it and not the natural color which is a light tan color. You can buy it at craft stores.