Christmas Paper Garland – Holly Leaves
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Instead of buying a garland of fresh evergreen holly to decorate your home for the holiday season or a festive party, try this Christmas craft project that can be hung on a Christmas tree, over a cabinet, fireplace mantel or door frame. It’s simple to make with paper holly leaves.
In this post you will find links to both the free printable leaf pattern and a pretty French script paper for you to download to make this DIY Christmas garland. Links are later down in the post.
Instead of using a Christmas garland of greenery for my kitchen this year I made a garland out of French script paper that I cut into the shape of holly leaves. It is a take on paper chain garlands where each leaf is linked together without the need of tape or glue.
When I think about how I am going to decorate my home for Christmas each year, the biggest factor is that whatever I do, I like to add a few old-fashioned or vintage look for the holidays – it brings back fond Christmas memories from my childhood.
I always pick out a color scheme each year. This year I am going to use black, white, and my favorite color of green.
Holly is a universally appealing symbol of the holidays, but I gave it a vintage twist. Since I don’t use red in my decor, I chose to make a holly garland out of vintage looking paper that I made in Photoshop and then added lots of glitter.
l love using glitter for holiday decorations and not just any glitter, but white that has opalescent tints.
I made 3 rows of leaves for the garland. Each row is separate and held together under the greenery where the garland attaches to the cabinet.
Two rows with the pretty handwritten French script antique paper – one with and one without glitter. I cut the 3rd row of leaves from book pages.
Once printed and cut out, the holly leaves link together – no tape or staples needed. When the holidays are over, the garland can be quickly taken apart and stored to use for another year.
And don’t think that the way I made this is the only way to make it.
Look what reader, Laurie-Jean made after reading my post. Don’t you love how she added her own style to make her garland? It is so pretty.
How to Make a Paper Holly Leaf Christmas Garland
supplies & materials needed:
- .pdf holly pattern printed on card stock to use as a cutting template
- paper –you can use book pages, scrapbook paper, maps, wall paper, or Christmas wrapping paper – card stock does not work well – it is too rigid
- greenery – I clipped a few cedar branches from my yard
- florist wire
- 6 ball style ornaments
- 2 small pine cones
- wire cutters
- cup hooks, tape, or a paper clips (hanging trick below)
- mini pom-pom
- spray glue
- white glue
The antique French script printable and holly template can be adapted to any size using your computer printer.
Time needed: 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Tutorial: How to Make a Christmas Garland of Paper Holly Leaves
- Print Out the Holly Leaf Pattern
Print Holly Pattern.pdf onto a piece of card stock, cut out.
- Print French Script Paper
If using, print out a few copies of the paper depending on how long your garland will be.
Print antique French script .pdf free printable to use for holly leaves.
- Trace Leaf Pattern
Once you get the pattern printed on card stock, use it to trace the shape onto paper. The card stock is only for the holly template.
I used a book page, but wallpaper, scrapbook paper, and sheet music all work well.
- Cut Out the Holly Leaves
To speed the cutting-out process: Layer 5-8 sheets of paper on top of each other with traced image on top. Cut the holly leaf shape through all layers.
Make sure to include the cutout in the center of the pattern used to link each piece into a garland. I outlined my template to make it easy to see the edges when I traced around it.
Helpful Tip: If you have a Silhouette or Cricut digital cutting machine – make a cut file from the holly pattern printable.
To cut out notch, fold all the layers in half horizontally. Use small scissors to cut out notch. You can also do each one separately.
- Add Glitter
To add glitter, place cut leaves on a large piece of newspaper or cardboard.
Spray – spray glue over all leaves and sprinkle glitter over the leaves – shake off excess glitter. (To save excess glitter, fold newspaper and use it to funnel the excess glitter back into jar.)
- Fold The Leaves
Fold each leaf horizontally to give it dimension before locking them together into the garland.
The end knob on one leaf goes through the slot in the next.
- Attach the Leaves Together
The leaves are easily locked together as shown in the photo.
When hanging – cut the linking knobs off the piece of holly that is at the end on each side of the garland.
- Use Florist Wire To Make Greenery Sprigs
I went to my yard and clipped a few pieces from a cedar tree.
I used florist wire to make two bundles and then I wired the ornaments around the center.
- Hang on Cabinet or Mantel
For each corner where you attach the garland to a cabinet or mantel. See instructions below.
How to Hang the Glittered Paper Holly Christmas Garland
To hang the DIY garland, I laid 3 rows of holly leaves together and twisted florist wire in between the leaves where the garland dips and is covered with greenery.
I pushed the excess wire behind the cabinet door to secure. I used a few pieces of tape for extra holding power and hot glue to attach the greenery and ornaments to the paper.
Styling Options When Making the Paper Holly Garland
If you want to have your kids help make a garland, make it childlike and fun by using pom poms, pearls, buttons or red beads for the holly berries.
After the leaves are linked up, simply glue a red pom-pom to one end of each leaf.
Are you ready to change up your Christmas decorating with some new projects this year? This DIY project of paper holly leaves is a fresh and creative way to add some holiday style around your home.
More Christmas Decorating With Paper Craft Ideas You May Like
- Semi-Handmade Paper Christmas Ornaments
- How to Make Paper Snowflakes Into Ornaments Using Paper Doilies
- Christmas Tree Napkin Ring DIY
- Handmade Christmas Star Ornament With Surprise Inside
- A New Look For Old Christmas Ball Ornaments
- How to Make Paper Snowflakes Into a Window Decoration
- How to Make a Christmas Tree Paper Chain
- Printable Paper Banner Dinner Plate Place Card
I just LOVE the inspiration! The holly leaves garland looks so festive. I may try this using piano sheet music idea. The glitter is a pretty touch, similar to the look of sparkling sugar on cookies:)
Thanks for sharing these holiday ideas, never too soon to begin!
Diane, I love fresh greens but hate how they dry up so quickly! Your idea is perfect – I’ll be saving this for later for sure. Thanks for sharing at Vintage Charm! xo Kathleen
Thanks Kathleen – I enjoy seeing all the projects and ideas in the Vintage Charm link up.
Diane, it is so nice to meet you. I really like your site. The paper Christmas garland came out so beautiful. I like how you added some glitter for a little bit of sparkle. Come share at the Home Imagined Link party on Tuesday 9am-Thursday 5pm. Have a great weekend.-Meagan
Hi Meagan – Thank you. I will share the garland this week in your Home Imagined Link up.
This is such a pretty idea. I think I might try it with some Christmas sheet music PDF’s. Thanks
Thanks PJ – It will look beautiful done with Christmas sheet music. :-).
I adore the simplicity of this festive old-fashioned Christmas garland and how it sparkles!
Thanks Marie – I know glitter nowadays gets a bad rap for being bad for the environment, but I am with you. I love the look of a simple old-fashioned Christmas and like to see the sparkle. Seeing the glittered decorations brings back fond memories of Christmases past.
That is so pretty. I wonder if I could use the Christmas cards from previous years. I don’t like to throw them away but running out of room. This makes me want to try! Plus my cricut can do the cutting!
Thanks Nancy – Using Christmas cards would look amazing!! If you have a Cricut – so easy. I save them also. I like to make garlands with them. You can see how I make them in this post: https://bit.ly/3rNs5Om
First I love glitter, but no longer use it because it is terrible for the environment. Google glitter and the environment. Hopefully they will be able to come up with a substitute that does not contribute to any more degradation of the environment or does not disrupt human or animal hormones. Pretty project though.
Hi Charisse – I made the garland many years ago before we knew the impact of glitter. I do hope some company will soon come up with a better option for the environment.
Very creative and original garland but I don’t think I have the patience for a project like this. It is beautiful but not prepared to reinvent the wheel at such a busy time of the year.
I am trying to print script and template.I think I signed up
Thank you for that holly garland tutorial! I think I love you! Lol.
Oh my I love the holy french script garland what a cute way and to decorated beautifully Thank you
What a brilliant project – was looking for something to decorate the window of my Charity’s shop and this will fit the bill. Easy to make so I can everyone involved making it.
Thank you so much for sharing this!!
Thank you so very much for sharing your creative works!! Picked up some wonderful wrapping paper this morning. Making garland this afternoon. Excited!! Thanks again!
Thanks so much for the template and I have made some and really enjoyed every minute of it!
Thanks for your wiliness to share and not sell. I now have to figure our what and where to put them. A fun thing to have to worry about! Happy Holidays.
Oh thank you ever so much for the template and I just love the little cut out for locking the leaves together. Just brilliant.
In case you missed me….. grin….. My puter died and I was just given an old one that they had in storage for years (yippee for friends). It is an XP though and I might have problems again soon, but for now I am a happy camper. PC withdrawal is not fun y’all.
Hi Sheryll – Sorry to hear that your computer died, but happy that you now have a new one old one to get back online with. I hope it holds up for a long time. XO
This is so incredible Diane. Love this and will be making this. My head is already ripping on what I can use to make the holly leaves. Great tutorial and thanks so very much for print outs also. Glad to find this early so I can get started on the Christmas holiday projects. Every year hubs asks me why I’m making new things again and don’t I have enuf to decorate with? Silly man, it’s the holidays, I have to make things. makes me feel alive so much more to be creating and feel so much more in holiday spirits.
You said you’ll be traveling for holidays, how exciting and fun. Hppe wherever you go will be wonderful for you.
It’s been a long time since I was on your blog. I remember when you were getting your daughter’s room ready or her apartment when she started college. Somehow, sadly, I was off your email list so didn’t get your posts anymore. I always enjoyed your blog and how you write your posts. I’d love to sign up for email posts again. I’ve been on blog land long enuf now to value certain bloggers and have my very favorites and yours was one of them. Your daughter must be in her 3rd. year of college now? How is she doing?
Altho I certainly didn’t need Fall decorations I made some anyway. Been making burlap banners with stenciled images. Making use of my stencils finally that I’ve accumulated from all over country, they’re coming in handy for lots of projects. Nice that stenciling has come back into vogue, style again.
Have a wonderful weekend Diane. Happy Fall
I heart the Holly garland! Anything Holly for the Holly Days is good for me! Thanks for sharing Ü
Hi Holly – I can understand why holly is a good thing for you. A pretty name to have all year long, but extra special for the holiday season.
This garland is not only beautiful but a stroke of genius on how it links together! I may be trying this soon.
Thank you so much for this great idea! I have boxes and boxes of old music that belonged to my Dad. He was a wonderful piano player and I have been looking for a way to use the music since I cannot bear the thought of throwing it or giving it away. There are just too many memories in that music! I’m excited to make this garland using the sheet music. I may even make several to give to other family members who also cherish memories of Dad’s piano playing. Thanks again, Diane!
Another gorgeous idea Diane – love the little bit of bling too!
I am absolutely going to make this. So pretty and thank you for your instructions and print out.
Hi Diane! WHat a lovely garland! I’ll be making this for sure! LOVE the little sparkle too. Thanks so much for your detailed, great instructions! BEAUTIFUL! Pinning and featuring your on my facebook page!!!
Thanks Yvonne – Christmas is not Christmas without a little sparkle in the way of glitter, right? Thanks for sharing on your fb page. XO