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How to Make the Perfect Holiday Garland

How to Make the Perfect Holiday Garland

At Schoolhouse, one of our favorite ways to get into the holiday spirit is by making a festive garland to string up around our home. There's nothing quite like the fresh scent of pine, cedar, and freshly dried citrus to welcome a new season of merriment and joy. In this blog, we asked our resident craft expert, Jorie, for her tips and tricks on how to create the perfect string of holiday garland. 


Cozy winter fireplace with colorful stockings and bushy garland on mantel.


Cedar Garland

 Person stringing together dried orange slices on coffee table.



  • Cedar
  • Wire
  • Clippers for wire and greenery



  1. First, you'll want to cut the greenery to your desired length before overlapping the cut lengths of cedar together. Then, simply wrap wire around the branches and add more cedar pieces as you go. Don't worry about cutting the wire! You can just wind around one big piece as you go.
  2. Once you're about two-thirds of the way to your desired length, start layering the cedar pieces facing the other direction to avoid creating a lone branch end of the garland. After you've filled in your garland with enough cedar, simply cut the wire and wrap the rest of it through the cedar to secure.
  3. Once the garland is hanging, we recommend taking another pass and adding extra clippings to fill it out and cover any bare spots. To give it some pizazz, you can also add in dried orange slices!
  4. Spritz garland with water every few days to keep it fresh.

 Person sitting on floor making cedar garland.

Person putting cedar garland on top of fireplace mantel.


Citrus Star Garland


Mandarin oranges on top of cutting board on table.



  • Citrus fruit with thin peels, like a nectarine or mandarin
  • Mini cookie cutters
  • Cutting board
  • Scissors
  • Twine or cording
  • Needle
  • Mallet (optional)



  1. First, peel your citrus fruit in one piece.
  2. Then, use mini cookie cutters to cut shapes out of the peel. Feel free to press them with your hand or use a mallet to push them through.
  3. Poke two small holes through the center of the shape before drying.
  4. Put your citrus peels in a food dehydrator or the oven at 175 degrees and check every half hour until they're dry.
  5. Thread your needle and use it to thread cording through the pre-poked holes in the peel, and viola!


Person cutting star shape out of mandarin skin.

Person stringing dried stars cut out from mandarin skin together on string.

Pine + Citrus Ring Garland


Pine needles and dried citrus on table with twine. 


  • Pine clippings
  • Dried citrus rings
  • Twine
  • Scissors



  1. Start by drying your orange rounds. Slice them as thin as possible and bake in the oven at 200 degrees for 2-4 hours, rotating every 30 minutes or so. Alternatively, feel free to put them in a food dehydrator.
  2. While the citrus is drying, prep your cedar tips by taking about 4-5 inch clippings off the ends of the branches.
  3. Measure the length of twine you need, and then add a few feet to account for the knots you'll be tying.
  4. Thread your needle with your string/twine and then attach your orange slices to it by going in through one side and back through the other. Slide orange slice down to the end of the twine.
  5. Next, make an open knot whatever distance you want from the orange slice. Then stick the pine tip through the opening and tighten.
  6. Repeat - alternating orange slices and pine until you get to the end of your length.

 Person making garland on coffee table in front of cozy fireplace.

Pine and dried citrus garland hanging on built-in cabinet in front of kitchen table.


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