Tuesday, August 9, 2011

summer reruns: faux fall foliage

Another one from the way-back blog machine, a post from Oct 2009:

I've had these cut branches from our back yard in my home for over a year. I've always enjoyed the stark shapes of the bare branches but often wondered what it would look like to embellish them somehow. I'm just getting around to it, so naturally I chose some fall foliage.

Ignore the ugly air conditioning vent. Porquoi, house builders?

I cut a bunch of simple leaf shapes from ochre, buff and yellow paper scraps I had on hand. I scored down the middle of each leaf and bent them slightly along the score to give them some dimension, light and shadow. Then I attempted to attach them to the branches. This did not go so well. The branches are brittle, dry, (and yes, dusty) from being indoors for a year. After some trial and error, I found that clear tape seemed to work the best.

At first I tried Fabritac and also thin foam pop dots. Both failures.

The Fabritac took a while to dry, so I had to hold each leaf in place until it got tacky enough to stay. With the number of leaves I needed, this was a time nightmare. Yes, I thought of my hot glue gun, but having been a multiple hot glue burn victim before and also envisioning the branches festooned with hardened threads of glue, I passed.

The pop dots worked like a charm at first. After about eight hours all the leaves fell off. Which is very appropriate for autumn, but not the look I was going for. So, on to clear tape.

I could be sure the leaf was on securely with the tape around the branch, but I don't like any visible shiny tape, so I made sure to angle all the leaves so that the backsides would not be seen from normal viewing height.

I really like the effect. It didn't take that long to do, once I figured out how to stick them on, and we can enjoy them until after Thanksgiving. I don't decorate for Christmas until December. It's a thing I have.


And here you are, magically back in 2011 again! Just as an update, those leaves are still on the tree branches. Two years later. And I still enjoy looking at them. So that clear tape is really a great solution. I'd like to get a fresh batch of branches and do it again in bright oranges this year. Maybe spray paint the branches white first. I think that would look great against my new blue walls!


  1. Still love this - it's been on my to do list for 2 years now. Boy, I've missed out on some fun blog stuff around here lately, huh? Guess I'll just have to buy my copy of Crafternoon from Amazon. The images you posted are very tempting!

  2. I did this same project back in 2008...must have been the thing...but now you've inspired me to take off the paper cherry blossoms and swap them for the leaves! I love that idea...I love to reuse what I already have!!! Thanks for the re-inspiration... here is the post from my blog a few years back... Have fun! http://michellesinkyfingers.blogspot.com/2008/04/bringing-spring-inside.html

  3. Robyn, where you been? ha. Yes, I can recommend the book. Because I'm so objective.

    Michelle, how pretty! love it.


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