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Oh My Stars!
Canning Day Quilt

Old New Merry Christmas Garland

Yesterday I picked up this wonderful Merry Christmas garland from my mom.  It looks like something that might have been just made yesterday….

But it wasn’t.  It was made in the early 1960′s by my grandmother and sister, my great aunt Lola, who made 10 or more of them for their sisters and sister-in-laws.

The lettering is stitched to a length of grosgrain ribbon.

The sequins are awesome.  Where in the world do you get reindeer, star and Christmas tree sequins I ask you?  I love the combination of colors and shapes.  On this garland, each sequin is sewn into place with a tiny glass bead.

Aunt Lola’s says that after sewing and sewing sequins they got T-I-R-E-D of sewing sequins…. so they started gluing them into place.  I guess that’s what happens when you have so many sisters.  Some of the sisters received glued garlands.

I just had to include this picture of my grandmother and her sisters.  Aren’t they lovely?  For years they all made handmade gifts for each other each Christmas.  My grandmother is right in the center and Aunt Lola is the 1st on the left. Aunt Lola was a real live Rosie the Riveter in California during WWII… so she could sew sequins and build a bomber plane cockpit.

I will be making my own garland this weekend… since this one is on loan from my Uncle Tyler.  Thanks Ty!  I’ll have it back to you safe and sound before you decorate for Christmas.

Now all I need to do is to find pinking shears.  They have been on my wish list forever!  I could love to buy scalloped shears… but I may have to settle for pinking since I have a bee in my bonnet to get this project done.

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20 Responses to “Old New Merry Christmas Garland”

  • Kelly:

    That picture is priceless! I have 5 girlies and think I’ll take a picture like that with them all lined up.
    Thanks for the inspiration:)

  • Tina:

    I have seen those very same reindeer, trees and star assortment somewhere. It was packaged like confetti all mixed up. It would be nice if you could find it. Good luck on your project. I have a pair of pinking shears I never use you could borrow!!

    • Calli:

      Ooh! I wish you were my neighbor! Don’t you think pinking shears should be shared with a friend, since we hardly ever need them. I was just looking at them and they aren’t too cheap. I’m hoping JoAnn’s takes a coupon for them.

  • What a beautiful picture of all the sisters! Love it! And the garland, might have to try that! :)

  • CarrieBeth:

    How totally awesome is this banner!! I am so inspired. Wouldn’t a Happy Birthday banner be cool . . . .

  • What a fun garland for Christmas!

  • Alexa:

    I have those sequins on a Christmas stocking my mother knit for me in the 70′s. It’s got a fuzzy cuff and Santa beard and my name knit into it. Things like that are great reminders when their makers are gone.

  • What a special garland, Calli! Isn’t it fun to see all the attention to detail they put into crafts?!

    I’m excited to see the one you make!

  • Anna:

    What a great find! Really lovely!
    Have a great weekend,

  • Jen LC:

    That banner is amazing, and inspiring too! Can’t wait to see how yours turns out! :)

    OH and definitely spring for the pinking shears over decorative scissors…you’ll love the heft and strength AND, if you’re like me, you’ll find yourself pinking everything.

  • heidi s.:

    Love this! My aunt made similar stockings for each of us grandkids back in the late 70′s/early 80′s. They had the same sequins and each was sewn on with the little glass beads. Made out of white felt, and she even used pinking shears. Great memories. Amazing lady too, as there were about a million of us kids! Can’t imagine making that many…whew!

  • LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea and am inspired to make my own!! I love the vinatge look this has as well as the story. This is something that can be passed down for generations! I would love to try this for Halloween and make a birthday one too.

  • Marit:

    I love this garland! I’m excited that you are willing to share– it’s just what I’ve been looking for. And that photo of your grandmother and her sisters is precious. Thanks!

  • Becky:

    My Grandmother made the same type of craft during the 50s/60s for her family. She made stockings out of felt for the four family members and the dog and all had the same sequin/bead combo decoration. It must have been the Cricut of its day.

  • Tiscia (Porter):

    Oh my goodness! It’s the last day of Christmas break, and my two little ones are still asleep, so I decide to start pinning some of my bookmarks into pintrest. I had your blog pinned and I open it up to a familiar Christmas Garland!

    I am one of Nyda’s Grandaughters, and I know that Garland all to well! How crazy! What a fun surprise this morning. I’m going to have to pay closer attention to your blog, and look over some of your stories of our family. :)

    Tiscia (Nyda, Perry)

  • Emily:

    Thank yo for sharing! I have searched high and low and found a site and ordered them today:)!! http://www.ccartwright.com/index.html

  • Carrie M:

    I’m not very crafty but I’d LOVE to make this. How long is the ribbon stretched from end to end? How tall is each letter?


  • Alejandra:

    hi! I just loved your garland and its beautiful story, so, I am ready to make a some, for my kids and nieces and nephews but i am wondering the same thing as Carrie M.: How long is the ribbon from start to end and how tall and wide are the letters. Being Mexican I had never seen such a garland! Thanks for sharing!!!!

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