DIY: Evergreen Backdrop
Not only did this evergreen wall serve as a pretty backdrop for the food display, it also doubled as a fun photo booth later in the night. Find the DIY below and continue on at the bottom of the post for some ridiculous photo booth snaps.
- Evergreen scraps (lots of them!)
- Ribbon or twine (at least 10 yards)
- Hot glue
- Nail + Hammer (to hang)
Before you start, you’ll need to collect a lot of evergreen scraps. I found it easiest to just hit a group of Christmas tree lots to get scraps they had already cut that they were going to throw out. If you don’t live in NYC and have access to nature, you’ll have a much easier time getting these than I did. Perhaps you even have some evergreen branches you’ve been needing to trim in your backyard. Depending on how large you want your backdrop, that will determine the amount of greenery you’ll need.
Also, just wanted to note that I tried making this backdrop a few different ways – but with the weight of the greens I found it best to use hot glue and ribbon (instead of chicken wire or a mesh net). I considered using floral wire to wire each section to the ribbon, but the hot glue made the process much quicker.
Step #1: Once you’ve collected your greenery, you want to cut the branches into relatively even sections (I kept mine about 8″ long).
Step #2: Next you’re going to cut long pieces of ribbon. To figure out the necessary length, measure the width of your backdrop and add +1 foot – that’s how long you’ll will need each ribbon strand (leaving room to tie each end to the wall). The backdrop is essentially a layer of garlands; for each garland you will need 2 strands of ribbon. My backdrop required 10 garlands, so I cut 20 strands of ribbon. Get it? Got it. Good!
Step #3: To start your first garland, lay out 2 ribbon strands parallel to each other on a work surface. Add a 6-inch section of hot glue, and immediately place the ends of greenery to the glue. Then, add your second ribbon atop the glue and greenery to sandwich the greenery inside the two ribbons. Continue along your ribbon until you have 6 inches of ribbon left, then stop. Now you have your first garland. Continue Step #3 however many times necessary until you have all of your needed garlands.
Step #4: For the installation of the backdrop I used small nails and secured each end of ribbon to a nail and then also added a nail to the center of the garland to keep it secure. Begin hanging your garlands at the bottom, moving up along your wall. Let the ends of the garland cover the ribbon of the garland you secured prior.
Step #5: I sprinkled in a touch of some other varieties of evergreen to my backdrop once I was finished just to add a bit of dimension. To finish it off, I hung some fake garlands horizontally across the top to cover the ribbon from my top garland.
Step #6: Lastly, make sure your space is well lit, setup a camera and tripod, and start shooting!
And just so you all know, this backdrop takes a lot of time. It would’ve been a bit easier with some help, but since this was a project I decided to do last minute, I only had my two hands…both of which were covered in sap and hot glue burns by the end. Buuuut, it was worth it. This was my favorite backdrop I’ve made to date – I still have it hung up in my kitchen and I will definitely be sad to see it go.
Click “more…” to see the photo booth shots.