DIY Farmhouse Wood Bead Garland

June 22, 2017

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

Today I'm going to talk about how I transformed an oversized, vintage wooden wall art rosary into a DIY Farmhouse Wood Bead Garland. Wood bead garlands are a popular farmhouse decor item that have been in vogue for a good while, and I've always wanted one for myself. 

"What's a wall art rosary?" you ask. Well, it's a rosary that's been super-sized, so much so that it can actually function as serious wall decor. "What's a farmhouse wood bead garland?" you ask. Well, stick with me and I'll show you how I managed to maintain the integrity of the rosary while updating it in such a way that it works for me, farmhouse-decor-loving-gal that I am. Today I'm going to share how I did it, along with some other projects from my awesome blogger friends as part of our monthly Thrift Store Decor Upcycle Challenge.

Thrift Store Decor Upcycle Challenge

The Rules:

  • Upcycle an item(s) from a thrift store, resale store, or garage sale into a new piece of decor.
  • There's no monthly theme.
  • There's no budget to stick to.

Meet the Hosts

Amanda | The Kolb Corner    Kim | Made in a Day Maureen | Red Cottage Chronicles    Pili | Sweet Things Debra | Shoppe No. 5    Jeanie | Create & Babble Kimm | Reinvented    Kathleen | Our Hopeful Home  Shirley | Intelligent Domestications    Angela | Simply Beautiful by Angela  Michelle | Our Crafty Mom  Michelle | Michelle James Designs    Kimberly | Farmhouse Made Molly | Just a Little Creativity    Lora | Craftivity Designs Colleen | Life on Kaydeross Creek   Toni | Small Home Soul 

Make sure you follow our board on Pinterest for more upcycled decor inspiration!

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

Having been raised Catholic as well as attending Catholic school for 12 years, it's no surprise that I'm a practicing Catholic. So I very much respect the sanctity of the rosary and what it represents.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

That's why I wanted to find a way to maintain its utilitarian function (as a rosary and wall art) but at the same time have it mesh seamlessly with my farmhouse aesthetic. As a vintage jewelry artist I'm used to using vintage religious medals and rosaries in my creations.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

Ironically, ever since I picked it up a few years ago -- I originally shared it and a little bit of its history with you in Thrill of the Hunt #24 -- I've never been partial to the dark wood. But seeing the beads in these photos makes me question that judgment somewhat!

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

But I'm still very sure of one thing. Even if I were going to hang them on the wall, I would be removing this rather large, superfluous cross. You can see in the photos above that I did indeed remove it. From my research it appears that it functioned as the "hanger" for the rosary. But I won't be hanging it so I removed the hanger cross.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

You can see here where I actually added a filigree antique brass connector in place of the hanger cross. (Being a jewelry artist comes in handy sometimes.)

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I knew all along that I wanted to paint it a white or cream color to mimic the color of all those farmhouse bead garlands I've seen on Pinterest. Plus white is just more my aesthetic anyway. And keep in mind that all my projects now and in the foreseeable future will be fashioned around an idea that I have in my head as to how I want my newly painted dining room and living room to look. It will be a clean slate and I will be able to go full-on farmhouse!

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I gave much thought as to how I would paint the beads. I mean, they're round, you know? How does one go about painting round beads? Should I use spray paint or regular paint? I came to the conclusion that spray paint would be a huge waste of paint. Then I remembered that I had some chalky textured paint (can you say farmhouse?) in a creamy color (Sheepskin) and so I went for it.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I basically just laid the beads down on some newspaper and used a brush to paint the top side, or one half of the beads. I let them dry, then went back and painted the bottom side, or other half. Ironically, all the while I was actually praying the rosary for a family friend who is very ill. This project was definitely therapeutic for me.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

Then I added a second coat. They came out looking more white than Sheepskin, but that's ok because we all know I have no aversion to white. None at all.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary crucifix

I even painted the chain (which you can see in the final "after" photos) in keeping with the vintage, shabby chic look. I also painted the crucifix and the brass connector, after which I physically removed them from the rosary. I saved those elements for later so I'll be able to display it all together as a rosary again once the mood strikes.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

And voila. Here's my 
DIY version of a Beaded Farmhouse Garland! 
I am over the moon happy with how it turned out!

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I love how my lavender plant looks inside the wire cloche.
I planted it in one of my DIY faux-aged terra cotta pots from last summer.  

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I'm also loving my lemon cypress tree and baby tears. Their pops of green are always a welcome addition to the otherwise neutral decor. And I think my DIY Farmhouse Lazy Susan makes a great foundation for the whole vignette.

DIY Farmhouse wood bead garland from oversized rosary

I even made my own tassel to hang on the end of it, just like the real thing! Who knows? Maybe you'll be seeing "Tassels 101" in a future post!

Do YOU have anything you can use to make your own garland? 

Until next time, I hope you enjoyed 
reading about my 
DIY Farmhouse Wood Bead Garland!

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Leave a Comment!

Debra said...

I love how you remade the rosary into an item that appeals to you more. I even like the crucifix painted white. And it was so meaningful for you to be thinking of your friend as you worked on this.

toni1965 said...

This turned out lovely and what a great update. I'm glad that you weren't afraid to paint it because it still retains the symbolism, even with the cross temporarily removed. My grandma had a huge one that had the stations of the cross carved into some of the rosary beads. It was mounted in a frame on green velvet. My mom has it now.

Unknown said...

What a gorgeous piece!!!

My thrift store addiction said...

Kathleen, this is beautiful! Love it!

Pili said...

I love those wooden garlands and your rosary transformation looks fantastic! I think I have to get some beads too, I'd love one

Michelle James said...

Beautiful update! Love that it has such meaning as well!

Craftivity Designs said...

What a neat idea to use a rosary to make a bead garland -- so smart! And even better that it is meaningful to you!

Shirley said...

Such a pretty color and I love your wire cloche too!

Michelle James said...

This is nice. I am in love with the new color and it looks great the way you have it displayed.

Emy said...

They turned out so pretty! And I love that they have meaning to you!

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