Cranberries provide a lovely touch of red to your Christmas decorating scheme. One classic idea is using them in your garlands together with popcorn. Cranberry garlands give that simple country magic to any Christmas gathering. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make them.
- Microwavable popcorn
- heavy-duty thread
- Pour the cranberries into a colander, rinse quickly, and drain. Pick through the berries and take out any bad ones.
- Microwave the popcorn according to package directions.
- Thread the needle and pull until doubled, then secure with a simple knot.
- Thread one cranberry and push down to the end.
- Alternate each berry with three to four popcorns and push them all the way down to avoid tangles on the string.
If you want to try incorporating cranberries in your holiday decor, make sure to keep these in mind.
- Berries are no longer safe for consumption once you put them up for decoration.
- Put your berries in a bag and place them in the freezer. You will find that when you freeze cranberries, they become watery as they thaw out. The trick is to keep them in a well-ventilated area and away from direct sunlight.
- Preserve the berries by using a basic spray shellac or sealant. Shake the can and hold it about 12 inches away from the garland. As you spray briskly, keep the can moving in a swift and even motion over the entire area. Dry for 15 minutes and apply second coat to cover any missed spots or uneven layers.
- If you wish to use the garland again, store it in a large plastic container together with two to three silica gel packets to keep the moisture level low. With proper care, popcorn and cranberry garlands can last for years.
Other Decorating Ideas Using Cranberries
- For an attractive centerpiece, get some floating scented candles and a dish of water. Place the candles in the dish and let them float. Surround the candles with a handful of cranberries.
- Take several asymmetrical, transparent vases or glass cylinders and fill them halfway with cranberries. You can also place candles on top of the cranberries. This piece is ideal for table settings and the fireplace mantel.
- Hang a string of cranberries on your window treatments or front porches and embellish them with Christmas cards. Berries emit a pleasant fragrance that can last for several weeks.