How to make swags and garlands for a wedding

Engaged couples with tight budgets can create do-it-yourself decorations for the wedding or the accompanying reception. Depending on your colour choices and your wedding theme, you might find that some craft materials suit your preferences better, but you can create your very own swags and garlands to hang from a ceiling, to embellish walls and archways, and to lay across tables.

Gather project supplies according to your preferences. Wrapping strands of white lights in coloured tulle netting or carefully arranged artificial ivy and floral pieces can provide a romantic ambience. Identify your colour palette and obtain materials accordingly.

Spread out your tulle fabric as you line the light strands along the tulle. Enclose the light strands by wrapping the tulle around them. Fasten a small yarn tie around every horizontal metre of these homemade swags. Plug light strands into one another when creating long swags to hang across the ceiling.

Insert the stems of your selected floral pieces into the craft foam. Trim the stems, as necessary, when building your garland, and position the pieces to hide the foam. If creating matching garlands, craft them at the same time to better ensure that the results will be identical.

Visualise the venue, mentally placing your swags and garlands according to your preferences. Determine what other decor elements you wish to implement and create additional flower, fabric and light embellishments as desired.


Plug in your light strands before wrapping them in tulle to ensure that they function properly.


When working with swags that need to be plugged in, pay close attention to the venue's outlet capabilities and keep extra extension cords on hand.

Things You'll Need

  • Tulle netting
  • White light strands
  • Yarn
  • Scissors
  • Artificial floral pieces like ivy, flowers and ribbon embellishments
  • Craft polystyrene foam
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About the Author

Elizabeth Valentine is an experienced freelance writer. She graduated with a bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University's Marriott School of Management and has also worked as a beauty advisor. She has published more than 250 pieces of content at sites such as Associated Content and eHow, having been working in the field of writing since 2007.