DIY Day of the Dead Wreath

Halloween is still yet a month away, but it's almost time to start thinking of decorating our home for the Halloween holiday. Instead of the usual witches and ghosts, I thought I would take some inspiration from our friends in Mexico and do a Day of the Dead themed decor.
For those that are unaware of the Day of the Dead celebration in Mexico, it is basically a day that celebrates the previous lives of the dead. Graves of loved ones are decorated with flowers, ornate candy skulls and candles. It's really quite beautiful and people pour their hearts and souls into the memory of their loved ones. You can read more about the tradition here.

Today I will teach you how to make your own Day of the Dead Wreath. Even better, all items for this wreath can be found at the dollar store.

Supplies you will need:
Glue gun and glue
Foam ring -found in the floral department
black crepe paper streamers
plastic skeletons
white paint
paint brushes
assorted flowers

Begin by adding some hot glue to the back of your wreath form. Them start wrapping your crepe paper around your wreath.

I added a dot of glue every so often to help keep the crepe paper in place.  I wrapped the wreath a total of two times. Make sure to stretch the crepe paper slightly to get a tighter fit.

Finish the wrapping of the wreath with a small amount of glue on the back of the wreath.

This is what the wrapped wreath will look like.

Next, we will begin work on the sugar skeletons.

You want to cut the head of the skeleton from it's body and leave enough of a stem so that you can easily press the skeleton head into your wreath.

Paint your skeleton heads white. Bonus if you find already white skeleton heads since you may be able to skip this step.
I used acrylic white paint. For an even stronger bond, I would suggest using white paint especially designed for painting plastic.

When the white paint has fully dried, apply your surface design. See the end of this post for sugar skull painting inspiration.
I again used acrylic paint and a little pen and ink.
Let your skulls dry completely. While we wait, we can start on adding a hanging ribbon to our wreath.

Here I added the hanging ribbon for my wreath. This is not a dollar store ribbon, I used what I had handy, but the dollar store does have some ribbon available.
I start by wrapping the ribbon around the top of the wreath and then making a large loop at the top. Tie a knot around your loop.

This is what your wreath should look like. I next added a bow to the top of the wreath by tying it around the knot I just made in the picture above.

Now it's time to position our skulls. I begun by finding the center of my wreath and placing one skull in the center.
I found the easiest way to place your skulls on your wreath was to make a hole with your scissors or the back point of a paint brush and press it into the position you want your skull on the wreath.
Add a little hot glue to the stem of your skull and press into the hole you just made in your wreath. Do this with all three of your skulls.
Next, I laid my silk flowers out loosely on my wreath to get an idea of how I would like them arranged.
The silk flowers I used were also from what I had on hand, but they sell silk flowers at the dollar store as well.  Look for bright colors. Reds, yellows, pinks and oranges look great.
Now that I know how I would like my flowers arranged, it's time to place my flowers on my wreath.
Here I used the back tip of a paintbrush to make a hole to place my flowers.
Make sure that the ends of your flowers are relatively short. You don't want extra stem piercing through the back of your wreath.
Add a little hot glue to the stem of the silk flower and stick the flower in your wreath. Do this will all of your silk flowers.

And here is the completed Day of the Dead wreath.

Here are some Day of the Dead inspirations to help you in creating your own wreath.


  1. Great idea - very effective
    (FYI it's crepe paper, not cray)

  2. You are correct. It is crepe paper. Thank you.


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