Dried Fruit Ornament, Wreaths and Swags

from week ending January 11, 1998

Design and Instructions by Diana Trupiano

This is a very simple and inexpensive project that anyone can make with just a few simple supplies.

If you don't have access to a food dehydrator, your regular oven works just fine. Simply lay out your fruit slices on a cookie sheet and place in a 150o oven. Check every 4 to 6 hours and remove when the desired effect has been achieved.

SUPPLIES:

Fruit - apples, red or green; oranges; grapefruits, lemons, limes

assorted dried flowers and foliage

silk or metallic ribbon

Alleene's Thick Designer Tacky Glue

misc. trims, pearls, beads, etc. of your choice

thin twine or ribbon for garland (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS:

Prepare fruit for drying: wash each piece and remove any stickers or labels, wipe dry.

Slice fruit approximately 3/8" thick. NOTE* The way you slice the fruit will determine your finished project design. Slicing apples vertically (stem to base) will give you fewer slices, but each slice will retain the apple shape. Slicing horizontally will reveal a star pattern at the center. This is highly desirable for stringing into a garland to hang on a mantle or door frame, etc.

Dry fruit as directed above. This can take from 10 to 24 hours depending on the method used, and humidity and climate of your location. OPTION** I prefer to seal each slice after drying with clear acrylic sealer. This makes the ornaments store better. For storage, wrap each ornament individually in acid free tissue before packing away.

The rest is up to you. Simply glue greens, dried flowers, ribbons, trims, etc. to either the center, top edge, or entire circumference of your fruit pieces. It's that easy. There are endless possibilities as to how many variations you can create!

For individual ornaments, make a loop of ribbon or other trim, and glue to the top back of each piece.

For a garland, start with a piece of twine or ribbon the length of your finished area plus 1 yard. String your fruit slices going through the front left side (about down from the top) across the back and out the right side. Tie a knot close to the front surface of the fruit slice on each side to secure. Continue with all the slices you want until you have the desired length, (the extra yard of string makes up for the loss in length from the knots tied to secure the fruit slices). Tie a small loop in each end for hanging, trim off excess twine or ribbon. Embellish with anything you please to give a casual, country or elegant look.

For a wreath, either glue slices to a cardboard shape (circle, heart, etc.), or trim and bend a coat hanger into desired shape and "thread" fruit slices onto wire. Apples work especially well for this. Dry apple slices until leathery. Tri fold slices and tread onto wire. This makes a "gathered lace effect" and looks wonderful with a ribbon loosely wrapped around the entire wreath, and tied in to a frilly bow at the top. These are very inexpensive to make and sell well at bazaars!

These items can be adapted for any Holiday, or occasion. Use your imagination to design a different ornament or wreath for every one!

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