Every crafter at one time or another thinks about or contemplates entering a craft fair.
Several years ago, I chose to take the plunge and entered a local craft fair. It was my first attempt, and as of late, my last attempt.
I sold Eucalyptus Topiaries… and by pure luck, I did sell most of them that day. But, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention my good friend was my best customer.
I recently saw one in a local home store, and it was quite expensive. It inspired me to make one, and I was also looking for a tall piece to go on my entryway table.
Making The Eucalyptus Topiary
The investment of making the topiary is in the florals especially if you use dried or preserved florals. But, his topiary can be made with a variety of different florals to adjust to a budget.
Many of the other materials you may have on hand.
I used a vase I already had and a 5 inch round styrofoam ball. I cut the dowel to 14 inches.
The ribbon to match your decor is optional…
- Styrofoam ball – 3 to 5 inch depending on the size topiary
- Styrofoam form – Check Hobby Lobby for 40% off and single form
- Wooden dowel
- Dried Eucalyptus Branches
- Other decorative branch forms
- Brown Craft Paint
- Ribbon (optional)
- Floral cutters or an old pair of scissors to cut the Eucalyptus
- Glue gun
The topiary I made with a 5-inch ball made a large topiary. It stands over two feet tall. I would start with a smaller 3-inch ball, which will work nicely with a small to average size vase. It is also the vase size that will dictate the size of the topiary.
For example, a large vase would require a larger ball form and vise versa. The dowel’s length must also be considered when deciding on your design because a short dowel with a large ball would look out of proportion.
I used two bunches of dried Eucalyptus branches from Hobby Lobby on sale for fifty percent off. A 3-inch ball should only take one large bundle
The first step is to place the styrofoam form into your vase. Make sure it fits tightly and I also packed the open edges with paper for a snug fit.
Hot glue will not work for adhering the styrofoam to the vase, so a perfect fit is important. To take it a step further, if you were planning on selling your topiaries, I would recommend using a crafting plaster to set the dowel in place instead of styrofoam, but for this purpose, a snug fit will do the trick.
Next… I cut the dowel with a small hand saw because my dowel was about 1/2 inch in diameter for the size ball I was using. Next, paint the dowel with brown craft paint. You could also use a branch from your yard as long as it was somewhat straight and sturdy.
Once the dowel is dry, place a dab of glue on the end and place it in the middle of the styrofoam form and do the same by adding the styrofoam ball to the top of the dowel….making sure it looks straight.
This is the main structure of the topiary. Once in place, I then added decorative squiggly branches. This part can be optional, but it makes the topiary more realistic by distracting the wooden dowel.
There is no right or wrong way to do this… I love the free form the branches give the topiary.
Next, cut the Eucalyptus branches; depending on the branch’s length, it can usually be cut into thirds. I like a long free-form look, so my branches are on the longer side. Just start sticking the ends of the branch into the ball
I like the longer branches toward the top cutting them smaller toward the bottom.
Remove a few of the small leaves, so the stem is clean when it goes into the ball…an inch is usually good. When the stem is inserted, the bottom leaves will fan out, covering the ball, making it easy to hide.
To make sure the branch has adhered properly, a dab of hot glue on the end of the branch will secure the branch into the ball.
Brown or green moss can be added to cover the mechanics, depending on your decor. I also added a ribbon, but it is purely for decoration…
This will be the final resting place, on the entryway table.
Give a topiary a try and put your own spin on the design…have fun!
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