I don’t know about you but I’ve been eyeing these tall decorative leaves for a while. They pop up every now and then in cool Boho decor. It’s a refreshing alternative to Pampa grass, which isn’t great for dust or even an option those with allergies! I’ve been thinking about how to make palm tree leaves without weaving yarn, which would take forever on large leaves, and I came up with this method. DIY decorative palm leaves under 1 hour, no joke!
All you need is a bamboo stake from the garden center and some jute or any other natural fiber twine. Arm yourself with your glue gun and read on to find out how to make these tall palm tree leaves!
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To make these Palm Tree Leaves, you’ll need…
- Tall bamboo stakes (at least 5 feet – 150cm)
- Steel wire
- Jute string (I used both 3mm and 1mm thick jute)
- Glue gun
Step 1: Prepare the materials
To start off, cut a bunch of thin jute twine. The easiest and most time-efficient way to do this is to wrap the twine around a book. Make sure the book is at least 8″ (20cm) tall. Wrap the yarn around, then cut it on one side only to release it from the book. You should have a bundle of twine cuts, all the perfect size! Set it aside for later.
Next, cut a yard of steel wire. Wear protective eye goggles when you work with metal wire from a roll. It’s all too easy for the wire to spring around and poke you! Bend the wire in half and straighten it to remove any bends. Shape the metal in a curvy leaf-like shape and twist the ends together. My leaf structure was roughly 20 inches long (50cm).
Step 2: Assemble the Palm Tree Leaf
Now, lay down your bamboo stake and place your leaf on top of it, with the tip of the leaf touching the end of the stake. Heat up your glue gun and glue the tip of the leaf to the bamboo. Move down and glue the other end of the leaf to the stake. Keep holding the leaf until the glue has cooled down.
Next, prepare a length of thick jute and glue the end to the metal wire of the leaf. Start wrapping the jute around to cover the wire. I added a drop of hot glue every now and then to make sure the twine wouldn’t unravel – but I’m overly cautious so I’m not sure this is crucial…
Once you’ve wrapped the whole leaf with jute, bring the twine around the bamboo stake and wrap both the bamboo and the twisted metal wires to finish up the leaf neatly. When you’re done, glue the jute twine at the back of the stake.
Step 3: Fill the leaf shape with yarn
To fill the leaf, start by bringing back the small cuts of thin jute twine you stashed away earlier. Tie bits of jute around the center bamboo pole. It doesn’t have to be perfect, try to space them out evenly, around 1/4″ apart (5mm), but don’t worry too much about it!
When you’re done, turn the leaf over and add a few dots of hot glue along the bamboo stake, over the jute knots, to ensure they don’t slip around. Then, take a piece of twine and bring it under the side of the leaf. Wrap it around and add a little bit of glue to hold it in place. Move along the side, gluing the twine to the side of the leaf as evenly as you can. Try to make sure the tension remains the same so that the jute feels slightly taut.
I’d recommend you start doing this one by one but, after a while, you might feel comfortable gluing several pieces of jute at once.
That’s all! You may want to make a few of these because they look great in “bouquet style”. Why not experiment with different fibers and thicknesses? I created another leaf with thick jute and wider spacing. It worked up much quicker and I really liked the contrast between this crude leaf and the fine and delicate leaf made with thin jute!