I’ve always loved the look of mudcloth and I thought it would be fun to show you how to make DIY Faux Mudcloth Wooden Bead Christmas Ornaments.
So, What Is Mudcloth?
I’m not an expert on the history of mudcloth style fabric, but an authentic mudcloth is basically a handwoven cloth that has been dyed with fermented mud. As fun as that may sound to try, and I may do it one day, I decided to make faux mudcloth instead.
The distinct designs are what draw my attention and I wanted to replicate them for some DIY mudcloth ornaments. Real mudcloth fabric is quite expensive so the faux version works for me.
Supplies for DIY Faux Mudcloth Wooden Bead Christmas Ornaments
- A drop cloth or some sort of neutral fabric – I use drop cloth for all kinds of crafts!
- Black craft paint
- A paintbrush set
- Wooden beads
- Embroidery hoops
- A hot glue gun
- A little creativity
How To Paint Faux Mudcloth Fabric
I searched the internet to look for inspiration for different styles of mudcloth. I tried not to overthink it and just started painting my design. I poured black paint into a dish and just dipped the brushes in the paint and dabbed it on the drop cloth.
Before you get started, be sure to iron your fabric first. I actually used my steamer on the ironing board and it worked great. Do you have a steamer? I haven’t used an iron in years. I seriously love mine. Ok, let’s focus!
The thin, wide brushes in the brush set worked great for making straight lines and the smaller brushes worked for creating dots or smaller patterns. Be sure to put something under your fabric because some paint may seep through.
This particular brush set I linked is exactly what I use in my craft room day in and day out. They are inexpensive but work great. They wash nicely and I hardly ever get a stray bristle. You don’t want stray bristles with this project. They would mess up your design.
Make sure to let the fabric dry completely before moving forward. I held my fabric in place and sped things along with a hairdryer. I’m impatient!
If you’re worried about keeping your pattern straight, you could use painter’s tape to tape off straight sections. I just went for it!
How to Make the Christmas Ornaments
For these DIY wooden bead Christmas ornaments with faux mudcloth, I used 4″ embroidery hoops with 15mm and 12mm split wood beads. The larger size was easier to handle but the set of beads I bought had both sizes so I decided to make one with the 15mm beads and one with 12mm.
Remove the inner hoop before hot gluing the beads onto the outer piece of the embroidery hoop. Otherwise, you may glue the two pieces of hoop together. Set the inner hoop aside.
Pay attention to where it might be acceptable to have a small gap between the beads because sometimes the beads don’t line up perfectly. You can add a ribbon or piece of greenery to hide the gap.
Start where a gap is acceptable and glue each bead all the way around in one direction. Don’t put one bead on one side then the other or you may end up with an additional gap. Does that make sense? Work in a circle starting at the possible gap.
Assembling The Wreath
Once all of the beads are glued on. Lay the inner hoop (with no beads) down and lay your piece of painted fabric on top (paint side up) with the pattern in the direction that you want it. Make sure your gap is where you want as well.
Loosen the screw on the embroidery hoop and press the beaded hoop over the top. Be careful not to pop off the beads.
Before you tighten the screw on the hoop, pull the fabric from the back to get things nice and tight. Tighten the screw and then trim the excess fabric off of the back. If you are planning to sell or gift these, you could finish the back with some felt or fabric. I left mine alone.
I just used black yarn that I had for a bow and as the hanger but grosgrain ribbon or jute twine would also be cute. Use your imagination here.
I’m already thinking of more projects to make with faux mudcloth. What should I make next?