Wrapping paper rolls- the swords of our childhood and the annoying long objects in our waste bins as adults. (or maybe still swords… I don’t judge!). As Christmas inches closer and closer, and money gets tighter and tighter, gigantic candy-canes are just what you didn’t know you needed! Not only are they super easy and affordable to D.I.Y., they’re adorable additions to your Christmas-scapes, office decorations or even outdoor ornaments (if you live in a place where snow and rain don’t plague you during the winter).
One of my favorite things about these little-big guys is the fact that, during the holidays, I have literally every item I need in my house to make them. I would be willing to bet that you do too! The items you will need to create your own candy-canes are:
-Cardboard wrapping paper, paper towel and/or toilet paper rolls
-Red and white wire-lined ribbon
*if you don’t have ribbon or the time to hit up your local craft store, you can always use wrapping paper, acrylic paint, markers or anything you have on hand to decorate the canes to your liking
*any kind of tape will do here; Duct, masking, Scotch, packing… Seriously, any kind.
To start, gather up your materials and get those rolls ready. Because I had them on hand, I used wrapping paper rolls, but seriously, any kind of cardboard rolls will work just as long as you can cut them with your scissors. Plus… RECYCLING!
Now that you have your rolls all gathered, it’s time to cut some rings from those babies! This doesn’t have to be technical or measured or clean or neat. I promised this would be an easy craft and to me, rulers or tape measures equal math, and math equals NOPE! Nope is not easy in my book.
As you can see I wrote 1-1 & 1/2 inches on the roll… I was wrong and I’m not ashamed to admit it. I honestly don’t even know if those hash marks are an inch or an inch-and-a-half apart and really, you want rings of all different heights. It makes forming the “hook” of your cane easier!
Snip snip, cut out those rings! You’ll need between four and eight for each cane depending on their size. I dedicated half of a wrapping paper roll to my rings, but if you find that you don’t have enough, (or too many) give it a few days… we all run out of TP at some point in the week!
Check out those awesome rings! As you can see, they’re all different heights! And for those of you wondering… I made these at work… My desk wasn’t cleaned for this tutorial because this is what my desk looks like at any given moment and if someone tells you theirs isn’t, they’re lying.
Ok… back to those candy-canes!
We have our rings and now the hardest part of the whole project… making those suckers malleable enough to bend into your “hook”. To do this, you’re going to take your trusty scissors and start cutting strips just about halfway up your rings. Go all around those babies until you have something that looks like….
This will probably take you some time, so put on a good holiday movie or click on this link (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_StgHl92v5Q) … Here you can watch my personal hero, Nick Offerman, drink scotch in front of a fireplace for ten uninterrupted hours. (It won’t take you this long to make your canes, but if you’re making a lot of them, Nick will keep you company for a good portion of your crafting time. Plus, he’s gorgeous!)
You’re going to take your roll and your rings and lay them out to get an idea of how your cane is going to look. Don’t worry about shoving your rings together, without tape, it’s nearly impossible to get them to stay. This just helps you allocate your rings and form that trademark “hook”!
Now it’s really time to start constructing!
Because I was at work, and it was the only tape available, I used plain old clear tape. (If you plan on using clear tape, you may want an extra roll or two of it handy, just to make sure you have enough). Slip that ring on your roll and get-to-taping
As you progress in your “hook” shaping and taping, you will want to make sure you align your rings so they gradually turn downward. This is where I found myself utilizing my tape supply. You really want to make sure those babies are taped down or you will find yourself “hook-less” when you go to wrap your canes. The finished product should look something like the picture below…
You can see how those little cuts in the rings were really worth the time. Notice all that tape too! After connecting the rings, I went back over them and added more tape. Once I had reinforced the “hook” I added EVEN MORE tape (Nick looks pretty impressed!).
After the time I spent cutting the rings, I wasn’t going to take any chances in those suckers falling apart. Reinforcing the “hook” will make your candy-canes last more than just one holiday season as well!
It took me about 15 minutes to construct the three canes below (not including the monotonous ring-cutting). I used two wrapping paper rolls, cut in half, and about half of the third roll that was used to make the rings.
Now, it’s time to wrap those babies up in your ribbon! This jumbo ribbon came from Michael’s and was a whopping 70% off with an in-store coupon. The single roll pictured below cost around $1.25. I used it to make six canes and still had some leftover!
To begin wrapping, I started just below the “hook”. I taped the end of the ribbon and wrapped, and wrapped, and wrapped some more until I reached the bottom of the candy-cane!
Now that the majority of your cane is wrapped, it’s time to move on to the “hook”. I found this was the most tricky part of the entire operation. Wrapping something flat and relatively straight on to something the complete opposite is difficult. Don’t get frustrated if it takes a couple of times to get it how you want it! You still have Nick and his cozy fire keeping you company, right?!
Just as you did with the other end, you’re going to “tuck in” that extra ribbon and, if you want, reinforce it with tape.
And that, my friends, is it!
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Author: Alek, aka Mrs. Pizza Arm
I’m a PNW girl from the top of my head straight down to the tips of my toes. I was born and raised and currently live in the gorgeous upper left with my railroading husband and our cat Dean. I am a full-time executive, part-time student, and find myself spending the majority of my free time in the beanery (aka kitchen) baking, sauteing, roasting, boiling, broiling and most importantly, EATING! I am honored to be a guest of Amber, The OG, and can’t wait to share more of myself, my recipes and my tips on life with all of you wonderful Broads!