Autumn is, hands down, my favorite season of the year. Not least of all because of all the nature treasures you can find every time you step foot outside! Pine cones, acorns and beautiful leaves galore. It's hard for me not to come home with pockets full anytime I go for a walk. I love decorating with nature, if you visit my house, you'll find rocks, pine cones, acorns, feathers and twigs on every shelf, and this year, I found a fun and easy way to display some of the pretty leaves I've found in my neighborhood.
There are several ways you can preserve autumn leaves but since I already had some on hand, I used Mod Podge. It's really easy and quick to paint a coat on either side of each leaf, let them dry and voila, they are ready to hang or use in your fall fun crafts.
You'll want to choose the freshest leaves you can find, not to crunchy yet and avoid brown spots. For a half mandala similar to mine, try to find 3-6 of each different type of leaf in similar sizes and colors. It's a good idea to grab a few extras as well. Bring them home and press them between sheets of newspaper for a week or so before Mod Podge-ing, this will help keep them flat and lasting longer.
Once the leaves are all dry, pick a spot on the wall to create your mandala. (I made mine above the fireplace.) Grab some poster tack or double sided tape. Start with a large, nicely shaped leaf for the center. Add 3-4 more leaves evenly spaced around the edge of the first one. Use larger leaves first, and smaller ones as you go outwards. Designing your mandala is pretty freeform and intuitive, just do what feels best! Your work will be beautiful and unique.
I loved creating my Autumn display and I think the leaf mandala will be a new fall decorating tradition! (BTW, I made the pine cone garland as well, using this tutorial from A Beautiful Mess. :)
I hope you'll try this out and create an Autumn mandala of your own!