St. Patrick's 15-Minute Moss Crown

As a total celtophile, I definitely love to celebrate Saint Patrick's Day. I don't care if it's an excuse to day-drink or kiss strangers because their t-shirts tell you to; to me, March 17th means whoopin' and hollerin' about how magical Ireland is. This year I'm living large and reuniting with some longtime Californian friends (now established New Yorkers) in Savannah, which is diehard Irish territory. (Organizers of the Savannah Saint Patrick's Day parade say that the 2012 celebration had well over a million participants. Yikes.) And to commemorate this jetset occasion, we're going all out with our Saint Patty's costumes. I created this moss crown to top off some perfectly lovely green cosplay wigs, but since it's made with, ahem, faux flowers it's durable enough to make some rounds on the festival circuit as well. Or just wear it without any excuse. Do you, boo.

This takes 15 minutes to slap together, it can be infinitely customized based on the blooms you choose and it instantly makes you feel like a flower child in the best way. Let's get to craftin'!

Materials:

  • 1 moss vine, found in the floral department of most craft stores; a facsimile can be found online here
  • 1 floral vine with small blossoms - if you can find shamrocks that aren't huge and covered with glitter or made of shiny plastic, you're miles ahead of me. 
  • gold coins; I found my leprechaun gold in a crafting store that's bursting with St Patty's merchandise, but you can always grab some from Amazon
  • E6000
  • spray adhesive and hairspray if you want to cut down on the moss shedding factor

Unravel the moss and wind it around your head once, measuring a comfortable fit. Before snipping off your section, allow an extra inch; after you snip, wind your ends together to create a mossy halo.

Using your E600, place your coins evenly over the moss circle and glue those suckers down. I placed mine on top, but you could also attach them to the sides.

Snip sections off your floral vine, securing the ends underneath the coins with more magical E600. It's entirely up to you how many sections of flowers to glue and how to place them; I'm into overkill so I used my entire branch.

And to frame all this, can I just say? I love Ireland. To an obsessive degree, probably. It represents a place of deep spiritual healing to me; the vast scale of the mountains of Connemara instantly give you perspective on just how tiny you (and your problems) really are. I've loved introducing my husband to the beauty and tranquility that surrounds the Irish landscape, and to the spirit of the Irish people; it's a mix of humor, guarded curiosity and limitless kindness once you break the ice. 

Back at home, Nate and I mourn each pint of watery American Guinness we sip, thinking of the pure gold that flows from Irish taps. The many, many taps. When we were younger and had fewer responsibilities (bridal gigs, coughcoughcough), we'd go every year - it takes me a minute to remember our number of visits. (5?) Westport, in County Mayo, has become a defacto family vacation spot; along its outskirts on Clew Bay rises Croagh Patrick (Saint Patrick's Mountain), where the saint supposedly fasted for 40 days back in the fifth century. (Legend says he drove the snakes from Ireland from its summit.) 

Celebrating Saint Patrick's Day brings me closer to that spot - and it's an awfully lovely spot, isn't it?

So voila! Done. Allow a few hours for your masterpiece to dry, then wear it to your heart's content. A word of warning: moss sheds. Not terribly, but it sheds. If you'd like to avoid that as much as possible, pretreat your moss circle with a coat of spray adhesive followed by a coat of hairspray a couple hours before you get down to decoratin'. Locks it into place pretty darn well. But hey. It's the wearin' o' the green. Consider any rogue moss as an extra festive touch. That's what I'm telling Nathan, anyway.

How do you celebrate Saint Patrick's Day? Tweet us @CampMakery and tell us all about your Irish traditions; I'll be there reading with glee! (And a twitpic or two of your own hairpiece would be awfully fun to admire, too. G'on, get to gluing!)