Kissing Balls – A Christmas Decoration Easy to Make

You just need a few things to get at the craft store.

I never saw mistletoe growing parasitical around here, although there is an East American variety, Phoradendron serotinum. We make Kissing Balls out of Spruce, Holly, Boxwood, and any greens with a stiff enough stem to be poked into floral foam. Let’s proceed and get started with a basic Holly Kissing Ball. Once you have yours hanging over a doorway, the Christmas smooches will be coming. Save one for Santa too.

Nothing fancy here folks, but I get asked this question all the time. How do you make those? Actually, I make fancier and prettier Kissing Balls which sell almost as soon as I put them on display, but I will show you a good selling standard. So here goes…

First we start with some flower foam, the kind that soaks up water. Make sure not to get the kind for dried arrangements. You could soak them all day and they do not absorb. You want the kind pictured that sops up water like a baby’s diaper, where every last pore is filled. See the air bubble? It is still absorbing the water.

While the floral foam soaks, I start to put together the wire form and attach the ribbon from which the form hangs. The bow hangs at the bottom.

This is the form already to accept the greens, and in this case, I am using holly. The form hangs from a hook on the ceiling of the workspace, which, by the way is a huge garage. This is a decent workspace because making wreaths and Kissing Balls makes a big mess. Many of the greens bleed with sticky sap when cut and needles get all over the place.

I cut my holly into 6 inch pieces and strip the bottom leaves. The cut is angled to avoid damaging too much of the foam.

Now we just start adding holly until the entire form is covered.

Next I give the ball a spin….

I am easily amused you can see. Actually, you don’t send them flying, but spin it around to see where you need to fill in gaps. It also gauges that all the holly is securely affixed. Next I wire together the berries.

Following that, I assemble and wire the ornament onto a florist pick. I use regular package ribbon and fashion a single bow.

They are then poked into the foam.

All done. It is a really simple process, but very time-consuming. The really decorated ones I make take almost an hour to construct. There is a lot of cutting and stripping to be done, but I hope you get some ideas for making one yourself.

About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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