A wreath on your front door represents that warmth and cheer are just a knock away. Anyone can purchase a wreath for the holiday, but other than that ready-made red bow, what real interest does it have? Holiday wreaths have come a long way and many garden centers and nurseries have beautifully decorated wreaths that are ready to hang and enjoy, but be prepared to spend some money on these for the convenience.
Over the years, I have experimented in wreath making that has led to many compliments and group fun and enjoyment when we make a party out of decorating our wreaths. I purchase a plain inexpensive 19-inch wreath for less than $19.00. I then transform it to a masterpiece. Using many items from my garden I can add and build to create layers of interest. Lavender, holly, magnolia leaves, pinecones, nuts, bayberry, colorful leaves and branches, small metallic round ornaments in gold, silver, red or copper, dried grasses, Spanish moss and other evergreens that don’t appear in the original wreath--all will add to the overall look and texture. Each year you will look forward to creating your wreath and to receiving the compliments that will follow.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
A standard evergreen wreath:
Unless you would like to pay double to buy from the nurseries, go to your local Home Depot, Trader Joe's, or an outdoor discount nursery for the best prices. Wreaths that have been stored outside stay fresher and greener longer.
Evergreen clippings from the garden or garden center:
If you do not have any evergreen clippings to choose from in your garden, all nurseries have a wide array of them for the holidays. My special touch this year was to add Cabaret Japanese silver grass cuttings. I knew I had a reason for saving those late fall dry grass flower arrangements in my garden studio!
Spool wire and all additional decorations:
Here is how you will add to your wreath. Wire each item in small bundles if necessary and then weave the wire into the evergreen base and attach to the main wreath frame. Branches, leaves, lavender, and other organic elements should have their lower stems hidden in the evergreen base.
Two-inch wide cotton ribbon:
This is another personal touch. Find interesting ribbon that creates contrast to the wreath. Wire-edged ribbon is excellent because it can mold to your whimsical design. When creating a ribbon bow, tie in multiple layers for a bold punch.
Glue, glitter and spray paint:
I usually don’t use glue in making a wreath, but for the advanced arts and crafts folks among you, a little glue can offer original and unusual decorative ideas. For example, brush some glue onto your pinecones and dip in glitter. Spray paint can be used on pinecones, nuts, leaves, and boxwood sprigs. Be careful not to go crazy glittering and spraying. Understated elegance with a hint of sparkle will look great, but your own taste and identity should shine through your wreath. Over the years, I have spray painted boxwood, holly and dried hydrangeas in red, gold, silver and copper to accent ribbons and other adornments. This is an excellent way to make a bold statement and customize a look.
Recycling older adornments: They will be transformed with a simple spray. Applying glue lightly to old wreath decorations with a sprinkle of glitter transforms any old ornament into a new accent. I continue the color scheme in my tree and other holiday vignettes that I create in my home.
Get ready to make your wrreath extra-special! This is a wonderful project that’s fun for a small gathering or cocktail party prior to the holidays. Whatever you choose, always encourage yourself to create and have fun. Each year you will learn what you like and what works best for your home. You’ll never look at a wreath the same way again.
And there you have it.