Making your own natural festive decorations, particularly wreaths, is a wonderful festive activity. Katie Smyth and Terri Chandler love to forage for seasonal materials and to incorporate bounty they have harvested and dried throughout the year into their wreaths. There’s a surprising amount of greenery even in winter, so keep your eyes peeled when on winter walks – just don’t gather plants from protected sites.
Look for ingredients that will keep their shape as they dry out, so your wreaths will last. You can also buy dried flowers, berries and seed heads from florist suppliers to add extra sparkle to your decorations. By using foraged ingredients and avoiding plastic waste, you can celebrate the season in a planet-friendly way – plus, many of the elements can be reused next year!
Many of us will want to create a wreath for our front door, and you can follow the steps below to do just that. But why not try making mini wreaths too, you can either use the leftovers from your main wreath to avoid the waste or just gather smaller materials. You can use your mini wreaths to hang from a door handle, as a decorative addition to gift wrap, as a tree decoration or to decorate your Christmas table.
You Will Need
- Grape vine, Thin piece for mini wreaths
- Roll of florist wire (0.35mm)
- Velvet cloth or ribbon
- Natural twine
- Conifer sprigs
- Asparagus Fern (Asparagus setaceus)
- Rosemary sprigs
- Chamomile, dried
- Hellebore flower stems
- Mix of foraged branches
- Hops, dried
- Honesty, dried
- Ornamental grasses, dried, Such as Briza media, Chasmanthium latifolium, miscanthus, meadow grass, Stipa gigantea
- Thyme, dried
- Scots pine
Bend the vine into a circle to work out the size you want, then cut to length; 1-1.5m makes a good size wreath for a door but for smaller wreaths shorten the length. Twist the vine around itself once or twice to give it a circle shape. Using a reel of wire, tie the vine together. Do not cut the wire, keep it on the reel.
Take a small bunch of your chosen materials and place them over the tied wire. Wrap the wire tightly around this bunch to secure it to the wreath base. Add another bunch, pointing in the same direction as the first bunch, covering the tied end of the first bunch. Secure in the same way.
Keep adding bunches of materials around your base until you are happy with how full your wreath is. Cut the wire off the reel and tie it off. For mini wreaths on table settings, you might like to use other material to create the smaller wreath shape, such as rosemary sprigs.
Add fresh flowers if you would like. To keep them fresher for longer, we used reusable floral water tubes. Fill the tubes with water and place your fresh flowers into them. Then either just poke the tubes in at an angle or use a little wire to secure them. You can change the flowers in these as often as you need to. This will work well for hanging mini wreaths, but not for ones being used on gifts or table settings.
Add other decorations such as festive baubles or fruits. You can use a glue gun to stick lightweight decorations onto your wreath or use wire to tie heavier items, like fruit, onto the wreath’s base.
Add the finishing touches, whether that be a ribbon bow, twine to tie it onto a gift, or a loop of ribbon to hang from your tree. And admire your creation! Feel free to add extra material or decoration elements, keep tweaking until you’re completely happy.
For more Christmas inspiration, have a look at these projects:
- How to make a table decoration for Christmas
- How to make a Christmas stair swag
- Four Christmas container displays
- Blue, gold and green Christmas wreath
- How to make a Christmas table centrepiece
- Make your own Christmas baubles
- How to make a hot-themed Christmas wreath
- How to make a cool-themed Christmas wreath