11.24.2009

Craft Project: Natural Wreath

Fall Craft Project : Autumn Wreath

I was in love with the beautiful natural wreaths for sale at Terrain. Aren't they amazing? Unfortunately, they are quite pricey, especially if you are trying to pinch pennies like me. Lately, I remind myself of a sad hobo cartoon - I like to ogle pretty things for sale and stand there with a dazed expression on my face, with my pockets empty and turned inside-out. But then I got wise and realized I could make one myself! (Remember when I was gathering up all those flowers?) Everything I needed to make a pretty autumn wreath was outside in the yard, the neighbor's yard (shh, secret) or growing on the side of the road.

autumn wreath

Using a $4 grapevine wreath form, craft wire and found natural materials, I made this wreath to spruce up my door for this week's Thanksgiving festivities. I used wild sumac (not the poison kind, don't worry), wild flowers, crab apples and corn husks.

How To:

Materials:
  • 1 grape vine wreath form, about 12 or 14" in diameter
  • craft wire or florist's wire
  • scissors
  • Natural/found materials (My favorites to look for are wild sumac, dried wildflowers, crab apples, corn husks, pine cones, straw flowers, magnolia leaves, lavender, poppy pods, or wheat.) If you'd like to dry and preserve our own flowers, simply gather like flowers and bundle them together with string or twine. Hang them upside down in a dark place for a few days. Some of the flowers' colors may diminish slightly, but after a coat of spray sealant, they should hold up for years if stored properly.



1. First, decide on a neutral colored base material. I used corn husks cut into leaf shapes (There are no corn fields near me, so I opted for the grocery store variety, left over from my vegetarian tamales. You can find these in the ethnic food aisle.) Other good options would be strands of wheat, preserved leaves, evergreens or millet.



2. Gather a few pieces of your base material and bind them together at one end with a 5" piece of craft wire. Wrap the wire around your little bouquet a couple of times, very tightly so it stays nice and secure. Leave a couple of inches of wire on each end to help secure it to the wreath form.



3. Now do the same with your accent materials. You will probably need 40-50 sprigs of your base material and 20-25 springs of accent materials.

4. Once you have all of your materials gathered and wired into bouquets, begin securing them to your wreath form. Thread the wire ends on your bouquets through the vines, wrapping them tightly, making sure they are secure. Work one section at a time, first adding a few sprigs of your base, and then working in little pops of color. Clip all of the loose wires and arrange your materials so that they overlap to disguise the tiny coils and knots of craft wire.

autumn wreath

Ta-daaah! Do you like it? I think it really cheers up my doorstep.

9 comments:

  1. oooh johanna, i LOOOVE it!!!! come over and make me one!

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  2. that is BEAUTIFUL! you are so clever/talented!

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  3. Pretty! I love wreaths. I only ever do a Christmas one, but I want to branch out. I love Spring wreaths, too.

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  4. WOW! I just found your wreath on Michele's Wreath Blog and I just HAD to pop over and tell you that this is one of the most beautiful wreaths i have seen!

    You have inspired me to try using what I have on hand in my own garden or what I can gather at the farm and create one to replace my rather unexciting wreath from 2011!!

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