How to make two simple Christmas wreaths

November 14, 2016

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple rosemary mimosa decoration tutorial

Image: Design Soda

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It’s two weeks til the start of advent and I have started thinking about how christmas is going to look in the home with more intent. I am also entirely ready for mince pies and advocaat (but that’s a whole different post). I tend to allow total freedom with Christmas decorations, no themes for me, just a smorgasbord of things I love with a little nod to the nostalgic and kitsch.

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christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple decorationImage: Design Soda

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We have a lovely willow wreath covered in birch stars from Cox & Cox that goes on our door each year but I want to bring some seasonal vibes into the white almost Scandi decor in our bedroom so I started to look around Pinterest at how our Nordic cousins dress their rooms for Christmas. I was really drawn to their style of super simple and lightweight wreaths which bring a lovely touch of greenery into the room. As these are destined for the bedroom I also wanted to bring in some wonderful natural fragrances. If you have half an hour and fancy doing something really relaxing that produces an item with the kind of visual joy that way outweighs the effort put in you have come to the right place. Pour yourself your favourite tipple, put your favourite festive tunes on, hell maybe even grab a mince pie or two, and follow these simple instructions to a homemade Christmas wreath with modern Scandinavian sensibilities.

 

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What you will need.

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You will need:

A ring for a wreath base, I came across this fabulous copper and wood scarf ring here but any ring base will do.

Some decent floristry scissors (I badly want some old fashioned metal ones like these)

Some string

Some floristry wire (like this) available from most garden centres and craft stores.

Flowers and foliage (see my notes below for what I chose and why)

 

Choice of foliage and flowers:

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple decoration flowers

Clockwise from top: white Veronica flowers, yellow baby’s breath, green and white parrot tulips, yellow Billy Button flowers.

Image: Design Soda

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christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple eucalyptus rosemary decoration foliage

Clockwise from top: eucalyptus, mimosa, rosemary.

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There are so many great flowers around at this time of year, I even managed to nab a few from the garden. As we are going Scandinavian in look you will most likely need to settle on delicate flowers with fairly understated tones. This means that the pink thistles (currently in the garden) survived my cull, as did proteas which I love to buy at this time of year for their exotic heraldry but both would overwhelm the delicacy of this look. I wanted flowers in white, yellow and green. I chose green & white parrot tulips, craspedia (also known as billy buttons or woollyheads), white Veronica’s and both white and yellow babys breath (which are great for adding delicacy), I have seen white roses look really effective on this style of wreath too if you fancy being, well, fancy! For the fragrant foliage I chose eucalyptus for one wreath and rosemary and mimosa branches from the garden for the other (of course if you are making this a few weeks later than me and have mimosa then you will have the added benefit of their beautiful yellow dotted blooms which are there in bud at the moment but not quite at full Pom Pom stage yet). I also grabbed some sedum leaves to bulk up some of the more delicate arrangements being inserted into the wreaths.

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple rosemary mimosa decoration detail

First layers of rosemary and mimosa wreath.

Image: Design Soda

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How to make:

You could be super organised and really plan your design out or you could go with the flow, layering and adding as you go along which creates a more natural relaxed effect that I really like.

For the white, yellow and green wreath I started with the rosemary, attaching sprigs with small cuttings of florists wire. I covered about two thirds of the ring and overlapped ends slightly to cover up joins.

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple decoration, parrot tulip flower bundle

Flower bundle arrangement for wreath example.

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I then started playing with the flowers bunching them together in arrangements. You can use string for this but as my flowers were quite delicate I decided that they would be held better and less invasively by entwining a small amount of floristry wire around the stems. Once you have made a couple of bunches up, start placing them around the wreath trying them at different angles before you attach them so that your wreath has asymmetric sprays to stop the design looking too formal.

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christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple rosemary mimosa decoration

First finished wreath

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Once these are in position you can start placing your mimosa (ferns or even delicate fir branches will work just as well if you don’t have mimosa). I placed the mimosa last because it is the largest and strongest element of the wreath. I worked on the logic that a little would go a long way and that I was likely to use less of it once other elements were in place, if you go too top heavy with this foliage your delicate flowers may get lost. I placed the mimosa on the wreath loosely from behind and wrapped the fronds over to the front securing them in place with wire.

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple eucalyptus decoration detail

Place flowers irregularly to give an asymmetric flourish to the design

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The Eucalyptus wreath is dead simple (one small note, if you have cats, keep them away, this is hard because cats are somewhat stupid investigators, but the essential oil in eucalyptus is toxic to cats so you don’t want them near it if you have it laid out on a surface). Start by arranging a few sprigs on the wreath (again adhearing to two thirds of the ring if you want a delicate wreath) and cut them to the proportions that look right on your wreath. Try to go for the bigger eucalyptus leaves for the base part as this will add good depth to your wreath. Then start arranging bundles of flowers as above, if you are using large-ish sprays of baby’s breath you will need to counter balance the delicacy with some thicker leaves, I used sedum as we have it in the garden but pretty well any vaguely robust leaf will do. Place your flower bundles at angles from the wreath where they will best be seen and give an irregular flourish from the base ring, attach with floristry wire. You now have the base of your wreath and it probably didn’t take very long to make (about 15 mins). For a final touch choose some of the smaller eucalyptus stems and cut from the main stem. Now place these stems over the wreath to create more slight irregularities (this is also great for covering flower bundle ties as eucalyptus bases don’t leave much room for cover up, though if your clever you can tuck a eucalyptus leaf over any joins).

 

christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple eucalyptus decoration

Finished eucalyptus wreath.

Image: Design Soda

 

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Eh voila, two super simple festive wreaths to decorate your home that look stunning and will also smell great for weeks. A fabulous use for left over eucalyptus leaves and bits of stem from the pieces you’ve cut is to put them in a hoover bag, trust me, your home will smell wonderful each time you vacuum – you’re welcome!

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christmas craft, how to make christmas wreath, scandinavian fragrant simple rosemary mimosa decoration detail

Finished rosemary wreath.

Image: Design Soda

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