Friday, November 27, 2009

Handcrafted Holiday ~ How to make a wreath out of fallen tree boughs

Mother Nature has chosen to grant us with lots of windy, rainy nights lately. Big storms have been the norm so far this season. In the middle of each tempest I thought about all the tree limbs I will have to pick up the next day, and tried to think about what I could do with them instead of just dumping them into the yard waste bin. The first craft that came to mind was a wreath!

You need:

  • 20lb fishing line (I recommend that everyone have some of this... for crafters, it really lasts forever and I use it all the time!)
  • Floral wire (or any wire you have lying around)
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Boughs off an evergreen tree
  • Decorations such as pine cones, holly branches, acorns, etc.
  • A wreath form (optional, I didn't use one for this wreath)
1. Gather your materials.

2. Take the largest branches and tie them together with the wire, tightening well with the pliers.

3. Form your wreath in to a circle by taking the larger branches and putting them together in a round. Make sure that each point where you are tying the branches together is secure so when you lift the wreath, the branch doesn't slip out of the wire.

4. Flip the wreath over to secure the rest of the smaller twigs to the basic form you have made with the larger branches. You can use wire for the larger ones, and then the fishing line for the smaller. Tuck the stray twigs in and tie as many as you can to the center tightly.

5. Add smaller branches to the wreath in the places where the wreath looks bare. Tie them securely to the main form. Tuck in any stray twigs and tie with the fishing line. I like my wreaths to be very lush and full looking, so I add many smaller branches at this stage to fill in the gaps.

6. Flip over and decorate by tying the natural items to the wreath with the fishing line.

7. If you wreath doesn't hang in a circle, you can put two cross supports of wire through the center of the wreath to keep it in form. (This is where I thought that the wreath form would have been a good idea, but it looks beautiful without the form, and this way, it was free!)




Silver Sisters said...

This is beautiful!
I've tried this a couple of times with different types of branches and always have trouble getting it round - I always end up with strange triangles and the like! Do you have any tips for making it rounded, other than buying a form?

Val in the Rose Garden said...

With this wreath, I had to keep tying different spots to make it hang round. There is a lot of wire on the back of this baby. It was a "tie, hold up, check, then tie some more" exercise. When I did finally hang it, the bottom started to sag so I put a cross support of wire through the middle. My plan is to hang something in the center... a wooden heart or something, to cover the wire. I like it the way it is, but honestly, I may buy a form next time. From what I can tell, you can use them over and over so I don't think it is a waste in money. And they are not spendy either.

I think Fir boughs make the best wreaths that I have seen. They are easy to work with (esp if they have been outside in a storm all night long) and they already have natural decoration in the fir cones. :)

The holly is from the other side of our yard and I thought it a great addition. I am trying to think up other things to do with it too.



Shirley said...

beautiful wreath!

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