November 12, 2014

Autumn Wreath

So, it happened again: Autumn is here. And much like last year or every year since I made autumn leaf prints in primary school, I am ooh-ing and aah-ing at the beautiful, colourful site that this season provides. I can hardly stop myself from picking up every leaf and conquer that was blown my way from the fresh October breeze. #Thethingisthough: I never ever do anything with it. I bring it inside, leave it somewhere on the dining table until it’s all dry and sad looking and then I throw it away. Don’t get me wrong I love a good craft session and have the fondest memory of my primary school years, but I am not sure if I want to decorate my house with the type of craft projects that I created as an eight-year-old (yet). However, I would love to cherish this season in our house. So I thought this year I tackle it the other way round and started the season with a list (hello fellow list-makers) of autumn-y decorations I would like to set up.

Carved Pumpkins
Pine cones and acorns in jars
Simple leaf bunting
Cozy knitted cushion

What started out as a desperate measure to keep the clutter out of our house, turned into the most fun autumn so far. Instead of picking up every acorn my pockets can carry, I am a cautions hunter of all the ingredients I need.

First up was the wreath. A couple of Sundays ago I armed myself with some garden scissors and wandered off into the woods to find suitable autumn treasures for it. I came home with a bag full of pine tree sprigs from a fallen tree, fresh pine cones and branches from a heather bush (ling or bell, I am never too sure).
With my autumn ingredients ready all I needed was some garden wire and a wire cutter. I am happy to share a quick break down on how I made my wreath. However, be warned: It was one of these learning by doing attempts as I have never done a wreath before. Surely there must be easier or more efficient ways but I skipped the tutorial search on Youtube and went straight into the making...

  1. For the base of the wreath I formed a ring of three layers of wire roughly the size I wanted. Then, to stabilize it, I wrapped it with more wire.
  2. Before assembling the wreath I outlined it, starting with the pine sprigs.
  3. Next I cut the sprigs into the right length and attached it to the base with more wire. Since this was only the first layer I didn’t care whether or not the wire was visible. However I did make sure that I placed one thick sprig across the top of my wreath to make it more stable and to ensure it wouldn’t collapse under the weight of the side sprigs when lifted.
  4. Once all the pine sprigs were attached I added the heather. I choose branches that had a lot of side twigs which would give me coverage for the wire.
  5. It took a bit of trial and error to align all the branches correctly: Since the base was only a wire circle the branches had to hold the round shape themselves.
  6. Any exposed wire at the end I covered with a pine cone. I simply wrapped a bit of wire around the base of the cone and twirled the ends together; giving the cone two wire legs. Then I nestled the cone into the wreath and twisted the wire ends around the base.
  7. Lastly I attached a bit of string right in the middle of the sprig that build the top of the wreath, hung it over our fireplace and said with a celebratory voice, “Welcome to our humble home, Autumn!”
Ok, maybe I didn’t say that but the wreath certainly brings a glorious autumn feel to our living room.
If you are in the mood for making your own autumn wreath now please don’t forget (disclaimer!) to be careful when foraging for autumn treasures. Make sure you do not destroy healthy plants or precious habitat (even of the smallest creatures) when picking or cutting anything in the wild.

Thanks for letting me share my latest autumn adventure.

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