There’s nothing more iconic at Christmas than a wreath greeting you at the entrance to your home. Originally hung on doors to symbolise victory in Roman times, we’ve been donning them at Christmas for over 500 years.
Making your own wreath can add a really personal touch to your festive decorations. Whether you opt for a traditional style, or make a more alternative, statement piece, creating a wreath is a great festive activity to do with family or friends, or even solo. With that in mind, we’ve put together some directions so you can start crafting your own in time for the big day.
What you’ll need:
• A wreath base
When it comes to the base of your wreath, you’ve got plenty of different options. If you’re up to the challenge, you could make your own from a metal coat hanger, or from soaked branches (soaking them makes it easier to shape into a ring). Or if you’re short on time, you can buy a metal or foam wreath base online – though we’d always recommend metal of the two, for a more environmentally-friendly option.
The bread and butter of your wreath! Head out and about with some scissors or secateurs, and see what you can find. You might be surprised to know that we have plenty of native plants that work amazingly for wreaths, like White Cypress, Eucalyptus, Conifer Branches, Bay Laurel, Native Holly, and Banksia. The ideal foliage will last at least a few weeks after it’s cut – but dried foliage and flowers are also a great option, especially during the summer heat.
• Floristry scissors, pruning shears, or secateurs
• Wire cutters
• String, twine, or ribbons
This will be used to hang up your wreath, so will be on display. Make sure to pick something that matches the look you’re going for!
• Berries, seed pods, ribbons, small flowers…
You’ve got your festive base – now you need to make the wreath pop! We love using Hypericum berries to add a great splash of festive red, and pinecones are a Christmas classic. You’ll also find some beautiful native flowers that you can add to the mix, such as Kangaroo paw, Gum flowers and Paper Daisies.
Making your wreath
(1) Get your work area ready
It’s time to clear the decks! You’ll want a nice clean space before you get to work. Make sure your tools are to hand, and you’ve gathered all your festive flowers, berries, and foliage. Depending on what base you’ve chosen, you may also need an area to soak branches/ wreath bases. Pop a bin next to your wreath station so that you can easily sweep away your cuttings.
(2) Prepare the base
Now it’s onto the base. If you’ve bought it, it should be ready to go. If you’re creating your own, you’ll need to form it into a wreath shape. For a metal coat hanger, unwind it into a straight length, then shape it into a ring with your hands. If you’re making one from twigs, you’ll need to soak them to make them pliable enough to form them into the ring shape.
(3) Choose your style
Before you start crafting and arranging your wreath, take a minute to consider the style you’d like to go for. The full foliage look dotted with berries and other pops of red, is a festive favourite, making a tasteful addition to your décor. Tweak this look with other colours for an alternative take on the classic, or change things up completely and swap maximalist Christmas styling for minimalism. These sparser takes are all the rage, giving a contemporary twist to festive decorations. It works especially well if you’re using a twig base.
(4) Attach a loop to back of base
Ok, it’s time to get wreath-ing! Grab your string, twine, or ribbon, and create a loop. Attach it firmly to the back of the base, so that you can hang your wreath on the wall, or a door. We personally love using hessian twine for a more rustic look, or a beautiful silky ribbon in a complementary colour for a more glamorous wreath.
(5) Trim your foliage
Get your leaves together, trim them to a nice uniform length, and remove the lower branches. Before you get snip happy, cut a few test bunches to different sizes to see what fits your base best.
(6) Start filling your wreath!
Collect your foliage into bundles and start to attach it to the wreath base, securing it with wire or thread. You’ll want to overlap your bunches of foliage, and alternate between inward and outward facing directions, so that the full ring is completely covered.
(7) Add the extras!
Once you’ve got the foliage look you’re going for, it’s time to add the pops of excitement! Weave in your berries, seed pods, small flowers, pine cones, and whatever else you’ve foraged. Make sure they’re evenly dispersed throughout the wreath for consistency.
This is your chance to get fully creative! There are so many choices for different colours and shapes, which means no two wreaths are alike. Use natural tones, or jazz it up with some gold or silver tinted pieces for some extra festive feels.
Deck the… door
And there we have it! You should now have a beautiful handmade wreath to welcome your lovely festive guests through the door this holiday.
If you live in an apartment, or you’d rather jazz up the outside of your home in a different way, you could always put your new wreath pride of place inside your home. They look great on a mantelpiece, hung on the wall, as part of your table centrepieces, or even on the backs of chairs! And why not find some festive blooms to match? Browse our Christmas bouquets to add even more love and festivities to your Christmas décor this year.