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How to Construct a Holiday Wreath

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Seeing a well constructed holiday wreath always puts me in a holiday mood.  It's a beautiful, easy to make decoration.  

Here is what you will need:

  • Pruning shears
  • Evergreen branches (fresh greens only)
  • wreath frame
  • 22 or 24 gauge florist wire
  • wire cutters
  • scissors
  • decorating materials for finishing the wreath

 

Constructing the Wreath

Any style of wreath frames can be used, you can even create your own out of a wire coat hanger. Most of the materials on the list can easily be found at craft stores.

To find evergreen branches, you can get them from your own landscape, purchase them from craft stores and garden centers, or you may find that many live tree farms will let you pick through their trimmings from their seasonal tree cutting.  The decorating material can be gathered from the outdoors or purchased from various retail shops or garden centers. Try to find strongly scented evergreens, especially if your wreath will be hung indoors.  The best scented trees are juniper, pine, and Chamaecyparis. Spruce, fir, and yew have much less fragrance. You can also make a wreath of various greens as long as the texture and colors don't clash.

I like to use a 15-inch-diameter wreath frame when making my holiday wreath.  It works well for my doors as well as an indoor wall hanging. I start my wreath by cutting my chosen greens into about 5" sections. Then I twist the end of the wire to the frame, being sure it is secure. I then take a small bunch of the cuttings and lay them on top of the frame, securing them by wrapping the wire at their base, 3 or 4 times, securing them to the wreath frame at the same time.  Take another small bunch and do the same but this time covering up the base of the previous bunch.  Continue to do this around the entire frame.  As you work, check to be sure that they are close enough together that the wreath looks full, but yet random enough that it looks natural. When you reach the last bundle of greens, tuck the base under the top of the first bunch you made and wire it on securely.

 

Decorating

Now that your wreath is done, decorate with cones, ribbon, bows, ornaments, twigs, or any other decoration you desire, by securely wiring them, one at a time, to the wreath frame.  To finish off your wreath, make a wire loop and securely attach it to the top of the wreath frame for hanging.  

 

Care

If you are planning on hanging a wreath indoors, remember that our heating systems will dry out your wreath fast. They remind fresh for about 7 to 10 days only.  After that they become dry and brittle and their bristles start to fall. They lose their fragrance as well. You can prolong their life by keeping it in a plastic bag in a cool location (a shed, garage or porch) and only removing it for special holiday celebrations. Outdoor wreaths will last from 2 to 4 weeks depending on the weather conditions in your area.

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