Christmas Wreath Making-
For the past three years my first signal that Christmas is officially upon us is my Christmas door wreath-making workshop. It has become a little tradition just of my own to take myself off for 3-4 hours of sheer unadulterated joy that involves berries, foliage and my most favourite thing ever, ribbon!
I have always loved making floral displays, a passion inherited from my mother who was an amazing flower arranger. At Christmas she would always go to town and I remember helping her make massive swags of garlands to hang over our fireplace full of cinnamon sticks, berries and dried orange slices. The smell was amazing and I just loved the concept of bringing the outdoors in.
My main issue with making my wreath is it always ends up taking on a life of it’s own and I lose the middle so it becomes a floral explosion on the small front door of our cottage which our postman has to battle through to deliver our post everyday (how he must hate me every December).
Last year I decided to try the wreath-making workshop of Sally of Halo Blossom, an award-winning bridal flower designer. I do find it fascinating that in a workshop of seven people, with the same floral ingredients, everyone comes away with a totally different looking wreath that express their own, individual personality.
Half-way through creating mine I hated it, couldn’t get a sense of what I was trying to create and basically thought I’d ruined it. I didn’t have a clear vision of what I was trying to create. Then in a flash of inspiration I thought I’d try adding a ring of skimmia around the inside edging; the apple slices soon followed. I tried using big pheasant feathers but they looked too incongruous with the genteelness of the overall wreath BUT then I spotted the smaller feathers Sally had brought and I decided to make an external border with them – and suddenly VOILA! Suddenly it was starting to look like a wreath I’d want on my door! The hardest part for me is also knowing when to stop but luckily I did this time!
Above the initial layers of moss and snippets of Christmas tree, the foliage I chose were eucalyptus and baby eucalyptus and some small tufts of fern to add some wispy froth.
For plant detail I added in skimmia, which I have in my own garden and use a lot in flower arranging as it’s so versatile and always works in whatever arrangement I am creating. I couldn’t resist thistles because I love them and they are great at adding interest. Then slices of dried apple and the small pheasant feathers were the icing on this cake!
If you haven’t tried making your own wreath before then I would heartily recommend it. There are so many amazing florists around the country holding wonderful workshops and they are great at getting you feeling festive and that feeling of creativity at making something is at the same time relaxing and exhilarating. The ones I’ve been to are always been full of friendly people and whether you think you are creative or not, everyone can bring their own eye to a wreath to create something beautiful. There’s nothing like someone saying, “Ooh I love your wreath, where is it from?” and you can proudly say, ‘I made it!’.