Get into the seasonal spirit by trying your hand at making a budget-friendly, nature-inspired wreath
Whether you’re looking to carve out a mindful moment in the day for yourself, or for a fun activity to keep all the family entertained, and spend some quality time together, wreath-making can be a fantastic way to celebrate the holidays.
But getting crafty isn’t just a fun pastime; getting creative, regardless of what medium you explore, has been scientifically proven to reduce stress, boost your mood, and improve self-confidence. Plus, you have the added sense of achievement from creating something from scratch, which can be all the more meaningful, too.
When it comes to wreath-making in particular, you can put your own take on a traditional activity, and work to a budget by finding natural, free elements to include from your own garden, which can make it a great way to engage kids without breaking the bank over the holidays. But one key note is to always be responsible – ensure you pick items from your own garden, public spaces, or have permission if on private property – and take only what you need to avoid waste.
The good news is that, while most commonly associated with the Christmas period, wreaths can be a wonderful addition to brighten up your home throughout the year – changing colours and natural elements with the seasons. So, if you love taking your hand to wreath-making this winter, it can be something to look forward to again come spring – be-wreath me, it’ll be here before you know it!
. A wreath base
. Scissors or secateurs
. Decorative elements
. Ribbon, string, or florist wire
Make your own wreath
Before you get crafty, take a stroll outside to collect some seasonal treasures. This could be anything from pinecones to berry sprigs, acorns, leaves, or scraps of bark to decorate your wreath.
Depending on how much you find, or the look you want to go for, you could create a classic, full wreath, bursting with greenery, or you might want a more minimalist take and decorate just a portion of the wreath, leaving the twisted willow base on display.
Plus, if you’re struggling to find decorative elements out in nature, don’t worry. You could always hang some spare baubles instead of using pinecones, for a fun pop of colour.
To begin, you’ll need a wreath base – you can buy these pre-made from stores like Hobbycraft, which are usually created from wire or rattan, and cost less than £5. Alternatively, you could craft your own by repurposing materials from around your home, or twisting together willow or vines – anything that you can turn into a makeshift hoop to form the base of your design.
Take your choice of ribbon, string, or florist wire, and thread this through a section of the wreath to create a loop you can hang it up from. Wherever you create this loop will form the top of your design, so keep this in mind moving forwards.
A good first element is moss, which you can secure using more florist wire. This can help add some dimension as you layer other items on top, and can disguise the base of your wreath.
Scan over your collection of greenery from the outdoor scavenger hunt – this could include fir tree sprigs, ivy, holly, bay leaves, or rosemary, for example. Select a range of pieces that you can gather together in a small bunch to create more volume, and wrap more florist wire around it to secure. But remember to be careful to avoid pricks if you’re using holly – gloves might be helpful!
When you’re attaching these sprigs, follow the shape of the curve to create a fan effect as you go around the circle, with the edge of the greenery spraying away.
Continue doing this around the rest of the wreath, ensuring you overlap the elements to create fullness. You could try to mimic the first bunch as closely as possible if you prefer a more uniform look, or shake it up and choose pieces at random if you want something more natural looking.
Once you’re satisfied with the greenery, it’s time to add the decorative elements. For some of the more delicate pieces, you might be able to poke through the existing structure to secure, but for heavier items like pinecones, you’ll want to bring out your trusty florist wire again. One thing to note is to be careful of edible items such as berries, especially around kids and pets – we love curiosity, but only if it’s safe!
As well as elements from a woodland walk, you could include other seasonal favourites you can buy, such as cinnamon sticks; or bake orange slices to dry them out and use for a pop of colour, and a full sensory experience with that added scent.
For a finishing touch, add a bow with a ribbon in the colour of your choice! Now, it’s time to put it on display and enjoy the festive spirit.