Sunday, 27 November 2011
Like advent calendars, I'm bananas over wreaths. One of my favourite books is Martha Stewart's Great American Wreaths, which I can meander over for hours, drooling and dreaming.
As part of my quest to embrace and immerse myself in the Christmas crafting spirit this year, Ella and I have been busy creating a series of wreaths - which I'll showcase to you right here. The first was inspired by this little vintage book I've had for ages and ages . . . A Garland of Quiet Thoughts . . . falling apart at the seams and really ready for the junk pile.
But no - I love it so much, I chose to reincarnate its glorious pages in a wreath our family can treasure for many years to come.
I bought a wreath form from Spotlight and tried to measure the amount of pages I would need to cover it. Calculating roughly, I knew I'd come up a little short, so I added some pieces of red decorative paper, cut to the size of the book pages.
I used each page in its entirety for most of the wreath - until I got to the very end where I cut the pages in half crosswise and made shorter cones to glue around the very perimeter of the wreath form.
So here is how it's done . . .
You will need a form wreath form, decorative paper or book pages, a hot glue gun, a bowl of iced water for any burns (this wreath earned me a finger blister from a particularly bad burn) and some ribbon.
Attach the ribbon first by gluing it around the form. Lift the wreath to test its hang, and adjust the ribbon's anchor point accordingly.
Take each book page and curl it around to form a cone.
Staple the cone down low - you will need a small stapler for this.
Hot glue the cone to the form and hold it until it dries - about 20 seconds. Continue on with other cones, adding dabs of glue to the sides of the cones where they lean on each other. This will lend added support.
Continue on around the form, adding the cones and pressing them together gently, to eliminate gaps. As you reach the outer edges of the wreath, create much looser cones so that each features two leaf-like points (see below). Staple and glue on so they sit sticking out to the sides, framing your work beautifully.
Continue on until the form is packed tight. You should be left with about 3cm of space around the very outside of the wreath. Although this can't really be seen very easily once the wreath is hung, you might like to pack it with the half-page smaller cones to cover up the foam.
Et voilà - here is the finished product, gorgeously whimsical and a little bit vintage, looking almost Bohemian Venetian with those gorgeous muted colours.
Stay tuned for some more wreaths . . . tomorrow I'll feature a stunning white looped card wreath, and just wait til you see Ella's gorgeous wreath idea; it's my favourite yet.
looped white card wreath
tissue paper wreath
fringed paper wreath
hula hoop greenery wreath
gingerbread men wreath