With the Holidays approaching, consider making this years door wreath with fresh cut evergreens. You will get so much more satisfaction from your wreath knowing you made it, especially if you got to spend a day exploring and foraging. I personally have a ‘boughs and limbs’ permit for The El Dorado National Forest, but often you have trees in your very own yard worthy of a great wreath! You will want about an arms load of various greens for a typical 20” wreath but more if your going bigger or fuller. I love the combo of cedar, silver tip pine, and manzanita but also consider eucalyptus, olive, magnolia, or other evergreen trees which leaves won’t just wilt or drown after cutting. you will also need to pick up a wreath ring form, cutters, and paddle wire. 1) After foraging your greens, cut them into smaller pieces and sort them in piles for easy grabbing. Lay out any other embellishments too such as cinnamon sticks, flowers, pine cones, or what ever else you’d like to incorporate into the wreath.
2) Lay out your wreath ring on a table or counter near all your greens. I get my forms from craft stores or use grapevines to make special sized ones.
3) Attach the paddle wire to the wreath form by wrapping and twisting a few times until you’ve created a sturdy anchor point.
4) Choose a few pieces of each green and arrange into a fan shape. Even up the top edges, and don’t worry too much about the bottom length. My ideal size for the fan of greens is about the size of my hand. Go bigger or longer if desired.
5) Place and hold the bunch of greens on top of the anchor point with one hand and use the other hand to wrap the paddle wire around 3-5 times. The greens should still fan out (hand size) above the wrapped part with the stems sticking out of the bottom.
6) Repeat steps 4 & 5, except place the bunches a few inches lower on the wreath ring each time, covering the previous bunches stems. *Expert tip: angle each bunch slightly, alternating inwards, then outwards. This will make it wider and fuller.
7) Continue until you’ve reach the beginning again. Alternate the greens each time in anyway you like! Try to avoid patterns. Add in those embellishments as you see fit. You’re not done until your tucking bunches under the first bunch you tied on. Be sure not to tie down the pretty part of the first bunch while tying those last few bunches. I wedge my hand in between the layers and guide the wire under my hand so that the top layers remain free.
8) Finish your wreath by flipping your wreath over so the wreath ring form is exposed. Cut the paddle wire so you have 12 inches of extra wire. Wrap that wire around 1 of the rings a few times and end it with simple loop. Cut any excess off or just tuck it.
9) Add a bow or just leave it with out!
Made In Amador has lots of holiday wreath classes lined up this Fall! Check out www.madeinamador.com for a full schedule. We’ll also have greens, floral supplies and already made wreaths available at our shop at 14183 Old Route 49, Amador City. Open Thursday- Sundays, 10-5pm.