This Easter is going to be a bit different. Lots of us will have to go without seeing our family and friends and partaking in our usual celebrations (my family tradition is to have a full Christmas dinner, because one a year just is, frankly, just not enough!!).
But don't worry, we can still make the day special. Most of us are at home with some time on our hands, so why not get a little creative and make your own Easter wreath? Brighten up your home and have some fun!
Firstly, gather up your ingredients and tools!
Here's what I used:
- Secateurs or strong scissors
- A mossed wreath base
I had a base left over from Christmas. If you've ordered a wreath from me previously; (here's why I always advice you keep the base!) simply pull out the old foliage, soak the moss base for a couple of minutes and then you're good to go! Otherwise, I'll show you how to make your own in a moment.
- Some foliage and flowers from the garden or foraged from the hedgerow (ask the landowner first!). Ideally, cut early in the morning or late at night when its coolest and leave in a bucket of cold water for a few hours to condition before using. This will keep them fresh for longer.
- Easter decorations (optional)
I used polystyrene eggs from Poundland which I painted and decoupaged. You could use real egg shells (more environmentally friendly too!), ribbons... anything you fancy!
- Kebab skewers or wire to secure decorations
Before we start, a quick note: Be careful when using sharp tools and wires! We don't need any accidents!
Step 1: The Wreath Base.
(If you have a pre-made base you can ignore this step.)
To make your own wreath base, you'll need:
- Some long bendy twigs (I used willow)
- A bucket or something circular to form the shape around
- Garden twine
Weave your long bendy twigs around each other to form a circle. Use some twine to help keep the first couple of twigs in place and the bucket to help form the circle shape. Keep adding in the twigs until its nice and sturdy. Leave the willow circle around the bucket over night for the shape to firm up (skipping this step is okay, but can lead to a slightly wonky wreath!).
Secure the garden twine to the willow base, leaving it attached to the reel. Start forming the moss into oblong sausage shapes, they need to be quite chunky and dense to hold the stems in place.
Once your first moss sausage is made, secure it to the base by wrapping the twine around it and in and out of the willow circlet. Keep pulling the twine tight! Make sure your next moss sausage is pushed up tightly to the first so there are no gaps. Keep going until you've covered the whole of the willow base. Then tie the twine back on itself to make everything secure.
If you get to this stage and think your moss isn't thick enough, don't worry! Simply go back and start another layer of moss pulling the twine tightly as before.
Step 2: The Woody Foliage
Cut down your woody foliage into pieces, leaving about 5 cm (2 inches) of clean stem to push into the moss wreath. Cutting the stems diagonally will make a pointy edge which is easier to spear into the moss.
I like to use one type of foliage at a time, this helps keep the design visually balanced. But there is really no right or wrong, just get creative and do what you feel!
Step 3: The Soft Stems
If you have any ingredients with a softer stem, such as Muscari, Tulips or Daffodils, use a kebab skewer or a twig cut into a spear to make a hole in the moss. Then you can simply guide the soft stem into the hole.
Step 4: The Decorations. (Optional)
Lastly, add in the decorations. Use a kebab skewer or twig cut down into 7.5 cm (3 inch) ish pieces to secure the polystyrene eggs. Add a little glue to keep the skewer in place and then spear the other side into the wreath. You could apply the same method to attaching real egg shells, using some hot glue to attach the skewer to the shell.
To add a ribbon; choose a pretty ribbon, raffia or hessian - or whatever you have to hand, and form it into a bow. Take a piece of florist wire (or any thin bendy wire) and thread the wire through the knot of the bow. Pull the wire through so that the bow is sitting in the centre of the wire. Then take the two ends and twist them together to make one. Trim the wire so that it's about 10 cm (4 inches) long and push straight into the wreath. Then arrange the ribbon so it falls nicely.
Et voila! You're all done! A pretty, homemade and biodegradable (except for the decorations) Easter wreath!
I'd love to see your own homemade wreaths - tag me on Instagram @emmajanedesigns!