Monday, December 16, 2013

Holiday Wreaths

This article got rejected because I didn't have a picture to slap up with it. Seriously, it should tell me if they want me to submit a photo with the article. *shakes fist*

It is a little over a week before Christmas and you are missing a wreath for the front door. Is this the time to panic? No! With a little ingenuity, creativity, and a bit of glue, you too can have that homemade holiday charm for pennies.

Styrofoam wreath forms are inexpensive and can form the basis for several truly spectacular wreaths. The first and simplest of options is to wrap green yarn around your wreath form until it is covered. Be sure to glue the ends securely at the back of your wreath form. Add a cheerful, bright red bow for the simplest and sweetest wreath on the block. For greater holiday cheer, you can affix colorful pompoms randomly over your green yarn to suggest holly berries and ornaments.

If you wish for a more complex wreath based on the styrofoam form, you can purchase fabric sprays of holly. Snip the wired ends approximately an inch away from the leaves and berries. Insert into the form at various intervals. If you are concerned about your leaves slipping out of where they are placed, secure them with a dab of glue after inserting. Once you have covered your form with holly leaves, affix your bow with florist wire, making sure that the wire is hidden by the holly leaves.

Instead of holly sprays, you can also cover your foam wreath form with small plastic ornaments. You can glue the ornaments to your form or you can wire them onto it with florist wire. It is important to make sure that your florist wire is securely fixed to your ornaments to prevent them from slipping off. You must use light ornaments for this project because heavier ones run the risk of falling off your wreath and potentially pulling your wreath off of your door.

If you do not have access to a styrofoam wreath form, you can use a grapevine wreath. These provide a more sturdy and durable option. With your glue, you can affix sprays of holly, sprigs of ivy, and miniature boughs of pine to your wreath. You can also cover your wreath form with bows. It is important to use a low temperature hot glue gun for this project because you do not want to melt your bows, if they are made from plastic or vinyl.

Grapevine wreaths can also be decorated with lengths of ribbon and wrapping paper cut into long, thin strips. Remember to fix your ribbon and wrapping paper securely at the back of your wreath. When wrapping your wreath, make sure that your overlap the edges of your material. If you wish to use raw fabric to wrap your wreath, the same technique is used. Before wrapping, pull a few threads off of the cut edges of your fabric to give it a fringed texture.

Children love the prospect of helping to decorate for the holidays. The simplest wreath that can be made after your green yarn one is a paper plate circle with hand print cutouts covering the edges. If you wish to put a message in the center of your paper plate wreath, you can do so with glitter glue to give a touch more holiday sparkle. Paper plate wreaths can also be made with sticky back bows if your child is not ready for cutting paper.

Older children will enjoy cutting toilet paper tubes into one inch lengths and painting them green. These are then glued together into a large circle. It is helpful to run a length of paper inside the collection of paper tubes to secure them together. If you wish to have the paper tubes arranged so that the centers are facing outward from the door, gluing them to a strip of paper and then securing the ends of the paper together is a way to make the process of creating the wreath easier. A benefit of making your wreath in this fashion is that you can place small items, such as bows or light ornaments, into the tubes for added sparkle.

A homemade holiday wreath can be budget friendly and easily made in an afternoon. Even the littlest person in the household can help decorate for the season with these options. A homemade wreath can also make a novel gift.

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