Thursday, March 23, 2017

Tips on Creating a Woodland Wreath

Happy Spring, Friends!  The weather in Nebraska is in its usual roller-coaster mode for March.  But snow has given way to rain, and the birds are becoming active and buds are popping on our trees, so warm weather can't be far behind.

Our front porch is looking quite barren after a long winter.  Since it's still a bit early to add flowers to the pots and bring out the summer porch décor, I decided to put together a new wreath for our door.  And I was on a mission to spend as little as possible, since I've been forking out a LOT of money ordering furnishings for our Master Bedroom.  I've decided to participate in the One Room Challenge, which gets underway in a couple of weeks, and have been placing some preliminary orders on things that I know will take several weeks to arrive.  Anyway, the budget is squeaking with tightness right now, haha, and this wreath needed to be made mostly with what I had on hand.  Since I am constantly in creativity mode and have a craft room spilling over with "stuff" I was able to scrounge up most of what you see in it.

I already had a twig wreath that had Fall stems on it, so I took that apart to reuse (reduce, reuse, recycle, right?)  And I have quite a collection of various faux stems, flowers, and branches to work with.  A little tip that helps me when I create wreaths is to work in 3's.  Some of you have seen photos of the wall vases that hang in a frame in our hearth room.  I often buy stems in groups of 3's to place in those vases.  Because I love to change things up around the house regularly, there are quite a few leftover branches that had once been used in the wall vases.  And that's where I began with this "new" wreath.  I had 3 of the yellow-green leafy branches you see here and also 3's of some of the less noticeable stems and branches.  It works well to space the branches apart by 1/3 of the wreath and then just keep inserting more leaves and branches at the same basic intervals, rotating the wreath as you go.  Fern leaves are often a go-to for me because they add texture and fill space well.  Buying faux greenery bushes and cutting them apart is a good way to save a little money.

I really like a woodsy look, a little wild and as natural as possible.  Something I learned after working at a floral shop years ago was to always go a little bigger and a little more loose and free than you think.  After all, Mother Nature doesn't paint her pictures in orderly, tight grids.  Usually, she has a free spirit, which was hard for this perfectionistic designer to learn at first.  But the more I practiced, the better I got at it, and I think the results are positive, don't you?  See how the wreath stretches from door jamb to door jamb?  (I'm waiting for my husband and son to complain about that when they use the door!)

Even though I have gotten free with my styling, I'm still working on breaking out of my color comfort zone, haha.  I wanted this wreath to be subtle in color, blending with the green of our front door.  But I added a hint of white for contrast, and there is a LOT of texture that helps it pop from the background. 

There is one little problem we encounter every spring, though.  The finches and robins that come back year after year to build their nests on our front porch seem to think that I hang door décor for their convenience.  They love to build nests in my wreaths, making it hard for us to come and go through the front door; or worse yet, they build their nests near the door on the light fixture and deconstruct my wreaths to use as their building materials!  So, this wreath is actually coming back into the house until after nesting season.  I'm thinking of putting it on our sunporch for a couple of months to pretty up that space :)

I hope you'll all stop back here the first week of April when I begin my One Room Challenge!  It will be my first attempt at this, and I'm excited about creating a gorgeous Master Bedroom for myself and the hubby.