Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Let the Wreath Making Begin

Today I started assembling the wreaths.  Always start with your largest wreath if you are making different size wreaths because you will need to use your largest fullest cuttings for the largest wreaths.The smaller wreaths can use the smaller cuttings.  So  I started with the extra large wreath that will hang on the middle living room window on the front of my house.

I will make two passes around the wreath frame to get a full lush wreath.  A large skinny thin wreath just won't get it.  I normally start with the inside first.  The large wreaths are more cumbersome to work with because they are heavier and don't easily turn on the table so I asked an elf (my husband) to help me with the big wreath.

First attach your wire to the frame.  If you are making a wreath with a variety of evergreens just make sure that you vary the assortment in each bundle.  I use three cuttings in each bundle.  My elf would hand me bundles and I would wrap the wire around the bundle and frame keeping the wire taut and making one or two passes with the wire depending on whether the cuttings were laying correctly or not after one wrap of wire.



The next bundle is laid over the bottom of the first bundle and so on. When you get to the last bundle, you will need to lift up the first bundle to tuck your last bundle under your first bundle.  The trick is to keep your wire taut at all times.  This keeps the cuttings tight to the frame.

The outside pass takes a little longer because as you wrap the wire around the frame you need to make sure you do not crush the bundles on the first pass.  I have tried to make my huge wreaths by going around one time by putting two bundles side by side but those wreaths never come out round. You may have better luck but this is the method that works for me.

As I make my outside pass I keep checking for roundness.  I'm looking for general roundness because after I hang the wreath a can snip a little here and there to fine tune.  But the beauty of using mixed greens is that it is more casual and loose so I don't fret too much about the shape at this stage.  To finish up leave about 8 inches of wire and loop it around the wire frame and tie it off.The huge wreath took 40 minutes for the two of us to make.

I repeated the method for the medium sized wreath except it take just one pass around the frame. You can make the wreath appear larger by making your bundles lean to the outside.  This is where the odd curved cuttings come in handy.  The medium size wreath takes about 15 minutes to make.

We made two medium size wreaths and one huge wreath before the sun disappeared.  But that was fine with me because my hands were so cold I could barely move my fingers.  I tried to use gloves but I kept getting them caught under the wire. We might have enough left for another medium size wreath and a small wreath for the front door.  There is just one small pile of mixed cuttings left out of the five piles that I started with at the beginninng of the day.

Tomorrow I will show you how we hang them.  The huge wreath weighs about 25-30 pounds so that takes a little more effort to hang it surely.