Winter is in full swing, so we thought we’d try our hand at a tried-and-true seasonal DIY! Add holiday cheer to your home- indoors or outdoors- with this Rustic Wreath DIY. Festooned with bright berries and earthy pine cones, this pastoral wreath looks like a celebration and smells like a freshly cut evergreen. Plus, 95% of the materials you need to make this craft can be foraged from the forest floor! Click through for the full tutorial.
Because most of the materials we’re using are foraged, your first step is to go out into a forest or wooded area and find supplies. I wore these Frenata Upcycled Mitts for my foraging mission because it was snowing (Yay!). I was lucky enough to come across this felled evergreen branch. Using a pair of shears or heavy duty scissors, you want to strip off the branches with greenery on them.
Aim to get 6-8 long pieces and a dozen short pieces. The longer pieces will form the base of your wreath, so they need to have a bit of give to them. If they’re too stiff, they won’t form the curve we want.
The other supplies you’ll need are as follows:
- spool of jewelry wire or other semi-pliable wire
- 8-10 pinecones of varying sizes
- 4-5 branches of berries
- hot glue gun
- 3 yds of burlap ribbon
- a tarp or drop cloth
- contrasting evergreen branches
It should be noted that not everyone can find the same supplies everywhere, so variance is likely! If you happen to come up short on your foraging mission, alternatives for all of these materials can be found at your local craft store.
1. Lay down your tarp or drop cloth. I used a large piece of contractor’s paper, which worked well. This is to protect your floor or table from sap and other debris. If you want to use a traditional wreath frame for this project, skip to step 7 now.
2. Arrange your long evergreen branch in a circle approximately 15″ across.
3. Cut 8 x 9″ pieces of jewelry wire.
4. Use these wire pieces to tie the branches together at regular intervals around the wreath. You want to encircle all branches and double knot or twist the wire to secure.
5. Your wreath should look like this when you’re done.
6. Flip the wreath over and double knot or twist the wire on the back. Trim excess wire.
7. Assemble all of your short pieces including the contrasting branches. I used a combination of White Spruce, Eastern White Cedar and Balsam Fir. Trim your branches to make 6-8 tiny pieces of each type. The pieces should be about 7″ long.
8. Take one piece of each type of tree and layer them to form a bunch.
9. Tie the bunch together at the small end using a 12″ piece of wire. Double knot or twist to secure.
10. Lay the bunch on top of the wreath wherever you want to start. Holding the bunch in place, flip over the wreath and double knot or twist the the excess wire from the bunch on the back side of the wreath. Trim excess wire.
11. Repeat steps 8-10 until you have covered the entire front of the wreath with bunches. Make sure the direction of your bunches is consistent around the whole wreath.
12. Hold up the wreath to find the sturdiest part of the base. Do this by rotating it and seeing which areas don’t sag. If you don’t have a section that is sturdy enough at this point, you will need to reinforce the base with switches (bendy branches stripped of twigs and leaves). Secure these to the back of the wreath using the same method we used to attach the bunches to the front. Once you have found the strongest point, attach a piece of contrasting thread or tape. This marks the top of the wreath where the hanger loop goes.
13. Take your burlap ribbon and unwind it fully from the spool. Starting at the point opposite to your contrasting thread or tape, loosely wrap the wreath all the way around. You should have about 18″ of leftover ribbon when you get back to your starting point. Cut the ribbon accordingly and put the extra ribbon off to the side. Hot glue both ends of the ribbon together.
14. Gather your pine cones and berries.
15. Place the berries where you’d like them to sit on the wreath making sure to leave space for the pinecones. I decided to concentrate all of my decorative elements at the ‘bottom’ of the wreath.
16. Employing the same method we used to attach the bunches, secure the berry branches to the front of the wreath.
17. Prop up the wreath against a wall or box so it is upright. We’re using hot glue for this step, so we want gravity on our side. Place a liberal amount of hot glue on the wreath where you want your first pine cone to go. Firmly press the pine cone into the glue and hold for 10-15 seconds for the glue to cool and set.
18. Continue step 17 until you have your desired number of pine cones. Your wreath should look something like this.
19. Retrieve your piece of extra ribbon.
20. Remove the thread or tape you used to mark the ‘top’ of the wreath.
21. Thread the excess ribbon through between the wreath base and the bunch layer.
22. Tie a very tight bow with the tails of your ribbon.
There you have it! Your wreath is complete and ready to bring festive cheer and a fresh, woodsy scent to your household. Let us know what you think of this tutorial in the comments section below. Happy holidays!
More DIY ideas from STUDIO 403
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