By Alison Martin and Billie Martin
If you are like so many of us who are already itching to start decorating for the holidays even before the Halloween candy is all gone, Well-Being has some tips for knockout DIY decorations that won’t break the bank. Mother Nature provides a wealth of ideal materials that you can find as close as your backyard. And, if you aren’t blessed with a yard lush with vegetation, check with friends and neighbors or take a walk in the woods. There are so many possibilities; you’re certain to find everything you need to deck the halls the natural way.
Natural Holiday Wreath For the purpose of this article we have put together a holiday wreath, but the same principles can be applied to create garland or other pieces.
STEP 1: Gather your materials. We used muscadine vine but you can use any kind of vine that can be twisted into a wreath. Other common materials to consider are sprigs of evergreen, such as pine, Leyland cypress, magnolia, boxwood or holly. For color and texture we used dried hydrangea blooms, the flowers of a “popcorn” or talla tree, and apples. Some other possibilities are holly berries, nandina berries, dried seedpods, pinecones, magnolia seedpods and herbs.
STEP 2: Organize the tools you will need. Our tools included scissors, spray paint, a hot glue gun, wooden skewers and twist ties. For heavier plant materials with hard stems, you might need small pruning sheers.
STEP 3: Form a wreath out of the vine.
STEP 4: Secure a looped twist tie to the top of the vine wreath at the back for hanging.
STEP 5: Add a bow (optional). We found ribbon from an old wreath that could be recycled.
STEP 6: Begin filling in the wreath with greenery. For our greenery, we used Leyland cypress, starting at the top and bottom of the wreath and working our way around the sides, using hot glue to hold the pieces in place.
STEP 7: Add another vine to secure the sprigs of greenery in place.
STEP 8: Using skewers stick about halfway through an apple and insert into the wreath.
STEP 9: Add other materials to fill in intervals around the wreath. Secure with hot glue. You can use dried blooms, berries, or herbs like yarrow, rosemary or lavender for color and fragrance.
STEP 10: Find the perfect place for your holiday creation and enjoy. When the holidays are just a memory, all the natural materials can be recycled or composted.