Jude has been part of the Horticulture team at Winterbourne for over a decade and has solidified herself as chief festive decorator. Every year her beautiful wreaths wow visitors and this year she’s sharing all of her top tips so you can make your own at home too.
Here are 5 easy steps to making a wreath.
Cut back lots of greenery such as leylandii conifers or other such conifers, Christmas tree looking foliage such as Korean fir or any other evergreens that are available to you. Cut the foliage up into 15 to 20cm pieces. This is called greening up. You will need a wheel barrow full or two large trugs full. If you didn’t have the facility to collect foliage from your garden then you could use an actual real Christmas tree and cut up into 15 to 20 cm pieces.
Prepare a 30 cm copper wire wreath ring with wreath wrap, that is wrapped around the wreath ring, then use floristry wire on a reel to secure moist sphagnum moss (I actually used hessian to wrap around the copper wreath ring which is also very effective). If you need an alternative, instead of using a copper wire wreath ring, a reel of 2.5mm galvanised wire can be fashioned into the same shape with pieces of stub wire to connect the 30cm ring to the smaller 28 cm inner ring, or a pre-made padded wreath base such as Oasis could be used.
The wire that has been wrapped on the wreath ring to secure the moss is sufficient enough to be able to poke in 15 to 20 cm lengths of your chosen foliage. I have used berried holly, Arum italicum leaves wired on with floristry wire, pine cones, and chillies. I wound the wire around the cones and also poked wire through the chilli stalk itself. These can then be strategically placed by wiring them on to the evergreen foliage which is used as your base.
If you like, then you can add ribbons and bows to the wreath that you have made but that depends on how you want the finished wreath to look. We kept our wreath looking naturalistic by using things that we had collected from the garden here at Winterbourne.
The final step is to go and hang your finished wreath on to the door of your choice. You can use decorative, shiny gift wrap ribbon or any wired ribbon, raffia or twine, as long as it is strong enough to be able to hold the weight of the wreath. A plastic wreath hanger which is shaped to hang over any door, and still allow the door to close, is useful if its available from a Christmas department. Once the wreath is hung on the door I tend to see if any more needs adding on to it and then give it a good primping up.