Wreaths from Garden and Roadside

Oh, did the barn smell delicious from the bay leaves we used on Pat’s and my annual wreath-making day. The air was permeated with the pungent aroma of the bay, especially after it warmed up a bit and the fragrance was released. Though we use many of the same materials from year to year, the wreaths we produce always look different. Pat makes two simultaneously because she wants to hang two identical ones on her front double doors. She’s very methodical and minimalist, using only five ingredients: Magnolia leaves and the big fat buds, Giant Buckwheat, Nandina berries, and Hydrangeas. Here’s a detail of her wreath. I also make two but in series and create as I go along, choosing the basic ingredients I want but cramming as many as possible into the little bunches or “bouquets” I wrap onto the metal form. I used bay for both but created entirely different looks by using lots of Giant Buckwheat and Nandina berries on one and grasses and weeds on the other, highlighted by dried yellow Achillea. For me, the challenge is in the choosing–I never quite know what the wreath will look like until I wire the final bunch on. When I’m working so close, I cannot see the overall effect. It’s not until I hang it up and stand back that the design of my random selection reveals itself. A professional might not be impressed, but I feel that every wreath is unique and beautiful. That’s what I tell my friends and students–just do it, and you’ll come up with a fantastic wreath. There may still be some usable materials out in your garden. Remember, things look different once dried. Test many different flowers and weeds; you just never know what they’ll look like or how they’ll hold up when they’re dry. Go to the Wreath page of my website, www.sandybakerwriter.com, for directions or ideas on materials to collect. Once you make a wreath, you’ll want to make many more. Just do it.


About writersandy

Writer, Gardener, Crafter
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3 Responses to Wreaths from Garden and Roadside

  1. Love the pictures and descriptions. . . every one of these is a striking work of art. That robin’s egg blue door really makes them pop.

  2. Those are absolutely gorgeous, Sandy! Love them!

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