Making an advent wreath is something I look forward to every year though it took me a while to find the courage to actually make one, thinking it was too complicated and difficult. There are endless options and ways to make them and there is definitely no right or wrong, so I encourage you to try it out if you haven’t!
Here I share a few tips and techniques a wise old gardener taught me many moons ago and I hope they inspire you this Christmas.
You will need:
- fresh greenery
- garden wire
- metal wreath
- 4 candles
- seasonal decorations (bundles of cinnamon sticks, dried orange slices, pinecones, or whatever you fancy!) Nature Table & Wreath Decorations Advent & Christmas
A note on greenery: Ideally you want to collect 3 different types to have a variety of texture and colour. I find yew works great as a base and everything else can be added on top. Make sure you find 2 or 3 sprigs of holly with red berries to add that extra festive mood and colour!
Always be mindful and respectful of what and where you forage. You only need little amounts. And do keep in mind what greenery you use if you are doing this activity with little ones as many berries (such as yew berries) are poisonous.
It’s all in the prep!
Separate the foliage you’ve gathered and prepare independently. Cut your yew branches as long as they remain green and flexible (basically until the stem gets stiff). I find cutting them between 40 and 50cm is ideal to provide continuity to the structure but still keep it easy to handle.
Next, trim the rest of the material creating small bundles with 2, 3 or 4 springs at a time, depending how thick and lush they are. Make your tiny bouquets around 10cm long. You will be adding these onto the yew base.
Putting it together:
One of the trickiest bits I always struggled with was adding the candles at the end and ensuring they were safely secured onto the wreath so finding this structure to include in the base was a gamechanger! Metal Ring Advent Wreath
I find it helpful to think of your wreath as a clock: if you are righthanded, start at 9 o’clock and work the round counter clockwise; if you are left-handed, start at 3 o’clock and work clockwise.
Start by wrapping a generous bunch of yew at its tip onto the metal structure with the garden wire. Wrap the garden wire a few times around the yew sprigs, 10 cm below the tip. Pull it tight to ensure its safely attached. This will become your base and you will be adding greenery on top of it, always working from the tips, downwards. If you are not using the metal structure I mentioned, follow the same instructions, just shape as you go accordingly, using the yew as your base until you have a good size circle (I find 25cm a good diameter for a table centrepiece).
Add the bundles of greenery one by one, safely secured with the garden wire, every few centimetres ensuring you cover all sides of the wreath evenly, keeping the base flat. I find it useful to start with a bundle on the outer side of the wreath, then add another on top and finish with the inside, working in a sort of spiral.
Add longer branches of yew when needed keeping a consistent thickness throughout the wreath.
Add a stem of holly with berries or something special every so often to keep if festive and cheerful. Be creative and try different options.
Finish by tucking in your last bouquet of greenery underneath the first yew bundle. Give it several rounds of wire and tie securely.
Once you have your basic wreath done, go back to add bits wherever you find gaps and hide wire if needed.
Now you are ready for your candles and the final touches. This is a good time to add holly as its hard to handle in the round and you want the red berries to stand out! Add a few pinecones around the candles, cinnamon sticks, dried oranges or whatever you feel inspired to do. This pack has a great variety of items that will make your wreath unique and special Nature Table & Wreath Decorations Advent & Cristmas | Conscious Craft
You’re now ready to light your candles and experience the warmth it will bring to your home this festive season. Enjoy!
Spray your wreath with water regularly to ensure it keeps fresh until Christmas!