Today the clocks went back, and whilst the rest of the world seems to be swept up in pumpkins and cider, I’m already slowly easing into our next season. Autumn is just really one step closer to winter after all. After years of living in Asia where the lead up to Christmas is full of coconuts and palm trees, I’m so excited for everything that our cold dark little island has to offer at this time of year.
There are so many things that I love about the lead up to Christmas, when the cold finally starts to blow in. Waking up in what feels like the dead of night, and seeing the sun rise as London comes to life. That first frost that lays like a heavy blanket on the grass, and wet socks from walking for too long in shoes that aren’t made for this weather, only to come home and snooze by a warm fire.
It’s at this time of year that hot chocolate and eggnog are no longer treats, but necessities. You can actually smell the cold, crisp air and it makes you feel alive.
We spent the early part of this weekend foraging and shopping for greenery, twigs and branches, and woke early for a slow morning of hot coffee and seasonal wreath making. Having never tried to make a wreath before, I was surprised but how easy it was, and how something so simple looks so beautiful.
- Christmas playlist - find mine here
- Assorted greenery and flowers - I used: eucalyptus, baby's breath, aspidistra leaves, cotton flowers, holly leaves, ivy, and astilbe
- Long flexible branches - grapevine or willow would be perfect, but I couldn't get hold of this and used berry vines and soft rucus which worked perfectly as the greenery was already there!
- A metal hanging ring - picked up at my local garden centre
- Floristry wire - I used a copper wire found at my local DIY store, but have found something similar here
- Scissors - these are beautiful and will cut through the toughest vines
- Burlap twine
If you’re using a metal ring, start by laying the eucalyptus where you would like it to sit. I decided to fill the bottom half of the wreath with the eucalyptus hanging off to the right. Once you’re happy with the placement, you can start to secure it with the wire. I found it easier to pre-cut the wire to 2cm pieces so it was ready to use. Once the eucalyptus was in place, I bunched up some aspidistra leaves and baby’s breath and placed it into the wreath, securing it with the wire. I then hung it up, and placed the cotton on the wreath. You could secure it, but I found it easier to just place it where needed, and it hasn’t budged yet.
For the next wreath I used long berry vines. We’re lucky to have a garden overflowing with small red berry vines, but the really bending long ones were picked up at our local florist for a few pounds and I padded out the sparse parts with the berries from our garden.
With the long vines, you just need to hold one end in your left hand and slowly bend the vine around with your right hand until you bring them together. Tuck the leftover length into the vine, and cut off any of the remaining vine that you don’t need and secure in place with the wire. With these vines, there tends to be a lot of smaller branches that stem off. I simply tucked these in and secured any of the wilder ones with some wire.
At this point you can start to add the ivy, I chose to fill the right side with the ivy and then add some holly on the bottom left corner. The holly can be a bit prickly, so just place these branches gently into the vines and they should stay put perfectly.
Then just gently tie some burlap twine around the top of the wreath and hang! You might not get a perfect circle with the more natural wreaths but I think they're just as lovely!
This next wreath of soft ruscus was by far the easiest. Simply bend the ruscus into a circular shape, as before and secure with wire.
Then all you need to do is fill the wreath with your chosen flowers, greenery and flowering plants. I went for dark purple astilbe and baby’s breath in the bottom left hand corner but this would also be beautiful filled completely.
If you happen to try your hand at making one of these wreaths, or making one of your own then I would love to see what you come up with! Just make sure you comment below with the link, or use the the hashtag #freckleandwreath on instagram.
And if this hasn’t got you excited for winter then this stovetop christmas scent should do the trick. First you’ll need to collect some pine or spruce branches. Once home, fill a small saucepan with water and simmer them on a very low heat with fresh orange slices and cinnamon sticks. You could add anything you like, such as cloves, rosemary and even some essential oils to simmer and infuse throughout the day.
** I was kindly asked by Pinterest to be a part of their ‘Inspired by Pinterest’ Christmas campaign, which is running from 2nd - 13th November. Twelve content creators were asked to come up with a Christmas themed post, that represents what Christmas means to them. I hope that you enjoy this, and I highly recommend that you check out the other amazing posts here.