Simple Foraged Christmas Wreath

I like artificial wreaths indoors just for the ease of maintenance, but I love having a real wreath on the front door. There is something about the smell of pine forest and nature as you walk in the door that just sets the stage for warm and comfortable holiday feelings.

But let’s be real. The things can be expensive.

Just doing a quick online search, I’m seeing inexpensive large live wreaths for $35-39 and some as high as $89.99! Are you kidding? If I have that kind of money to put into my door, I’m going to put it into the hardware, the paint, or saving up to build the columns, expanded porch, and porch covering we want to add on {think something like this}.

Why would I spend that much money on something I’m just going to break down into potpourri jars after the holidays are over {because I totally do this – I never just throw greenery away}.

Well, turns out, there are much better ways to make yourself a beautiful wreath – at least if you live in the woods, or right next to them. You just need a grapevine wreath – which I found for $9 marked down from $15 at Michaels‘ – a good hiking trail, some clippers, a cloth bag, some gloves to handle the prickly stuff, some leftover ribbon, and you’re ready to forage a wreath!

With my sister’s help, I went out for a walk in our woods with my clippers and came back with a handful of Eastern Red Cedar fronds {it’s not a true cedar, but a juniper – and fortunately non toxic, but I still wouldn’t try eating the berries}, American holly, and pine cones. We decided that would be enough to make our wreath.

We started by pulling out some extra burlap ribbon and red ribbon and wrapping our grapevine wreath. That would give us something to glue things to, as we were trying not to attach anything to the grapevine {because we’ll use it again}. The whole idea is for Christmas decoration and wrapping hoarders like me to use up some of their extra ribbon, but you can pick up burlap ribbon {$6 at Michaels} and other Christmas ribbons if you want or need something different.

It doesn’t take a whole lot of wrapping to cover the wreath just enough. I did a lazy wrap, leaving lots of sections of grapevine exposed – because I need that space to shove stems of cedar and holly between the twigs.

Please ignore the really busy counter. I’m so ready to break it out and replace it. We’re still in the “Before” stage in the kitchen, big time. Kitchens cost money, and we’re saving away – because you’d better believe we’re going to do this kitchen right!

Okay, so remember what I said about adding your branches by shoving them between the twigs of the grapevine wreath? That’s exactly what you do. Add one at a time, and you can either weave them in around each other for a nice tight wreath or let them explode everywhere for a wilder look. I like the wilder look.

I do try to keep them all pointing in the same direction. That adds a nice flow to the organization of the wreath.

I made sure to clip some of the branches where the berries were showing just for a nice blue touch against the branches. Then I added holly for accent intermittently around the outside.

Finally, I broke out the glue gun and made sure the branches were secured to the ribbon wrap. Then I glued several pinecones to the wreath and secured the ends so that they would look like a bow. They were too short to make a true bow, but I think they’re passable.

Last and final step?

Hang that wreath on the door!

I love our fun and festive red door, but it’s especially nice to have this time of year!

So there’s our festive door and holiday wreath, with one purchased grapevine wreath, a couple extra ribbons, and a whole bunch of foliage plucked from the surrounding woods. I could have done a better job with the ribbons, but even though the ribbons are a bit sloppy, I love it.

So before you go out and buy a really expensive live wreath, walk out in your backyard or take a hike and see what kind of materials you have! I would love trying this out with the eucalyptus trees and lavender my folks have in their backyard.

Are you guys fans of live wreaths? What would you use in yours?

2 thoughts on “Simple Foraged Christmas Wreath

  1. It has been a while since I’ve written a comment so I thought I would stop by to say “Hi” and see how you’ve been doing… Your wreath looks very nice and you’ve done a good job of putting it up. Happy Holidays to you, too.

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