Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Make a $1.00 Christmas Wreath (or it could be free)

What you need:
a wire coat hanger

a LOT of running pine (what we have is also called running cedar, or Southern ground pine. It's a wild ground covering vine that has little green umbrella-looking leaves that stand up from the prone stems.)

What you do:

Go into the woods and find some running pine. It usually grows on the eastern or northern side of a hill, often under a stand of pines, at least in the eastern/southern US.

Pull up enough for your wreath (a large plastic grocery bag full should make one wreath) but don't denude the place you found it--you'll want it grow back so you can get more in future years.

Bend the coat hanger into a circle. Keep the hook at the top to hang your wreath, but bend it into a circle so it will hang better. You can see the top of the hanger in the top conter of this photo, before I bent it into a better "hook."

Twine the running pine around the coat hanger until your wreath is as full as you want it to be. You will use many strands of the creeper; interweave the stems so they hold each other on the coat hanger, it's the same as if you were winding winding ribbons around the hanger.

When your wreath is full enough, use small pieces of the running pine to fill in any holes or rough places in the green circle.

When the wreath meets with your satisfaction, add trim. If your wreath will be outside, take that in consideration when you choose decorations, and be sure to attach them tightly with wire or strong string.

I said this is a $1.00 wreath because that's how much the glass balls and beads I used cost me for the one I made today. If you decide to use natural trim--pine cones, holly, etc-- or items you already own, then your wreath could be free!


Jaime said...

We have lots of creeping pine up yonder on the walking trails behind the housing development. I'm going to remember this for next year when my legs are all better. I love this idea!

And P.S. I will get you lots of wire coat hangers for next year.

Granny Sue said...

Thank you! I had some you know, but gave them to a clothes closet when I replaced them with plastic ones (bad idea, to replace them).

Since you like the garlands, Jaime, you could use the creeping pine for that too, I think--we used to twist it with tinsel and use it down the stair rail when I was a girl. I've used it as a garland at my house too, although it was a long time ago.

The problem I've had is not being able to both gather the greens and then do the decorations. It's always dark when I get home! So Larry has been getting them for me, and I can work with them in the house at night. Messy, but at least I get to do it!

Jaime said...

I knew the destructions (yes, I know I said destructions - that what I call it when I'm going to make anything, lol) for a homemade wreath were in here somewhere, I just had to hunt it down.

Anita said...

My mom always did this with the branches that we cut off the bottom of the tree and I do it some years. I think she used fishing line to hold them on. I use some florist wire on mine. I save those old wire hangers just for this.

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