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How To Make An Evergreen Wreath

Nothing beats the “wow” factor of a handmade wreath or garland during the Christmas holidays. Best part it is another EASY Christmas craft. Another plus, it doesn’t cost a lot (Under $5 again).

First assemble your tools and any helpers. (Picture me yelling this a faux German accent, because that’s how it sounds in my head) Affiliate links to follow.

  1. Christmas Helper: Make sure to have other Christmas projects for the helper to do unless you want pine sap on EVERYTHING
  2. Wire Wreath Form*/Frame/Box: If you Google it you’ll find one or they have them at craft stores for less than $5. Let me give you a tip here; go with the smaller form. Whichever size you think looks right, go with the smaller one. Let me repeat: Go Smaller! Once you put the branches on it ends up being twice the size you expected. “Granny” and I have created some big, honking wreaths in the past.
  3. Floral Wire 24 Gauge*: I like a 24 gauge, just make sure it’s thick enough that you can pull it without it breaking but thin enough to wind easily. I like the green florist wire because If I’m not careful (which I’m not usually) it will blend better.
  4. Greenery: Your choice. I like to mix mine. It takes a whole lot less than you would think. I made a door wreath with three around 3ft long branches. Cut the branch ends into 6in pieces before you start. This makes the whole process flow faster. Pine, ivy, boxwood, magnolia leaves, holly, etc. all work.
  5. Cheap/Old Clippers: Once you cut the wire and gummy pine trees they’re pretty much done. I always just use my old garden shears for this project.

Step 1

Take one end of the wire and twist it around the frame to hook it. No fancy girlscout knot needed, just make sure that puppy is gonna stay in place.

Step 2

Take a hand full of greenery and bundle it together lay it at a slight diagonal on the wreath form with the cut ends slightly over where you hooked the wire. Then pull the wire around the frame and bundle a couple of times. This isn’t rocket-surgery (as we say in this house) just wrap the damn wire as many times as you want.

Man, do I need to put on some lotion and file my nails…

Step 3

Take another bundle of greenery and lay it over-lapping the first. Continue wrapping with the wire. DO NOT cut and rehook the wire, it won’t be as tight and it’s a freaking waste of time. If you keep wrapping you can knock this puppy out in less that 15 minutes (especially if it’s 30 degrees out, like it was the evening I was creating this one).

Step 4

Just keep bundling greenery and wrapping. Yeah, it really is that easy.When you get all the way back to the beginning just tuck the final bundle under the first one, and then tie the wire to the underside. Or if your hands are completely numb and have been stabbed by pine needles a million times, just kind of shove the wire in the back of the wreath. Perhaps, I should add leather gloves to my list of tools.

Not my neatest wreath, but damn it was cold. You bundle in 30 degrees with wind and see how neat your’s turns out.

Viola! Your finished… In theory. A plain evergreen circle can be a clean modern decoration. Especially if you focus on branch lengths being the same, or trim them when completed. However, I have a little bit of country tackiness in my bones so I have to glitz mine up. I’ll show you how to create the faux snow tomorrow, it is another heavily modified 50’s recipe.

If anyone actually makes a wreath with this tutorial please let me know. I would love to see any pictures!

Easy evergreen wreath tutorial.  Anyone can make a wreath for Christmas decoration or even sales at Farmer's Markets and Craft Shows.
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Homemade Window Frosting

Ever seen the spray frosting for windows in a can? Yeah, I’m not sure how white spatter looks at all like ice crystals or even window frost for that matter. I wanted to find a good/cheap alternative to get the icy frost on the front door sidelights for the Christmas tour. After researching and tinkering I found a pretty good recipe:

  • 1 bottle of beer (12 oz) Don’t tell Patrick I sacrificed on of his babies!
  • 6 heaping tablespoons of Epsom salt

Total cost: $4 (will cover a lot of window panes)

Mix the beer and Epsom salt and let it set until mostly dissolved and foam has gone down (around 20-30 minutes).

Then I took an old terry rag an dabbed it on the outside edges of the windows. I put it on the outside because these are the original single pane sidelights so they get condensation at night and the epsom-beer mix has to dry to form the crystals. I just did the edges to give it the lightly frosted look.

From beer to frost (with a lovely reflection of the neighbors)

There are a few notes:

  1. Clean the windows first
  2. Use a deep bowl; the beer-epsom salt mix really foams
  3. Dab it on as thick as you can but avoid drips if your not coating the whole window
  4. After it sets for a minute but BEFORE it dries swipe the rag diagonally to create the long jagged crystals, the round ice flowers seem to form where the liquid was a little thicker
  5. You can put a second layer on but it didn’t really make a difference and in some places made the frost show drip spots instead of crystals
  6. I tried dipping some glass votives in the mix to make frosted glass. While, it does frost them but they didn’t have enough surface area to make the pretty crystal formations. My final decision? Wash them off.

Also, it sticks pretty well so you aren’t going to accidentally scratch it right off, but it came off just fine using my homemade window cleaner. Why not another recipe while were at it? Window Cleaner:

  • 1 part white vinegar
  • 1 part water
  • 1 part rubbing alcohol
  • I’ve heard you can add a couple drops of essential oil to change the smell. I don’t mind vinegar so I haven’t tried it before.

I just throw it all in a spray bottle and away I go. Back to the frost: I was very pleased with the authentic ice look. Here’s a closer view so you can see the pretty formations.

So what’s the verdict? Does it look like ice on the windows or did I just waste one of Patrick’s beers?