Grapevine wreaths have been a classic winter decoration in many parts of the world for thousands of years. This year, try putting a twist on the timeless craft by making mini ornaments in the same style. These colorful items are perfect for sprucing up front door collages, winter mantles, mailboxes, Thanksgiving tables, Christmas trees, or holiday gifts.
Step 1 - Getting Started
There are several standard types of wreath bases—grapevine, straw, and foam. Grapevine and straw are both cheap to source and good for the environment. If you're a gardener and have strong vines in your yard, you might already have these materials close to hand. Instead of composting them, why not turn them into a a source of holiday cheer?
Step 2 - Applying Ribbon
Depending on the holiday, choose some colored ribbon (orange and/or gold for Halloween and Thanksgiving, red or green for Christmas, etc.). One smart looking approach is to wind it all the way around the wreath, leaving about one inch between the strands, creating angular stripes like the ones on a candy cane. At the top of the wreath, cut a piece of ribbon and tie it tightly around the base, then use the additional ribbon to create a tight bow. This is what you'll use to hang the ornament.
Step 3 - Attaching Decorations
This is the creative part so there are no specific rules to follow. You can use clear glue, maybe from a hot glue gun, or a basic needle and thread to attach decorations. You may want to keep the back clear of decor so that when it's placed against a door, window, or mantle, it will lie flush with the surface.
Decoration materials may include natural elements like sprigs of holly or fir, fall-colored leaves, acorns, or small pinecones, miniature cutouts of holiday themed items like pumpkins, brooms, or even tiny little hand-wrapped presents. You can also use a variety of fresh, dried, or silk flowers to add color and texture. Hobby and craft stores are good spots to mine for potential items, pharmacies tend to stock holiday themed materials on a seasonal basis, and dollar stores can be a crafting treasure trove.
If you're creating wreaths to use as a decoration for a Christmas gift package, you can make these using the same steps as those for a hanging ornament. With these, the ornament is an additional gift to go along with the wrapped present. These wreaths can be created with a theme, such as all red or gold ribbon highlighted with greenery, gold bells, and a miniature Santa or a reindeer glued to the inner base.
Step 4 - Fragrance
For an optional, cheery boost, you can incorporate a seasonal potpourri, such as pumpkin spice, cinnamon, and mulberry. Carefully hot glue several pieces of the potpourri to the wreath among and between the other decorations. If you plan to keep the ornaments to use again, the potpourri pieces can be replaced at any time once the scent begins to diminish.
Step 5 - Final Touches
Once the ornament's created, give it a quick overview and fill in any open spaces with additional decorations. If any glue is showing, add a small dab and cover it with a decoration or bit of potpourri. Place the wreaths on a flat surface, such as a table or countertop and allow them to thoroughly dry.
Step 6 - Storing Wreaths
Once a holiday is over, you'll want to store the ornaments so they don't get damaged. Use the same packing process as you would for breakable Christmas ornaments like glass bulbs. A good way to pack mini wreaths is to wrap each wreath in tissue paper and place it in a sturdy box with a tight-fitting lid. You can stack the tissue-wrapped wreaths with an additional layer of tissue paper in-between.
Safety Warning: Unless you have a special, child-safe model, don't allow children to use the glue gun, as the tip is very hot and can cause burns.