I did say I would

I did say I felt inspired to make a wreath for work and work commenced quite quickly.

Initially I was going to make felt for the flowers but then decided I should use whatever was in my stash. Simon wanted traditional and fortunately I did have some felt in shades of red.

Next year it may have to be one with more colour and exuberance although this has worked out very well. What is it about wreaths that fascinates me? I wish I knew, all I know is that I want to make more.

My spring wreath

Life rushes by so quickly that I’ve only just realised that I never showed you the full pictures of my spring wreath. I made it as a sample to inspire people at the workshop but love it and now have it on my front door.

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A polystyrene half ring was used for the base, which was covered in carded Merino in shades of brown and green. Early spring when the daffodils are out doesn’t have masses of green which is why I wanted to include browns.

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There’s a contorted willow in my garden which is now somewhat denuded of small branches as we availed ourselves of it’s bounty.

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There’s very little variety of plant material in the wreath, just daffodils, willow and a few leaves, which just goes to show that less can be more. I think it’s very successful.

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The stamens were made separately and needle felted in afterwards.

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Our door shows it off wonderfully. I seem to have taken a lot of photos don’t I? Did I mention I like it?

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There are so many more wreath ideas zipping about in my head that I must make time soon to make another one.

 

Spring wreaths

Here’s photos of two  of the finished spring wreaths with the others to follow later. First up – pastels by Lisa.

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A great first ever piece of wet felting don’t you think? Lisa was considering adding more leaves  and pink blossom to it so it may change.

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Sue eschewed pastels and went for strong orange and yellow.

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It’s quite different but no less successful. The Trillium shape works very well with the anemones and daffodil.

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I do enjoy the wreath workshops and have at least three more in the planning but I think they’ll need yo wait until next year.

 

Tomorrow

It’s the Spring Wreath workshops tomorrow. I don’t know what it is about wreaths but I really do enjoy creating them. As I write there are another three jostling for space in my head, that I must try and find time to make.

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Wreath workshop

This is quite late as I’ve been so busy with work and the Knitting and Stitching show at Harrogate. Not until the end of the day did I realise the camera was on the wrong setting  but at least you can see the beautiful wreaths that were made. It’s just a shame that people took them home at the end of the day, they’d have made a nice display on my wall. The beauty below is by Alison.

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We began by covering a half polystyrene ring with carded Merino. Whilst they were drying we made felt in wonderful autumn colours from which we cut various leaf shapes.

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The wreath above is made by Jeni and I love the bountiful feel of it. The purple, yellow and blue wool are needle felted acorns in real acorn caps.

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Lesley made a lovely job of the wreath above with a hand made cord to hang it by.

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The beautiful  wreath above is by Sue. I love that each wreath is different but they’re all so wonderful. I may have to do another wreath workshop, they’re such fun.

Here’s two I made earlier

These two wreaths were made as samples for the workshop held earlier in the month. I prefer to base my wreaths on polystyrene half rings which give a good solid base andf once covered with wool, sectionss can be left bare if desired and still look good. They also have the benefit of being able to pin your felt into place prior to glueing them on.

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This first wreath is based on the fab fiery colours we see in Autumn. Carded Merino is wrapped around the ring and then felted into place.

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Needle felted acrons in real acorn caps are attached along with, beech nut shells and pine cones.

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Various leaf shapes were cut from the golden felt, positioned with pins and once I was happy with the design they were glued in place. A mustard ribbon provides the hanging meachanism. My second wreath is based on woodland colours.

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Using various remnants of felt from my stash I used just one leaf shape throughout. The leaves on the right are cut from a felt which had been stitched and where possible I attempted to get the stitching running down the centre of the leaf like a vein.

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Found objects like horse chestnuts, beech shells and pine cones give a lovely contrast to the felt.

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Instead of ribbon to hang this one I used the cord from the skirt that I turned into a bag earlier in the year (post here) and the remainder of the cord has been used up in the wreath workshop. It really pleases me that every little bit is reused. Making these wreaths gives me so much enjoyment that I may just have to do a spring one next.

Wreath

I make no excuses, there’s lots of photos on this post as I really want to show you all the different components of this wreath. I made several seasonal wreaths for my Christmas wreath workshop and felt I should also make one which could be used year round.

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It looks lovely on our front door and you can see that I created it with this position in mind, even using blue greens on the wreath.

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I’ve used a polystyrene ring and covered it with a blend of carded Merino in various greens (Light Olive, Light Grass, Spearmint, Sea Green and a tiny amount of Dark Leaf). I then wrapped the boucle yarn round before wet felting it all to the ring.

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The key is to keep your wool tight when wrapping so it doesn’t shift and expose the polystyrene and also so it takes less time to felt down. It’s worth making the ring look good as it can be seen from the side unless you make a very full ring.

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I wet felted the lillies and stamens before attaching them with hot glue to the wreath. It’s a blend of Watermelon, Pale Pink and Natural from Adelaide Walker. On the tip of the stamens I’ve used Old Gold.

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Couldn’t resist showing them a second time 🙂  The spiky leaves are the leftover from when I cut out other leaf shapes. After pulling them around and stretching to points I stitched the bits together before glueing them on.

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Fo the leaves I began by making a sheet of felt in various greens, using up any scraps I had. This allowed me to play with different shapes. The lily type leaf above was cut from the felt and then the detail added by needle felting. If you make your sheet of felt with different shades on each side it gives you twice the green options for the same amount of work.

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The hydrangea flowers were also cut from a sheet of felt made from Pale Pink and Pale Purple Merino. They’re attached to the wreath by the metallic head pins which are are shiny and add an extra dimension to the flower. A local man made the wooden button from a tree branch and it’s great to be able to see the rings.  The leaves are triangles cut from the felt sheet, the short end pinched together and held with a stitch before they were glued on. Simple but very effective.

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These flowers were actually on a previous project which I was never happy with so I cut them off. It’s a combination of Wensleydale and dyed English wool with sead beads as embellishments.

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Having different textures and shapes is important. The leaves here are the remainder of the project I didn’t like. After cutting them out with pinking shears I added the veins through needle felting.

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Vintage buttons from what was my Grandma’s button stash but which now belongs to me. They’re attached with the metallic headed pins again. Driftwood collected on my holiday is fastened together with silver coloured jewellery wire and the whole thing stuck on with hot glue.

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So pleased with this. there’s a birthday in the house this week so I think it should be on the door now in celebration.

Sample wreaths

I don’t think I’ve shown you the wreaths which I used at my recent workshop, I’m sure you’ll be able to see how they influenced people. This is the first wreath I ever made but it’s far from being my favurite mainly because I used a full ring and I think it works better on a half or flat ring. The white poinsettia are pretty though and for that reason I keep it.

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I love this next wreath made on a doughnut of cardboard. Each of the leaves was created by making felt, cutting out circles folding them up, stitching them and then glueing them on. Love it and the berries, I don’t know where it’s going to go but I need to find space for it in the house somewhere, at least over winter.

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This next was created from a cheap wreath bought in a cheap shop (you know the kind). It had horrible plastic leaves and nasty gold coloured items on it but I ripped those off and reused it to create this lovely little item below. The bird is needlefelted and I made the cord from wool yarn and a metallic thread. The contrast of the wire and beads really make it for me. Must find a space for it.

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Opinions are split in the house on the next one. I love the cold blue ribbon but Hubby thinks it should have been red. Me, I like the contrast. After wrapping the half polysytrene ring with carded wool I wrapped red mohair yarn around it then felted it on. The rose and ribbon are attached with pins as I like the shiny heads. The spirals (wired and bent round a pencil) and ribbon for hanging have been glued on. IMG_6813

IMG_6819 I’m feeling the need to find a space for this one too. At least when I put them away I won’t need stacks of room as these are all small samples. I have made a larger wreath but as that isn’t Christmas, or even winter, themed I thought I’d save it and show it in the new year.

Friendship, food and creativity

It’s time again to create some garden provided decorations for the house. This year daughter Charlotte invited her friend Daisy and mother Lorraine along. We shared a lunch of crusty bread soup, cheese and ham followed by brownies and mince pies (yes, both deserts for my daughter!) delicious. And yet we still found time for some of this.

Not only are these hearts by Lorraine and Daisy fabulous but the top one has cranberries on to feed the birds and the bottom one has holly berries for them. Great idea, I may have to try this next year.

My wreath made from copper beech, glitter clad cinnamon sticks and orange slices. First time Hubby has gone wow at one of these offerings, must be doing something right.

Beech, partially sprayed hydrangea and sprayed silver veronica for this simple arrangement for the porch.

 

Above – For the living room,

Fantastic offerings from my daughter, she never knows what she’s going to make until she’s already doing it.

Wonderfully bright and colourful for the hall – also by Charlotte. two more creative itmes from Charlotte, a wonderful stick reindeer

and some meticulously created snowflakes which were quite labour intensive but so worth it.

 

Christmas greenery

My daughter and I had a couple of friends round yesterday and made a valiant attempt at some greenery for the festive season. The decoration below is residing in my living room and is on a round glass plate. I was so pleased not to have centered the candle. It’s a little heavy but I’m happy to live with it. Very little colour in it you’ll notice – it’s all about the greenery this year.

First attempt at a wrapped sray was last year when it all fell on the floor whenever I attmpted to hang it up. This year I used a spray holder with much greater success. I’m really quite chuffed at how this one has turned out.

We have a couple of candles on the mantelpiece and I sometimes worry about the naked flame near the wallpaper so decided lanterns would be a good idea. I like curvy storm lanterns but most are too large for our narrow space but then I spotted some ridiculously over sized wine glasses in the charity shop. If you ignore the stem the shape is a curvy storm lantern.

My first ever garland. It’s worked very well and it’s all down to the advice from good friend Kate – thanks Kate