Makes // The one with the hydrangea wreath

Before I get cracking with this new blog article, I wanted to say thank you to everyone who took the time to read ‘The one with the revamped bureau’ and an even bigger thank you to everyone who took even more time to send me a kind comment.  I needn’t have worried about my first proper blog post and what you’d all think because you’re quite a lovely bunch.

So onto the point of this post: my hydrangea wreath.  This was completely inspired from an Instagram account I follow (@lauracolesysmith) who made the most bee-yoo-tiful wreath and posted some stunning pics of it on her IG feed. The second I saw it I knew I had to make one of my own.  I seem to have a knack of making my own life more difficult and this was no exception.  Have you ever tried to find hydrangeas in October? No? Well let me tell you, in a town without farmers markets or florist wholesalers, it is no mean feat. But luckily I have a lovely florist local to my office (shout out to Keepsakes of Yaxley) who kept me a few bunches back on her last delivery of hydrangeas from Holland.  I desperately wanted my wreath to be similar in colour to the IG one I’d been lusting after so I was ecstatic when she told me the only colour she’d be likely to get would be the faded antique type – whoop! The lovely lady even delivered them to my office (via her brother-in-law who is our chef!).

After all the drama of getting the flowers, let’s just take a moment to appreciate how beautiful they are <cue heart eye emoji>

Once I had the flowers, it was a quick dash to Hobbycraft to get the last few bits and then I was ready to start!

Here’s the full list of what I used, where I got them and how much they cost:

  • 6 large stems of hydrangeas (these were £4 a stem but this will vary on the time of year and where you buy them)
  • Florist wire – £3.90 from Amazon
  • 25cm grapevine wreath – £5 from Hobbycraft
  • Scissors – hydrangeas are not a woody plant so Ikea’s finest was sufficient, no need fro crack out the secateurs for this make
  • Ribbon or string so you can hang your wreath – I had some twine left over from tying up jam jar covers a couple of years ago but eBay is particularly good for this type of thing.

So you can see from my above little infographic that I have rated this an 8/10 difficulty level. It was not a quick thing to make and it was reasonably fiddly meaning my patience levels were tested hence the high rating. I realised I’m not the most dexterous person doing this make so be warned if you’re expecting to rustle this wreath up like as if you were a W.I. member, I can assure you that is not how this is going to feel – I don’t think the ladies of my local branch would have been too impressed with my language whilst making it! But you do end up with a very pretty wreath so it’s totally worth it!

My top tip is to either cover your floor with a sheet or some plastic as the hydrangea pollen gets everywhere! I did mine when the weather was still nice(ish) so I sat outside to make mine.

How to make your wreath:

1. Firstly attac your string to the wreath.  How long you leave it depends on where and how you want to hang it. I left mine about 60cm.  Bundle it up and keep it out of the way of what you’re doing.

2. Next the wire needs to be secured to the wreath. Do this by tying it in a double knot around your starting place and then wrapping it around at least 3 times to secure it. Don’t be shy with the wire, it wont snap and you need to make sure it’s pulled nice and tight otherwise it’ll sag later and the flowers you so carefully attached could fall off. Trim the shorter end of the knot and then tuck it into the wreath so you don’t poke yourself with it. As for your starting place, there’s no wrong or right place, but I’d suggest starting on one of the sides rather than the bow top or the pointed bottom as these are the trickiest areas. You also mustn’t cut the wire at any point as you’ll need to repeat this step again if you do and that’ll get trickier with the more flowers you add.

3. Now onto the main attraction, the flowers! Instead of using the whole hydrangea head, I cut it up into smaller pieces. The wreath I used wasn’t huge so I thought the bigger heads would look a bit daft, and also it would have made it incredibly expensive if if I’d done that. One thing to bear in mind is to try and keep the stems as long as you can because these are what you’ll be using to attach the flowers to the wreath. Lay your first piece of hydrangea against the wreath and the use the wire reel to wrap it around the flower stem two or three times tightly so it’s well attached to the wreath.

4. Continue adding the flowers trying to cover up the stems of the previous ones as you go, all the time using the wire to securely attach them to the wreath. You don’t need to worry too much about touching the hydrangeas, they are reasonably hardy and if you damage a couple of the petals it doesn’t have too much of an impact on the overall look of the wreath as it’s going to eventually dry out anyway. Wrapping the wire around is the bit I found the hardest and I found resting it on the table made it easier to keep passing the reel through.  I didn’t cover the back of the wreath but the aim is to try and make sure you can’t see the grapevine when it’s hanging so you’ll need keep checking that it’s well covered which isn’t too hard thankfully based on the bobbly nature of the heads.

5. Once the wreath has been entirely covered and you’ve placed your last flower, you need to secure the wire. Do this by wrapping the wire around the last piece a couple more times and then cutting the wire with around a 30cm wire tail.  Tuck the tail in between some of the wire you’ve already wrapped around and then secure with a triple knot to make sure it’s well and truly secure (tie another knot if you feel it needs it!) and then cut the tail off leaving a couple of cms to tuck into the wreath.

6. Nearly done! You should take this opportunity to stand back from the wreath to check you’re happy with how it looks.  You might think it needs a trim on one side, or like me you might think the bottom of your heart isn’t pointy enough and needs another bit adding in to enhance it. Be careful about cutting too much off though – you can’t go back once you’ve done it!  I found that hanging it up and stepping back helped me get perspective on it. I also took a picture on my phone and looked at it that way which helped me see how looked.

7. Now’s the time to enjoy your handiwork! Unravel the string at the top (if you haven’t already) and hang it wherever you like. The UK is not known for it’s particularly humid conditions so I didn’t hang it in a special place to dry out but it should be indoors as it won’t survive wind and rain (which we have plenty of!). It’s currently attached to the wrought iron bannisters on my staircase. But I used my neighbour’s garden shed to take my finished pic as I loved the contrast of the chippy paint and the pretty flowers.

I am really pleased with how it turned out and even though it wasn’t the easiest of makes, it was well worth it and I love how pretty it looks hanging in my lounge. I’ll update this blog post with a new pic in a few weeks once it’s completely dried out.

I’d love to hear everyone’s feedback on it and whether or not anyone has ever tried to make their own wreath?

I’ll be making a Christmas one using an oasis wreath in a few weeks to hang outside over the festive period so if you enjoy this one, be sure to let me know and I’ll do another post on that.

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