I can’t resist sharing this excellent guide to making an eco-friendly, plastic and waste-free Christmas wreath. It may be a little bit short notice for you this festive season, but if you are in Covid constraints like us, then you may be glad for a creative venture and some foraging in your local neighbourhood green spaces, or even your garden. In any event, this is a great idea for nature crafting in the winter months. You’ll find it a useful skill to practice and the component base can be re-used for years to come, and at other times of year, while the rest can be put in your green waste bin or compost.
The main post and instructions is shamelessly shared from the very groovy Environment Centre in York. Here is the link again in full :
I hope you have a go at the wreath. Don’t be put off if your first effort is a little wonky – it takes some practice. Longer, bendy stems make it easier for sure but are hard to come by. (Professional willow-weavers use specially-grown coppiced willow; long straight and thin.) If you can only find shorter prunings of willow, dogwood etc my top tip is maybe try a smaller diameter wreath first.
The Ecotherapy post advises soaking your base material but I find that it works ok with fresh stems as long as they are thin, say 5mm or so at the butt end. For a neater front face, try to always weave your stems the same way eg anticlockwise and with the ‘butt’ of each stem at the back. Think of a clock and start weaving each new stem a couple of places further round from the previous.
Incidentally I highly recommend the website for St Nicks Eco Centre as they have lots of projects going on and when things return to less-challenging times it is a cool place to visit in York for green geeks like me. Better still, attend one of their workshops or volunteer days. I’m sure that by signing up to the St Nicks mailing list they will let us know when face to face events are back, but there are some nice do-at-home activities such as this one to try in the meantime. Now get your secateurs and go have fun!