DIY wire Christmas wreath

How to Make a Real Wreath

My family and I are lucky enough to live in a very beautiful place.  Our home, in the middle of the Plumas National Forest, is scenic and full of wonderful things to do all year long.

One of my daughter’s favorite things to do at Christmas time is to cut a real tree.  Although she is in college, she made me promise to wait for her to return home so she could be a part of it. We all get bundled up and pull on our snow boots.  This year there was just a couple of inches of snow but the temp was about 37 degrees outside. Brrrrr.

We fill the thermos with cocoa and pack snacks for the outing and the hunt is on. This year I decided to bring along some wreath-making supplies and kill two birds with one stone.  While the family was searching for the perfect tree, I set up a little workbench on the tailgate of the truck and got to work making a wreath.

talegate wreath making

This is my kind of tailgating

Here’s what you’ll need to bring on your outing;

  • Wire hanger
  • Pruning clippers
  • Loppers or a small handsaw for larger branches
  • Spool of wire
  • Wire cutters

Start by cutting a few low hanging branches. I used a variety of pine, cedar, and manzanita for mine.

Tip: If you don’t have access to a national forest you can try asking your local tree farm or lot for the branches they trim off.

Form the wire hanger into a wreath shape.  I used a dry cleaner's hanger that had the cardboard tube on the bottom.  I removed it and crimped the two ends together.  I like that this wreath is a smaller size.  It makes the project go much faster and is the perfect size for a gift.

 

Next, I clip the branch tips into 8-inch lengths.

wreath, wire hanger

Cut greens

Take the wire and wrap it around the hanger at the top to anchor it.

Then bundle your greens together.  I layer pine, then cedar and finally a sprig of manzanita. Place this on your wireframe where you anchored the wire.

Wrap the bundle snugly three times.  Be careful not to pull too tight and break the wire.  (I’ve done that before.)

wreath, wire

wrap the bundle snugly around the wire ring.

Make your next bundle and place it about two inches from your last one. Wrap it snugly three times.

Keep doing this process and work your way around the wire frame.

wreath wire hanger

The last bundle can be a challenge.  Tuck it in close and wrap it so that you can’t tell where the last one ends and the first one began.  Give it a few extra wraps, cut the wire, and tuck in the loose end.

Now hold up your beautiful wreath and admire your work.  You can trim any greenery that is sticking out too long. If you have a sparse area, you can always tuck in and wire in a small bundle.

I add a bow to the top and this always helps hide the start/stop area.

I was able to make two wreaths before the fam came bounding back with the tree. It took about 15 minutes for each of them.

The girls are great models

The girls are great models

Now it’s time for cocoa and snacks, and of course a quick photo session.

 

wreath crown

"Let me straighten your crown!"

 

wreath crown

Silly Girls!

I just love how fresh the pine scent is.  My hands might get a little sappy but it’s worth it.  The truck smells amazing all the way home. My heart is full!

front door with wreath

 

I just love how it looks on my front door.  I finally feel ready for the holidays!

front door wit wreath

 

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wood sign Laundry room

Super Easy Laundry Room Sign

How cute is this?!?

I had the best time making this laundry room sign shaped like a clothespin. It was super easy, too! It only took a scrap of wood and a few simple tools.

Here's what you'll need:

1x12 pine board approximately 29 inches long
Handsaw Circular saw or band saw
Cordless Drill
Jigsaw or hole saw ( I used both)
Round file (Optional)
Sandpaper or an orbital sander
Pencil
Measuring tape
Straight edge or ruler
Stain in your favorite color (I used Special Walnut)
Chalk
Craft paint
Varnish
Hardware to hang it! ( Used two small eye hooks and some wire)

First, take your measuring tape and straight edge and mark your cut lines.  These aren't exact, down to the fraction of a hair!!! A 1x12 is actually 11 1/4 and I'm just not that particular about it being exactly PERFECT!

clothes pin measurements

I used a circular saw to cut the long lines on the outside.

Then I used a jigsaw to cut the notch on the short end of the clothespin.  I used my cordless drill to make a pilot hole for the football shape, then used the jigsaw to cut the rest of the way.  You could use a hole saw and just make this a circle like the other ones. I just liked how the football shape looked.  It looks just like a real clothespin! 🙂

Next, I used a hole saw to cut the other two holes.  One at 2 inches and the other one is 2.5 inches.

I then used the circular saw again to cut the inside legs of the clothespin. You could also use a band saw or jigsaw for this.

Clothes pin wall art

Check out my slippers! Sometimes a girl just needs to work in the garage with her slippers on. I guarantee that I still had lip gloss on though.

Finally, I used a round file to make the groove that runs the length of the clothespin.  You could skip this step and your pin would still look totally cute!

I used my orbital sander to smooth everything out then I was ready to stain.

After the stain dried....(The next day)  I used my lettering technique to transfer my words.

See Easy Lettering Technique That Doesn't Take a Vinyl Cutter.   So super easy that my kids make their own signs.

I used craft paint to paint in my lettering and let it dry. I did two coats of paint so it wouldn't look opaque.

The last step is to varnish. I used Varathane Polyurethane in semi-gloss. It goes on easy and cleans up with water. It's great for indoor and outdoor projects because it has a UV protector.

Ok, there's one more step; hanging hardware.

These are my absolute favorite!  The screws are small so they are great for projects that are made out of 1-inch material. You could also use eye hooks and some wire.

 

There!!! Perfection! And so cute! (I told you!)

There are lots of cute quotes you could use for variations.

Check out my tutorial on "Easy lettering technique that doesn't take a vinyl cutter"

I just love how it looks in my laundry room.

 

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