Wednesday, November 23, 2011

phoning it in: Christmas wreath

How we decided to decorate our porch for Christmas determined the wreath. And yes, we've already decorated and we've been lighting up the place for two weeks now. I have officially become one of those people I used to hate (although, not quite as bad as our neighbours whose house looks like a Santa sleigh runway).

Of the people on our block who have added lights (Santa headquarters included), everything looks rather... deconstructed during the day. The lights are strung up haphazardly all over the place with extension cords and timer plugs placed dead centre of their house. Thank goodness for the snow, in some respects, which hides the spiderweb of cords strung out on their lawns. During the day, the magic that is Christmas is completely lost and houses look like the insides of machines. So I wanted decorations that would look just as nice during the day as they do at night.

Since I couldn't find anything in pink (damn! Our house looks so good in pink!), I decided on classic red and green. Everyone does blue and white and twinkly icicles now, right? They're no longer unique and modern and out-of-the-box. With red and green, I could do a little take on holly and berries, using fake greenery and red lights. The branches would hide the cords of the lights and what bulbs are seen during the day would look like dark red berries leftover from fall. It was sort of on a whim (read: they were cheap) that I decided to add red bows as well. They were a surprisingly fortunate addition because I could use them to secure loose ends and cover tags and joining plugs. Any bows that were left, I tied to the bare branches of our tree. Bows on bare trees are super cute.

So with all this greenery and faux berries, I couldn't put up another wimpy wreath. And by 'wimpy' I mean skinny because (let's face it) most of my wreathes have been in that category. No, I wanted a big beefy leafy wreath with a proper hanger and berries and bows.

I really didn't get around to looking for one properly. I was honestly just going to buy it, premade. I was kind of exhausted with trying to come up with ways to do it myself, and by the time I fiddled around with everything, I figured I could have just bought it and been done with it. Besides, I have to make a bazillion decorations before December. I have enough to do for Christmas this year.

We decided it might be fun to do some cheesy Christmas cards, so we found ourselves at Value Village rifling around for Christmas sweaters and vests. That place is a treasure trove for Christmas decorations, just so you know. If you were to be looking. They had a lot of wreathes to choose from. After carrying around a $6.99 wreath that I thought would be okay (once I took all the old and damaged junk off of it), I discovered this gem.


The branches were squished down at the time, so I could see how it went unnoticed. I liked the blue-ish tinge (since our door is blue) and it was huge (the biggest in the store), and plain (no "fixing" required). And did I mention it was $3.99? It was perfect.

I found a few other things to possibly go on my wreath:


Plastic mistletoe looking garland ($1.99). Anything Christmas-y and plastic makes me think of my gram. As soon as I see that stuff, I think, "vintage!!" and feel the need to buy.


Sparkly golden apples ($1.99 along with some other decorations that are actually pretty nice, too) cuz I want some gold out there big time and apples, why not?

The rest was found at home in my (junky) craft supplies box:


Feathers leftover from my wrapped feather gel pens. I'm kinda squealing over the feathers. I really love this nontraditional addition! And they're just tucked in. No gluing or tying required!


Bright green ribbon tied into bows (where's red when you really need it, right?).

A bit of tucking, a bit of twisting, and this is what I came out with:


I'm really pleased with it. It adds just the right amount of oompf to the door and works really well with everything else (without being too matchy-matchy). The best part is that none of these additions are permanently attached so I can easily change them out to make the wreath look completely different. In fact, take the Christmas colours off, add some pinecones and snowflakes and bam! January, "wintery" wreath. Huzzah! Having a changeable wreath will definitely be both time and money saving in the long run!