December 04, 2012

Decorating for Christmas with nature

Truth to be told, I like to keep Christmas decorations pretty simple, too many festive bits and bobs on every surface, every deck swagged and sparkling and I start to feel...slightly suffocated. Which is putting it a tad over dramatically, but you know that feeling at Christmas of just too much stuff everywhere? Inevitably made worse the media screeching "spendspendspend", "cyber-monday" blah blah bleugh!

But here is the paradox, I absolutely love Christmas, the feeling of anticipation, feasting, family, gratitude, the whole proper works. I love the celebration of so much that is important to me, plus the depths of winter really needs a bit of general whooping up and fun, no?

So this year I am avoiding the 'drowninginbaubles' feeling by two very conscious little decisions: to keep the decorating all about bringing the outside in and lighting candles, and keeping the gift giving as full of handmade goodness as possible (but not by my hands!). It already feels a lot less frenzied and more considered, which I am liking.

This last weekend, it was about bringing some winter nature indoors by making wreaths from ivy, twigs and various seedheads and weeds foraged from the garden and riverbank.




The wreaths I like best are quite skinny and sparse, slightly quirky and unexpected, and what is available outside around here is actually just right for just these kind of wreaths, so I'm a happy wreath-hugger!


It was just a matter of cutting down some withies from a wild shrub that grows in our woodland area of the garden, creating a base by bending them into circles and tying with twine, and sticking reed seed-heads from the local river through the gaps in the wreath base. Embarrassingly straight forward. The little round seedheads  (the ones that are a nightmare in dogs' fur), are so sticky you can just throw them at the wreath and they stay in place. I squirted some white paint spray at some of them as you can see. Finish off with a bit of ribbon. I know it lacks colour and sparkle, but I really seriously like this one in its understated but slightly boho, Anthro-ish nonchalance. It really feels like we have a bit of riverbank goodness in our home. I think next year I will make this as an autumn wreath.




The other one I made from totally foraged material is totally sprayed white. I think I am definitely having a white christmas this year, snow or not!




More bits of garden shrubbery with hogweed seedheads. It is a bit eccentric but I love its snowy ice-queenishness. Long live the quirky wreath!

So easy to make as before.





I made two other little wreaths for table centres/candle holders but they were using up some flowers from a one-off winter bouquet I made for someone recently - I like them but not as much as my totally foraged ones!





I have also got some white painted sticks in a vase, ready to make a mini decorated tree, but still finding the right decorations for it. That will have to wait.


20 comments:

  1. This is why I LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog. Sinead x

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    1. Blog love is mutual! One day we shall have a coffee in Dublin and talk flowers!:)

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  2. just stunning. i particularly like the snowflake looking ones. i'm with you on the natural decor too. i need to learn to make wreaths.

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  3. So pretty, so calm. Just what i needed. Xoxo

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  4. I love the white seed heads! I think I need to learn the art of foraging ; )

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    1. The art and the etiquitte - it is quite controversial! x

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  5. Charming. An antidote to the glitter I stand in all day.

    xo Jane.

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  6. I love the ice-queenishness of the sprayed heads too. How beautiful and delicate. My spell-checker is not happy with that queenishness business. Not happy at all!! But I think it's a fab word!

    Sarahx

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  7. Those alliums are brilliant! They really look like snowflakes! I love how nature repeats itself in unexpected places :)

    I have been thinking of the same thing of late. I am tired of looking at all my holiday stuff that I carted from the US. I have been thinking disposable decor is definitely the way to go- changes every year and no need for storage! Love it!

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    1. They look so like alliums don't they, and allium heads would be fabulous, these ones are actually hogweed seedheads from our riverbank.

      Less is more I am deciding this year, just stuff we really like or is just too sentimental to do without! x

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  8. I love your wreathes. It's such fun experimenting isn't it? Wreath making is one of the things that makes me really happy, I often have a quirky, seasonal one up all through the year. Jane xx

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    1. I love the experimenting too - often the unlikely things look the best!

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  9. Stunning simplicity, perfect makes for Wild Acre Belinda.X

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  10. I love your white hogweed Belinda. I too have the tension between loving the family and mid winter celebration of Christmas and a horror of the consumer frenzy and the clamour to create a false perfection. Your decorations have just the right simplicity. Thank you. I might well be doing this.

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  11. I am trying to do this too ... keeping things simple. I have trailing ivies and hyacinths and lots of white candles, a twiggy tree which will be sparsely decorated, and not much else.

    Your wreaths are beautiful Belinda :D

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