DIY Handmade Valentine's Day Flower Wreath

 
 

Although I'm not a huge supporter of Hallmark holidays, Valentine's Day gives me another reason to spread love and make stuff! I agree that we should love love, kindness, and appreciation every day of the year, especially to those we care about, but I think the world could use another reminder, right? And for all of us DIYers, there's a bounty of Valentine's Day crafts to choose from: crafty cards, adorable letter boxes, red baked goods, and, of course, anything flowers!

For Christmas, my aunt gave me a Wreath Recipe book, on how to gather supplies for and assemble seasonal wreaths and other floral arrangements. So, last Sunday morning, while most people in the US woke up excited to watch the Super Bowl, I woke up eager to pick out flowers for this project at my local farmers market! By the time the Super Bowl started, I couldn't really care less about the game or even the commercials. My roommates can vouch that I spent the first quarter of the game on the floor,assembling and photographing my very first floral wreath.

The older I get, the more happiness I get from little things, especially flowers (and succulents and all types of plants)! FYI, the flowers-happiness correlation is scientifically supported by Harvard researchers. I love going to my neighborhood's farmers market and just girly-ing out at how pretty and dainty the different seasonal and local choices are. I recently discovered San Francisco's Flower Mart in SOMA, a paradise for anyone who loves flowers! As hippie as this sounds, flowers are a small reminder of the intricate and beautiful perfection that nature gifts us, a wonderful reminder that leaves me with humility, contentment, and joy. 

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I'm just gonna preach for a hot second: don't waste time waiting for someone else to give you flowers just once a year. Why? First, flowers bring so much joy, so once a year is not enough! Second, (at risk of sounding very #independentwoman #dontneednoman), don't rely on anyone but yourself for your own happiness. If flowers make you happy, you should get some for yourself, whenever you please! My good friend Sam recently shared this quote with me, which I think is kind of relevant and is probably why I'm rambling about this:

i.e. Be the best person you can be, and be that person for yourself and not for anyone else. Love yourself, embody that love, and you'll naturally radiate love in the world!

And by love yourself, I mean: get yourself some flowers and brighten your own day! Make a floral wreath for yourself, your friends and family, and/or your lovers,  and in that order. 

Things you will need:

  • Single wire frame, or a makeshift ring of a durable material (e.g. plastic, wire, honeysuckle)
  • Paddle wire, or rubber bands
  • Flowers and leaves
  • Scissors
  • String (optional)

I made my frame out of an old fake flower stem I had lying around!

Instructions

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  1. Trim your flowers into smaller sections and/or sprigs.
  2. Assemble little bunches that look pretty to you!
    Arrange your bundles roughly in the circular shape and size of your frame on your floor/table to see what your wreath will look like as a whole, and create your bunches based on what you think will look best with other bunches.
  3. Holding a bunch against your circular frame, use paddle wire or a rubber band to secure the bunch to the frame.
    1. To secure with a rubberband, hook one loop end of the rubber band over one stem. Then, wrap the rubber band around the frame and all the stems in the bundle, and hook the other loop end on a stem to secure.
  4. Repeat step 3 for all your remaining bunches, covering the stems of the previous bunch.
  5. For the last bunch, tuck the end under the first bunch. This one might require a little more patience!
  6. Tuck and attach any additional stems and sprigs, or prune a little, to your wreath to perfect the design. 
  7. (Optional) If desired, tie a string to the top of your wreath to hang, like from a window!
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For my winter wreaths, I used bay leaves (which you can later dry and cook with!), anemones (which don't last long, because they get very thirsty when cut), and some other flower whose name I cannot remember (fail)! 

I managed to sneak away from the Super Bowl during a commercial break to do a photoshoot of my wreath on the fire escape in the day's last few minutes of natural lighting.

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However, I probably will move my wreath to hang in my window inside instead of leaving it on my fire escape, where it could be a safety hazard and where I can't enjoy it every day!

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I do need to read up more on how to pick (and recognize) flowers that last and dry well in wreaths, as I think some of mine may wilt soon. But, more expertise will come with more practice and time, and I'm pretty pleased with my first attempt! Thanks to my aunt for inspiring this project!