My Month…

Hello readers!

It’s that time again… the end of the month is nearing and I’m sharing my month in Instagram pictures (taken off Instagrid). You can see these pictures as they happen by following me on Instagram or Twitter but here’s the blow by blow…

  • Warming up for winter with my new mini hottie bottle and toes in rouge noir for the first toe tidy of winter (DIY of course!) 🙂
  • Decorating the tree.
  • Remember this wreath? – Bookmark the DIY post for next year’s wreath ideas…
  • The lake at Dunham Massey frozen over the week before Christmas in a cold snap, taken on a late afternoon deer-spotting walk with my sister and her boyfriend who were visiting.
  • A last minute gift purchase (Grapefruit body lotion for my Mum) and a Christmas manicure – It’s a seasonal tradition for my Mum, sister and I to get together the week before Christmas in Manchester for shopping, lunch and nails with Champagne 🙂
  • Chocolate bread and butter pudding in Carluccios on another shopping trip pre-Christmas, made with croissants… great idea for a future pudding dish.
  • My two cats supervising the last of the wrapping on Christmas eve, my new lip find – Stila’s lip stain in Acai crush (available at Boots) and my niece pushing her Daddy and Pete on the zip wire in the park when we visited Pete’s folks pre-Christmas.
  • Scouring my bookshelves back home for the books for this month’s book club – Little Women and Good Wives.
  • Christmas outfits… A Reiss oversized jumper dress, boots leggings and my GAP parka which I live in at the moment for Christmas eve, then some burgundy sparkle tweed topshop shorts with a Whistles blouse for Christmas day.
  • And lastly… the much requested earring shot (apologies for the lack of face to accompany it, I was in no fit state last night when writing this!) and my sleek and chic (if a wee bit short) bob.

I hope December has been kind to you all and you’re excited about starting the New Year – You should be – I’ve got lots in store!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Florence’s Florals: A DIY Christmas Berry Wreath

Good afternoon readers!

This afternoon we have part 2 of Florence’s Festive Florals with Becky from Blossom. It’s the second of her 2 wreath tutorials, this one is still rustic but more traditional and includes living elements, hence us deciding to post it closer to Christmas – it will last through the holidays if made this weekend. Enjoy!

Hello again, and welcome to version 2 of the festive wreath tutorial. If you haven’t already seen the rustic winter owl wreath, pop over and have a look, as the principles for making them both are identical. I’ve used fresh materials in this version which will look good for a couple of weeks if you keep it somewhere cool. Please don’t be put off by the amount of text below, once you’ve mastered how to wire each piece, it really is very easy. And once again, please remember that there is no right or wrong addition to a wreath. You can add as little or as much as you want, of whatever takes your fancy.

What I used:

  • Large ready made willow wreath
  • Fresh ivy trails
  • 2 x stems Ilex verticillata ‘Winter Gold’ – this is also available in bright red from all good florists
  • 8 x natural pine cones
  • 3 x whole dried oranges
  • 6 – 9 x dried orange slices
  • 9 x cinnamon sticks
  • Natural raffia
  • Medium – thick gauge florist stub wires

What to do:
1. Wrap pieces of trailing ivy around and through the wreath. Secure it by tucking into the gaps in the wreath frame.

2. Wire each item that you want to attach to your wreath. You may find it easier to wire everything first and attach the pieces to the wreath afterwards.

  • To wire the Ilex: Cut each piece of Ilex down to approximately 2 cm below the lowest branch of berries. Fold a piece of wire in half to form a hair pin shape and hold it against the base of the piece of Ilex. Wrap one half of the wire around the base of the stem and the other end of the wire to secure.
  • To wire the pine cones & whole oranges: Take a single piece of stub wire and dig the middle part of the wire in between the scales at the base of the cone (the fatter end), pull each end of the wire down, and twist them together as close to the bottom of the cone as possible. Pull each end of the wire back together and straighten. In floristry terms this is called a ‘double leg mount’ – the two stems of the wire are known as ‘legs’.

Use the same principle to wire the whole dried oranges, piercing the base of the fruit with the wire.

  • To wire the orange slices: Group 2 or 3 dried orange slices together, overlapping them so that you can see the segments of each slice. Pierce through both of the slices at the base, pull each end of the wire down and twist the wires together to secure the slices.
  • To wire the cinnamon: Make 3 bundles of cinnamon sticks by wrapping a wire around the middle of 3 sticks and twisting the wires together. Don’t worry if the wire feels quite loose, you can secure the cinnamon by using a piece of raffia to wrap over and around the wire. It not only secures the bundle, it also hides the wire in your display. Tie the raffia in a bow or knot on the top of the bundle (the opposite side to the twisted wire).

3. You can now attach each individual piece to your wreath by pushing the wires through the gaps in the wreath and twisting them together at the back of the wreath to secure. Tuck the excess ends of wire back into the back of the wreath so they don’t scratch your front door.

4. Tie a big bow using the raffia and pierce through the back of the bow with a wire. With the bow at the centre of the wire, pull the two ends of wire together and twist together. Use the wire legs to attach the bow to your wreath in the same way you’ve attached everything else.

5. If you need to create a hook to hang your wreath from, you can use a piece of raffia or a piece of wire.

I’ll be on hand later to answer any questions. Just leave a comment below 🙂

Thank you Becky!

Did you have a go at last week’s wreath, or will you be attempting this one – perhaps this is more up your ‘Christmas Street’?

Do leave a comment if you love it, or if you have any questions as Becky said – Becky will be back in the New Year with more Florence’s Florals!

Love,
Rebecca
xo

Florence’s Florals: A DIY Christmas wreath from Blossom

This morning I’m super excited as I get to introduce another regular columnist… My good friend Becky Hay from Blossom, florist extraordinaire and lovely lady. I’ve also been dying to share this DIY Becky created for Florence Finds last Thursday… I had a lovely day in the shop with mince pies and Michael Buble in the background so I really hope this inspires some of you to get creative and make your own DIY Christmas wreath.

While we’re at it, I’d like to congratulate Becky, Aisling and the team at Blossom as they have just won an award for the Best North West florist in the Wedding Industry awards! Of course I know that already. 😉


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

Today’s wreath is absolutely gorgeous… A rustic take on Christmas decor, complete with wildlife and a hint of snow white glitz, I’m considering ditching my regular wreath for a DIY effort. I wanted to inspire those of you looking for something different as it’s a DIY and it’s also a keeper… With no living parts, you can pack this one away and bring it out year after year.

Take it away Becky!

Hi everyone, I’m very honoured to have been invited to contribute to Florence’s Florals. This is the first of two festive wreath tutorials, both are made using a shop bought willow wreath base which are quite easy to come by and have been created to inspire you rather than dictate to you. When it comes to door wreaths, literally anything goes, so go and collect whatever you can lay your hands on and get creative.

Pre made wreaths are available in all sorts of shapes and materials. The principle described below can be used to attach extra items to any wreath you fancy as long as you can push a wire through the main body of the wreath.

What we used:

  • Ready made white washed willow wreath (try saying that after a night out!)
  • Contorted willow
  • Birch twigs
  • White pine cones (Natural cones will do the job just as well or you can spray them white using a can of spray paint)


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

  • Larch cones still on the branch
  • Medium – thick gauge florist stub wire (available from all good Florists and Garden Centres)
  • White owl decoration
  • Organza ribbon

What to do:
1. Cut small pieces of willow and birch twigs and poke through the gaps in the wreath until they feel secure.
(If your wreath has large gaps, you may need to use more twigs or a wire to hold sections of twig in place.)
Keep adding more twigs until you get the fullness you want.


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

2. Wiring the large cones: Take a single piece of stub wire and dig the middle part of the wire in between the scales at the base of the cone (the fatter end), pull each end of the wire down, and twist them together as close to the bottom of the cone as possible. Pull each end of the wire back together and straighten. In floristry terms this is called a ‘double leg mount’ – the two stems of the wire are known as ‘legs’. Attach the cone to your wreath by placing each ‘leg’ of wire through a gap in your wreath and twisting them together at the back of the wreath to secure. Tuck the excess ends of wire back into the back of the wreath so they don’t scratch your front door.


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

This principle can be used to attach absolutely anything to your wreath – bunches of foliage, feathers, dried flowers, fresh flowers, berries, and anything else you can find in your garden or while out for a walk.

3. Next, take the sections of Larch branch and arrange amongst the large cones. I secured my two bits in place by using a single wire, folded into a hairpin shape, pinning the larch in place and twisting each ‘leg’ of the haipin wire together at the back of the wreath and pushing the ends back into the wreath as you did for the cones.


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

4. The owl decoration I used already had a clip on it but you can use any decoration as long as you can manage to secure a wire through the base of it to then secure it to your wreath.


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

5. Finally, I made a 6 loop bow using the organza ribbon. There’s a detailed tutorial on one of those here. I used a stub wire to gather the centre of my bow which I then used to push through the wreath and secure at the back of the wreath, as decribed for attaching the cones. Use a separate piece of ribbon looped through the back of the wreath to hang it from.


Image Credit: Rebecca Norris for Florence Finds

If you have any questions, just leave a comment below and I’ll try to get back to you asap.

Gorgeous no?

I love the winter wonderland feel complete with feathered friend, it just looks magical. I usually entwine a set of battery powered lights into my wreath and I think they would look great in this one too.

Next week, Becky will be doing a completely different wreath, closer to Christmas because it includes living elements and you’re all going to love it! Thank you Becky!

See you then,
Love
Rebecca
xo

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