Are you tired of the typical Christmas wreath you see hanging on everyone’s front doors this time of year? Are you looking for something special and unique? Well look no further because I have the most beautiful and unexpected Christmas wreath alternative for you. Come along and let me show you how to make this show-stopper!
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Thank you so very much for checking out my Christmas wreath alternative DIY!
What was my source of inspiration?
I get inspiration for projects often when I am sleeping. It can be inspiration for books I am writing, art that I am creating, house or garden projects, etc. Often it is my dreams that provide me with best ideas for projects, and this one was no different.
One night as sugar plums were dancing in my head, I dreamt of a beautiful old Father Christmas style hat. Rich cream colored fur on the trim, a deep burgundy material for the stocking cap, extra long in length and a creamy white fur pom pom on the end. It was so beautiful. I woke the next morning still remembering the beauty of the hat and wanted a reason to recreate it, but why? Was I just going to hang it somewhere in my house? Drape it over a chair? Then it occurred to me…it would make the perfect alternative to the traditional front door wreath!
So off to the fabric shop I ran…
We only have one fabric shop where I live and thankfully I found all that I needed there. I stuck with a more old world feel when it came to the materials and colors. I did not want a bright red hat, but rather a deeper burgundy and cream color scheme so that it would feel very classic, you know like Father Christmas or Old Saint Nick.
While I had a beautiful faux fur pom pom in my basket, it never did make it into my bag. It was too far to drive back, so I ordered one online. This was a blessing in disguise as the one pom pom at the fabric store was just over $17 and online I got 6 for $19. That made me very, very happy! So here are the materials you will need:
- 1 yard of burgundy fabric (minimum 40″ wide)
- 30 inches of 4″ wide cream colored faux fur trim
- 51 inches of bronzish gold cord
- 24 inches of gold embroidered 2″ wide trim (if you want your loop shorter you could get less)
- 1 faux fur cream colored pom pom
- Large floral pics with evergreens, pine cones, leaves, berries and round ornaments
- 3 large jingle bells
- Dazzling Metallics acrylic paint in Champagne, Rich Espresso, Pure Gold and Venetian Gold
- Thread, needle and sewing machine
- Glue gun and glue sticks
- Sponge brush and 1/2″ wide paint brush
- Oasis foam for stuffing the stocking
Step 1: Stocking cap and fur trim
Lay out your fabric and use white chalk or a fabric pen to draw a triangle with a 17″ base and a height of 39″.
Cut that triangle out.
Lay the triangle on top of the fabric and trace a second triangle and cut the second triangle out.
Lay the pieces on top of each other with the good sides on the inside. Pin and allow a 1/2″ seam on the two long sides of the fabric. Sew those pieces together.
Right side out the stocking cap (ie the good side of the fabric is on the outside). You may need a stick of some sort to poke out the end of the triangle as it is quite tight in that area.
Fold the fur in half, pin at the ends and sew a 1/2″ seam.
To attach the fur trim to the stocking cap, the good side of the fur should be facing the bad side of the stocking cap, pin and sew together allowing 1/2″ for the seam. This picture below will help.
Flip the fur over now so that the right side of the fur is showing.
Step 2: Fur Pom Pom
This was so simple. The pom poms came with one snap fastener attached so all I had to do was attach the other fastener to the end of the stocking cap.
I hand stitched it on as seen below and then snapped the pom pom on.
The wispiness of the fur pom pom really added to the old world look.
Step 3: Embroidered hanging loop
Fold the embroidered trim in half in a U shape. Make sure the good side of the trim is showing at all times.
Attach this ends of the loop to the middle of the back of the hat. I made the loop 12″ in height (ie half of 24″) as I wanted to see some of the trim above the greenery. You could also make it even longer and attach it tot the top of a door.
To attach the loop I used a sewing machine as it had to be secured strongly to be able to handle the weight of materials and the evergreens. Go back and forth several times to ensure it is attached securely.
Step 4: Antiquing jingle bells
As you will see in the photo, I had three very silver large jingle bells on white cords. I tried to order some old antique bells as shown in this link, but they would not arrive on time. I would suggest using them, but if you can’t find any like this, then antique newer looking ones like I did.
First I gave the bells a light sanding. Then I painted them solidly in gold acrylic paint with a sponge brush and allowed them to dry for 30 minutes.
Then I lightly dabbed on Rich Espresso acrylic paint and rubbed it in with a slightly dampened paper towel to achieve a mottled, aged look. Allow to dry for 2 hours.
Step 5: Attaching cords to jingle bells
Cut the cord in lengths of 11″, 17″ and 24″.
Unravel one end of the cord and push it through the hook on the jingle bell. Make sure the cord is fully wound on the long side of the cord.
Where the three individual pieces of the cord come out of the hook place hot glue around the full wound cord and then wrap the three pieces around as seen below.
When my cord was cut it revealed a white interior which did not look good so I simply dabbed on gold paint to cover the white interior.
Hot glue the ends of the three cords under the fur trim. My bells were evenly spaced 3 1/2″ apart from the bottom of the top jingle bell to top of the bottom jingle bell. I chose to glue them as it was faster. You could sew the ends of the cords under the fur trim as an alternative.
Step 6: Preparing evergreen picks
As you can see, the evergreen picks I found, had red oranment bobbles and very red berries. This would stand out in a bad way against the burgundy fabric so I painted the bobbles Dazzling Metallic acrylic paint Champagne color.
This color was so close to the color of the fur and just added a subtle richness to the evergreens rather than the bold red color they were previously.
The red berries were next and I lightly brushed on the Dazzling Metallics Rich Espresso. I also lightly painted the tips of the pine cones with the Rich Espresso. It also gave everything an aged feeling but it also gave it a little glitz.
Step 7: Stuffing the hat with evergreen boughs and picks
Hang the hat on the door with a wreath hook or clear suction cup hooks. It is important to do this part of the project in place as you want to ensure that you get the boughs properly placed.
First I stuff the widest part of the hat with oasis foam. I then added the two prepared evergreen picks. I tried having them stand up to give height but it just looked awkward. I bent the two large picks so that they hung over the edges of the hat and then stuffed the hat with pine and cedar. This part truly is a matter of personal preference, some will like it full, some will like it wispy, go with what makes you happy.
I am going to be very honest with you. The hardest part of this project was stuffing the hat with the boughs. It is a bit tricky because it can become very wild looking very easily. It can become top heavy and you lose all sight of the hat. So be careful. Enlist help. I asked my daughter to help me and one of us would steady the hat while the other stuffed.
Part way through this project, I wondered if I really had missed the mark, but now that it is up I am absolutely in love with it. It even won the praise of my kids!!! Woweee!!! Let me tell you that is not an easy thing to do.
Not sure if you have noticed, but I have some amazing Gift Guides up and I found so many unique items – here is a link to take you directly there. Or if you are looking for some new holiday decor, check out these beautiful items!
Lastly I have joined up with Marie, Marieza and Melba for this blog hop and I hope you will check them out…
Thanks for following along with this project. If you liked what you saw, please don’t forget to subscribe at the bottom of the page and also to leave me a comment!