6 December 2012

Thrifty Thursday

Wow .... again, where has this week gone? The days are going by so fast and I have to confess to feeling rather left behind in the old Christmas decorations department at the moment because although I have my tree, I haven't decorated it yet because I promised my daughter she could help me decorate it when she gets back from Bristol. I always have a real Christmas tree. I love the smell of the pine and I always think they look fabulous. I bought my tree yesterday, basically because my local nursery only has a limited supply and I have learnt from past experience that if you leave it until the last minute all the nice ones have gone. 

A few years ago, I ended up with one of the last trees at the nursery. I had very little money that Christmas and things were very tight but lets face it Christmas isn't the same without a tree. Anyway, I managed to persuade the nursery owner that I would be doing him a favour taking it off his hands and I got it for a ridiculously cheap price. I was ecstatic but the poor tree was terribly bedraggled and very lopsided so I had to give it a haircut to make it even remotely resemble a Christmas tree. I was left with a whole pile of branches after the short, back and sides and wanted to do something with them rather than just throw them out. 

Each year, I also like to have a festive wreath on my front door but in the shops they are so expensive and that year I couldn't really afford one and I certainly couldn't justify wasting £10-£15 for something that will basically be compost by twelfth night. So, I this is how I came to use up the branches from my poor, bedraggled Christmas tree. I went to Trago Mills, my local fabulous buy-anything-really-cheaply-bargain shop and I bought a metal wreath base ...... I think it cost me about 25p. I went out into my field and scraped together some moss from the bank and wired it onto the wreath using some garden wire I had in my shed. I grabbed my scissors and managed to find some holly and some other greenery in the bushes down the edge of my field which I also wired onto the wreath to add a bit of texture and interest. A couple of pine cones and my wreath was complete. It was a huge success and I loved the fact that it had only cost me 25p.

Now, each year, I do exactly the same thing. When I get my Christmas tree home, I trim off 2 or 3 branches from the underside of the tree or from the back where is won't be seen and I use it to make the wreath that goes on my front door. I even use the same metal wreath base. On twelfth night, I take off all the moss and foliage and put them on the compost heap and put the base back in the box with my Christmas decorations ready for the next year.

Ta da ..... here is this years offering. The ribbon is left over from the chandelier crystals I customised a few weeks ago, the baubles and fake berries are things I have saved over the years and everything else is, once again, from my field. This year, I also bought another wreath to put on my gate from a friend nearby who makes them. I only put my gate and fence up this year and it was looking a bit bare and in desperate need of brightening up. Her wreaths are lovely and only £5 which was a total bargain and I always prefer to buy from local crafters if I possibly can. I will also be able to use the metal wreath base next year to create an extra wreath for my gate to match the one I do for the door :-)


  1. I like that.Must get into the spirit of Christmas,anytime now would be ideal i think x

  2. That looks lovely, much nicer than a mass produced, shop bought version.

  3. I like the challenge of making my own Christmas decorations every year - and your wreaths have turned out very well - I don't generally start till the week before Christmas as I soon get fed up the dropping needles etc.

  4. p.s. I noticed that you signed up for NaNoWroMo this year - did you manage to finish. I joined for the first time and thoroughly enjoyed the experience managing to finish in three weeks - I was absolutely exhausted by the end of it though- my poor brain isn't used to all that creative thinking.

  5. Yes I managed to finish it ...... just. With about 2 and a half minutes to spare :-)