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Contemporary Winter Wreath

Winter white is on-trend and so very elegant. In this how-to video Leanne creates a gorgeous contemporary wreath using bold green evergreens combined with dried and bleached oak leaves and hanging amaranthus. An accent of color shifted conifer cones completes the design. Hung on a front door, this wreath says “welcome to my home for the holidays”. Enjoy!

Video Transcription

Welcome to the Flowerschool.com video library. I'm Leanne Kesler, Director of the Floral Design Institute and today I'm here to share with you a fabulous contemporary winter wreath. The base, a wire frame. This one a fabulous oval. They come in different shapes and sizes. You can pick your favorite. For the mechanics of attaching using paddle wire. Again, the endless spool makes it easy so you don't keep running out of ends. I like to use a 22 to a 24 gauge to make sure it's strong enough.

Then the materials that are organic, we've got the beautiful cypress and I've just taken that and cut it down into smaller pieces. You want them to be similar in size. You want to take a little bit of care as you cut them apart. Then some of the new returning old, but it's new again, preserved foliage. These are the oak leaves that are preserved and bleached, so they'll hold so well, look gorgeous throughout the season. Again, just cutting them down approximately the same size so that you're ready to work. For enhancing, preserved amaranthus. The hanging amaranthus is so lovely. Again, it's preserved and bleached so it will hold really well.

Once you have all your pieces, take your paddle wire and just attach it directly to the frame, twisting the wire. You just need a starting point. You want to make sure it's not going to come undone. Then gathering pieces in your hand. Some of the Hinoki cypress, a little bit of the leaves. Placing it together and then against the frame and then securing it by wrapping nice and tight. You don't want it to be loose because as the greens dehydrate they'll shrink a little bit. You want to make sure it's very tight so it'll stay secure.

Then take another cluster, keeping them roughly the same size. If you get bigger bunches and then smaller bunches, it'll end up getting funny shapes to it. So you want to keep the sizes the same, overlap them just a little bit and then come, lash it into place just wrapping securely. Two, three, four times, whatever feels comfortable to you and repeat. Cluster cluster, leaf, overlap and then twist.

As you get to the end, you can see where it will connect and you'll just lift and slide in the last bunch. So bundle number almost last overlapping, securing it. Then the last bundle lifting, placing it in and then wrapping it around tightly. To enhance I'm going to use the hanging amaranthus and then I'm also going to use some cones. These cones, I went ahead and enhanced with a little bit of Design Master Colortool and I didn't want it to be a solid color, so I did a combination of flat white, ivory and brilliant gold. Then just dusted it so it has a little bit of the brown still showing through. Then to place them in, starting with the hanging amaranthus, making sure there's no more loose pieces. A little bit of Oasis Floral Adhesive right on the end.

Let it begin to dry and then determining where I want it to hang down and then just feeding it right into the foliage base. Letting it drape, adding that beautiful movement coming through and coming back with the cones. Little bit of glue on the base. Let that begin to dry and again. Maybe one smaller ones. I'm just placing it in. Again, dividing by lifting the leaves apart and then inserting it. Repeat. Everything coming out from a central point up at the top, giving you a nice focal emphasis and then just hold until it sets.

To create this wreath you need a base, whatever shape you desire. Paddle wire to enhance the cones. A variety of Design Master, gold, flat white and ivory and I used six cones. A bit of the preserved and bleached hanging amaranthus, preserved and bleached oak, and then fresh Hinoki cypress. That's all you need.

With the addition of the preserved and bleached materials, it gives the wreath a very contemporary vibe. For more creative inspiration, other wreaths, you can find it on the video library at flowerschool.com. If you have questions, you can reach us there or pick up the telephone and give us a call at (503) 223-8089. So now it's your turn. What are you going to create this winter? Gather your materials, make a wreath. Be sure to take a photo. Post it on social media and tag Floral Design Institute. That way we all can see what you do as you do something you love.

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