Last year I went to a festive floral workshop and made my first ever Christmas door wreath. I actually really enjoyed the whole process (mulled wine and Quality Street on tap helped with the creativity obviously).
I took a fairly minimalist approach (also see, didn’t have a clue what I was doing) with lots of the “base” moss on show, eucalyptus, pheasant feathers and a few scattered white stars.
This year I decided to have a bash at a full on garland for my stairs complete with lots of hydrangea, foliage and of course even more feathers. Florist Karen from Passion For Flowers assured me it was a fairly straight forward process and as we were looking for a combined editorial project with Joules, this seemed like the perfect how-to feature to share with our readers. Of course you don’t have to use the garland for your stairs at all – it would look equally as epic down the centre of your dining room or kitchen table, they make such a statement absolutely no other decor would be required for the 25th.
Those of you that have been following my posts will know that I’m almost 6 months pregnant, and that in general, I still think the current specific maternity fashion offering is poor. Aside from existing wardrobe items and a new pair of jeans, I’ve made a conscious effort to only purchase a few transitional pieces that make me feel confident and that I can also wear post arrival of Mabel’s new little sister.
Behind The Scenes With All The Lovely Clothes
I’ve had my eye on the Langham Ankle Boots in grey forever, and the fact they are not too high means I can wear them all day in comfort (do excuse the cankles, by lunchtime my lower leg water retention is quite spectacular). I have become very much a regular blazer wearer since 20 weeks, they make for a neat and sleek silhouette and I feel as though I have made an effort. I pair the Peyton Navy Tweed Long-Line Blazer with the aforementioned jeans or a stretchy dress/tunic with opaque tights or leggings. The Peyton is currently £139 reduced from £199 by the way – well worth the investment and I like the fact the longer length means it covers my ever expanding lower back and soon to be expanding backside (based on the the fact it’s nearly December, which means all the Terry’s Chocolate orange, which I am NOT sharing).
I chose the Isabella Knitted Jacquard Tunic because I liked the thick printed fabric and pockets. I went for a size larger than I would normally take and it accommodates my bump really well… Oh I’m sorry, am I still taking about clothes? I better tell you about how to actually make the garland hadn’t I.
How To Make A DIY Festive Christmas Garland
1. Purchase An Oasis Netted Garland
You can buy these in 2.6 metre lengths from Amazon or a florist. Alternatively you could make this yourself too – it is essentially chunks of oasis and netting put together much like a string of sausages, but seriously, can you be bothered? I couldn’t. I would prefer to spend that time demolishing the aforementioned chocolate orange.
Soak the garland briefly in water before using.
Also invest in some plastic cable ties as these are what you will use to tie your garland to your stairs.
2. Choose Your Flowers And Foliage.
Completely your call in terms of colours and textures but some have greater longevity than others, ask your florist for advice or look online before you commit to buy. I chose hydrangea and alliums which are fairly hardy – I also dotted in some Astrantia but on a large stalk with lots of heads as otherwise they can be a bit flimsy.
Start by sticking in your foliage to each oasis block, I find haphazardly works best for a more organic/undone vibe. I love eucalyptus for it’s pale green hue and wintery scent, I used eucalyptus parvii, berried eucalyptus and eucalyptus glaucus. Fir or ivy helps to bulk out the majority of the base and is budget friendly.
4. Add In Florals
Add in your flowers to each block amongst the greenery, I started with the larger hydrangea head per block and added in the smaller florals to fill in any gaps.
5. Prepare Your Stairs
To protect carpet from any potential drips I used old towels which I then removed once the garland was safely in place and the Oasis was damp rather than leaking down my bannister.
6. Tie On Your Garland
I started from the top of the banister down, applying the cable ties as I went, in-between every other oasis sausage and underneath foliage to hide the plastic.
7. Add Extra To Finish!
Once your garland is in place you can fill in any sparse areas with extra foliage or blooms. I also added my feathers once the garland was in place so I could create a certain look. You can maintain your garland’s freshness by spraying daily with water.
The final finishing flourish was of course my Mabel, who was determined to open the decorative “presents” and laughed her head off on queue when we called photographer Adam silly names. Oh, and we also bribed her with chocolate coins (can you detect a theme here? like mother like daughter…)
In some of the behind the scenes images Mabel is also wearing the Nell Star Fleece which has to be one of the most beautiful fur-lined children’s coats I have ever seen. I am wearing the Caldecott Padded Coat which is wonderfully warm and because I live in the country now, the Downton Premium Wellies. These wellies cover up chunky pregnancy calves like nothing else. Seriously, I’m tempted to wear them ALL the time.
Are you planning on making a door wreath or a garland this year? Do let me know if you have any questions on the how-to in the comments box below.
P.S EDIT: There is currently a 3 for 2 offer on children’s clothes at Joules
This feature has been sponsored by Joules, we only choose to collaborate with brands we love and want to recommend to our readers. All opinions are my own.