Saturday, 12 December 2009

Zero Waste(ish) Christmas Decorations...Pine Cones...

This week my mum, me and the head gardener at the National Trust place I volunteer at made some Christmas decorations for the house. Because it's a historical house everything has to be authentic, so no tinsel! We made holly wreaths for the doors and some ivy garlands, but some of the other volunteers made flower arrangements, holly garlands, mistletoe balls and dried orange and cinnamon ornaments to go on the Christmas trees (there are 3 - the biggest is 25 foot!!). Sadly, you aren't allowed to take photos inside, but there's one from the local paper to advertise the event so you get an idea....

To make the wreaths we made some weaved hoops out of twigs then we raked some moss off the lawn, tied big handfuls round and round the hoop till it was covered really well, then stuck lots of holly into it! It was really lovely to make them in such a traditional way and to know that all the materials came from the garden (and that the hoops would be kept to reuse next year and the holly would go into the compost bin).

Mum was so inspired she decided to make one at home! We're going to use holly and fir from our garden, but she couldn't be dissuaded from buying some of that green oasis that florists use as a base instead of some nice twigs and moss (even when I offered to make the base myself and even after a heated 'discussion' in the middle of Wilkinson's!) Ahh well, I suppose it's better than buying a completely plastic wreath, and she says she's going to reuse the oasis each year to make her Christmas wreath, but I know her and as soon as it starts looking tatty it'll go in the bin (cue another 'discussion' here!)...I'm just disappointed I suppose because we've seen how easy it is to make a more natural version for free but she refuses to use it!

Anyway, we also made a LOT of ivy garlands, which involves hand sewing individual ivy leaves onto a strip of fabric! They look really gorgeous though and are also very traditional and very biodegradable! The house looks lovely for it's Christmas opening and I have lots of inspiration for when I have my own house to decorate! The ivy garland was inspired by this TV programme, which is actually filmed quite near where I live, The Victorian Farm, Christmas specials.

After being all inspired and christmassy I also made a Christmas tree decoration. I have a little tree in my room each year and make it a new decoration each year. I took a pine cone from my national trust garden - they have massive redwoods down each side of the driveway leading up to the house, they're beautiful - washed it, dried it, tied a slipknot in a piece of ribbon from my ribbon jar and stuck the stem of the cone into the knot before pulling it tight all the way, then tied a bow with the ends of the ribbon and wrote in biro the name of the place and the year so i can remember when I'm old where it came from. I'm still debating whether to glitterfy it a bit.

To glitter or not to glitter, that is the question?!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for visiting!

You can also find me on Twitter @secondhandsusie and Facebook