The holiday period will soon be upon us, so how about making a pine cone wreath to celebrate the season. A pine cone wreath can be hung on a door, placed flat on a dining room table or buffet as a centerpiece, or used in place of a picture or mirror over a fireplace during the Winter months. Small pine cone wreaths can even be used as decorative candle stick bases. In this post you’ll see how really easy it is to make a wreath that you will have for years; they also make great gifts for friends, relatives and neighbors. Supplies needed to make the wreath…
(1) A wire wreath frame (bought at craft stores everywhere; mine was 14 inches wide)
(2) New freshly fallen pine cones (not grayed and weathered ones that fell a previous year)
(3) florist wire (I used size 24 GA)
(4) wire cutters
and newspapers or an old cloth to protect your work table Step 1… Working close as possible to a cross wire (as seen in the above photo), take your first pine cone and twist it in a clock wise direction, pointed side down, in-between the two center wires that make up your wreath frame. After inserted, push the cone side-wards into the cross wire, that will help to anchor it. After that twist in your second pine cone, just as you did the first, and then push it into the first cone you placed on your wreath form. By pushing the cones together, the cone petals will mesh into each other which makes the wreath both structurally and visually solid looking. This photo, looking from the side of the wreath, shows how the first three pine cones have been inserted into the wreath frame. The above photo shows the completed center part of the wreath, looking at the front side. This photo shows the completed back side of the wreath with the pointed ends of the pine cones facing you. Step 2… Take the end of your florist wire and lash it to any one of the cross wires that make up your wreath frame. After that twist the florist wire once round the top of the pine cone nearest it (as seen in the above photo). After wiring your first cone, take your wire over to the top of the cone next to it and do the same; continue twisting the florist wire, from one cone to another until you have completed the circle of cones, then twist the wire around a cross wire again. By doing this step you have secured all the cones to each other and the wreath form. Step 3… Working from the back side of your wreath, you will next be forming the inner circle. First attach your florist wire to the inner wire of your wreath base at a cross wire. Next take your pine cone and push it tightly up against the florist wire and your wreath frame; then lash the cone to the frame. The above photo shows a side view of how the cones are pushed up tightly next to each other and how they are positioned on the wreath frame. This is the completed backside of the inner circle. The is the completed front side of the inner circle. Step 4… Working from the backside of the wreath, pine cones are next added to form the outer ring. Start by attaching your florist wire to the outer wire of your wreath frame at a cross wire, and begin attaching your cones. The above photo shows the first two cones that were attached. Notice how they have been pushed up close to each other, and how their petals are pushed into the wire wreath base. The above photo shows the completed back, and this photo shows the completed front. Step 5 … To make the wreath even more solid, florist wire was run tightly around the outside edge of the wreath between the cones’ petals, as shown in the above photo . Next some cross support was added to the pine cone wreath in three or four places, which is similar to the cross supports on the wire wreath form. Take your florist wire and attach it to the back side of your wreath on the frame (you can see it where I’m pointing in the photo). Bring the wire from the outside of your wreath to the front hiding the wire between the petals of the pine cones as it goes over the front and again moves to the back of the wreath through its center; then lash it to the back of the wreath frame again. By doing these two steps the wreath is held tightly together in both directions. Step 6… Decorating the Wreath… Supplies needed
(1) a can of Rust-oleum spray Crystal Clear Enamel (gloss) (optional, but I used it)
(2) wired ribbon ( I used 1 1/2 inch thick)
(3) assorted nuts in their shells ( I used hazelnuts and filberts)
(4) decorative picks with berries (available at craft stores everywhere)
(5) florist wire and wire cutters
(6) not shown an electric drill and a 5/64 inch drill bit
(A) ..Cut berries from picks (as seen in the photo) and attach florist wire to them leaving about 6 inches of wire to attach to wreath.
(B) ..Wearing safety glasses drill a hole through the base of each nut. Pass florist wire through holes, and wire as berries were done, leaving about 6 inches of wire to attach to wreath.
If you are good with a hot glue gun you could possibly attach the berries and nuts to the wreath using it, instead of doing the wiring and drilling.
After attaching the pine cones to the wreath base, no matter how tightly you positioned them, there will be spaces, here and there, between the cones. Take you nuts and berries and use them to fill in empty spots. Try to place things a bit symmetrically when you lay out your nuts and berries. Before permanently wiring or gluing berries and nuts to the wreath do a dry run to see what looks best. When you finally get your berries and nuts where you want them, pass the florist wire through the wreath to its back side and wire the berries and nuts to the tops of the cones that form the center of your wreath.
Next look at the three photos showing my wreath with no bow, but berries and different kinds of nuts on it. Each one has a different look. Here hazelnuts and berries have been used (the wreath looks kind of rustic and has an Adirondack kind of vibe). This is with berries, hazelnuts and filberts (a bit more colorful with the addition of the lighter filbert shells). This is just berries and filberts (the filberts being a light color create a more high contrast paired with the pine cones).
The three wreaths just shown show the pine cones and nuts in their natural colors; I would say a bit more rustic and earthy. The next picture shows it after being varnished with the Rust-oleum Crystal Clear Enamel. The Crystal Clear brought out all of the deeper-richer colors that the cones and nuts have, and I think protects the wreath a bit; the look is a bit more elegant and Victorian. If you decide to varnish the wreath spray it with the nuts attached. After varnishing then attach the berries and bow. Spray it first face down, so you can get the back and sides. After that (when it has dried), spray its front and sides a bit more. When I sprayed mine, I had it suspended up on some old 4×4 inch wooden blocks so it was not touching the cardboard that I put on the floor of my garage under it.
Step 6… To hang the wreath, take a length of florist wire and double it. Attach it to the top of your wreath on the back center and wire it to the wreath’s wire frame.
Step 7…To make the Bow, as seen on the wreath, read my post Making an Easy No Tie Bow for Your Christmas Wreath
So there you have it, instructions on how to make a Pine Cone Christmas Wreath. Years ago, when I did art and craft fairs, I made many of them and sold them seasonally. Making the wreath brought back happy memories of doing shows and of all the really nice/wonderful people who I came across during that period of my life.
This, my 161 post, marks the 5 Anniversary of Fred Gonsowski Garden Home.com. Thanks You to all of the people who have written comments, pinned me on Pinterest, The San Francisco Chronicle, eHOW, and Face Book. Seeing that my articles on interior decorating and gardening have been read, so far, over a million and a half times by people world-wide has really been a JOY.
Companion Posts on Fred Gonsowski Garden Home.com
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Putting Lights on a Christmas Tree..The Easy Way 11-3-2011,
Christmas Tree Decorating..Step-by-Step, Like a Pro 11-13-2011,
Cutting/Making Paper Snowflakes 10-27-2011,
A paper Craft project for Kids..Make a Christmas Tree out of Your Name 11-18-2011,
It’s Easy to Make a Tulle Christmas Wreath 11-8-2012,
How to Decorate a Christmas Tree with Tulle 10-20-2012.