This Year's Easiest DIY Holiday Decor by

Issue 103 · DIY Holiday Decor · December 17, 2013

This Year's Easiest DIY Holiday Decor

Issue 103 · DIY Holiday Decor · December 17, 2013

Florist Dundee Butcher (aside from having one of the best names out there) boasts an impressive floral pedigree and counts Kensington Palace, Claridge's Hotel, and the Victoria and Albert Museum among her clients. The Texas native spent several years working in London, where she trained with famed British floral designer Jane Packer. Earlier this year, she moved to Healdsburg, in Northern California, and opened the Russian River Flower School, where she teaches classes and sells her floral creations. As she says, "I am never happier than when I am working with beautiful blooms."

On a recent visit, I spotted these holiday wreaths made from the common tree lichen known as Old Man's Beard and asked Dundee to give us a tutorial. She happily obliged, and I've since made three of them. They're astonishingly easy:

Photography by Mimi Giboin for Remodelista.

Russian River Flower School Wreaths

Above: The holiday wreaths on display at the Russian River Flower School.

Old Man's Beard DIY essentials

Above: All you need is some Old Man's Beard, a wire frame (the Maine Wreath Co. offers double rail wreath rings in plenty of sizes), some twine, and a pair of scissors. Old Man's Beard is a species of lichen known as usnea; you can find it hanging from trees branches, much like Spanish moss, in temperate zones of the US. It's fragile but thrives on clean air. 

Dundee Butcher making Old Man's Beard Holiday Wreath

Above: Take a bunch of Old Man's Beard and wrap it around the wire frame into a semblance of a round shape. (You can keep all the twigs and things that are caught in it.)

Old Man's Beard Holiday Wreath DIY

Above: Crimp the wreath to make sure it is the same thickness all the way around. To even it out, you can knead it a bit like bread. If it looks light or patchy in any spots, tuck in some more Old Man's Beard.

Old Man's Beard DIY Holiday Wreath

Above: Turn over the wire frame and start tying the Old Man's Beard to the frame using lengths of twine that are knotted in the front of the wreath.

Old Man's Beard Holiday Wreath DIY

Above: Make sure to tie tight knots and to space the twine ties in regular intervals all around the wreath.

Old Man's Beard Holiday Wreath DIY

Above: A waxed twine works well. You can also use ribbon or leather cord or string to decorate the wreath—anything, really.

Russian-River-Flower-School-Holiday-Wreath

Above: A finished wreath. 

Old Man's Beard Holiday Decoration

Above: An alternative decoration is Old Man's Beard wrapped around a styrofoam ball. No glue needed, just tie string in a web around the ball until the greenery is held in place. The loop on the top is made from rope and is affixed with a push pin. 

For more holiday-wreath making merriment, check out Alexa's Holiday Wreath DIY.



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