The front door of a home is more than just the focal point.  It is where the outside and the inside worlds touch, the portal, where homeowner and visitor each linger for a moment before entering the private spaces.  Here is the perfect location for a personal statement… a sign, striking color, or a wreath.

Jim and I hang different wreaths on our front door to celebrate the change of season. We’ve been using inexpensive, store-bought ones, like our summer wreath, pictured below.

For many years,  I’ve wanted to make my own, using natural materials.  Inspired this week by a few wreaths I found on BHG,  I decided to tackle the project.  I purchased a $2 metal wreath ‘form’ at a craft store, borrowed some floral wire from Jim’s shop; bought a $3 bag of Granny Smiths, and gathered a handful of fresh Nandina and Eucalyptus from our garden. I chose these greens because they were sturdy, fragrant and free.

Next, I protected my work surface with an old sheet and assembled my supplies.

The first step was to play with the branches to see how they would look.

 Then, I started to attach the stems to the circle of wire, using short, 1-2″ pieces of floral wire.

I continued until I was happy with the arrangement.

  The Eucalyptus is sporting clusters of immature corms, which add interest in lieu of berries.

I could have stopped here, because these leaves could stand on their own, don’t you think?

Next, I arranged the apples on the wreath to see how many I would need.  It tuned out to be a perfect dozen.

Now it was time to string the apples together. I cut a long piece of 20 gauge wire and poked it through the apples from side to side. Then I twisted the ends of the wire together.

The final step was to cut 4, U shaped pins, which I poked between the apples and toward the back.  Each time, I turned the wreath upside down, and twisted the wire tightly with needle nose pliers.

If I weren’t snapping photographs, the whole process would have taken about 30 minutes.

Now my wreath was ready to hang on the front door.

Our glass storm door, made it difficult to get a good photograph in the bright light, so Jim held it open for me. What a gentleman!  Since the storm door locks, our entry door is often open , which means we will be able to enjoy the autumnal scent of the apples and fresh eucalyptus throughout the day. I think our full-time greeter likes it too!

This project would make a special decoration for an autumn dinner party, and would look beautiful with red apples, or whatever is available. Total cost: $5.

Besides the fun I had creating the wreath, I’m happy knowing that the leaves will be composted and the apples fed to our chickens, while the wire form can be used again and again.  In fact, I already have an idea for my next one.

I decided to edit a photo of the apple wreath and use it to make a cover for an invitation for our family’s upcoming pie feast.

It is also, charming in black and white, is it not?

I’m joining in the fun at Fresh Eggs Daily’s first: Farm Girl Blog Fest,

…and the fabulous Farmgirl Friday Blog Hop at Deborah Jean’s Dandelion House

…and the ever inspiring Beyond the Picket Fence

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