See in the festive season with some crafty creations
I’ve always sung the praises of plants and greenery indoors, and over the cold, dark winter months I find it especially uplifting to have beautiful plant and flower arrangements in my house. I love to get my whole family involved in creating winter decorations – it’s a great way for us to spend time together, and the rich glossy greens and deep reds always fill me with festive spirit.
There are certain plants and blooms, such as poinsettia, amaryllis and cyclamen, that thrive around this time of year (find out more about that here) and are perfect for bringing interest to your table, for giving as gifts or for simply providing a gorgeous home decoration even if you don’t celebrate Christmas.
Here are five easy, cost-effective ways to enjoy and share festive flowers this month.
- Make a herby wreath
This is a fantastic way to make use of dried herbs and create something that looks really stunning all year round(and smells great, too). You’ll just need some floristry foam or a wreath frame (you can pick these up at your garden centre), flexible wire (floristry wire works great), some scissors or a knife and plenty of dried herbs – bay leaves, dried chillies, oregano, thyme, sage and lavender are all perfect for this project. Shape the floristry foam into a circle or ring shape (if you’re using it), and affix bundles of the herbs to it using the wire – it looks really effective to bundle the same herb types together.A herb wreath is a great way to spruce up your kitchen, and they also make fantastic gifts that can also be used in cooking, though they almost look too good to eat.
- Mason jar flowerpot gift
Don’t hand-made gifts just feel that little bit more special? Grab some mini potted plants from your local garden centre, and plant up in a clean Mason jar with a bit of potting compost. Great plants to try would be narcissus, crocus, succulents, hyacinth, bay and other assorted herbs. You could also use a Kilner jar, or just an empty jam jar – they all have the same lovely, homespun feel and make great gifts when finished off with a colourful ribbon or hessian strip. Alternatively, create a few different ones and display them together in your home for some festive interest.
- Cyclamen centrepiece
Take three or four small potted cyclamen in assorted colours, and place them into your choice of tabletop container – I love the look of containers like whisky or port boxes, individual vintage teacups or a brightly painted small wooden box. Add festive decorations like holly berries, pine cones and ribbon, and make sure to keep watered. Beautiful!
The bright red and clean white blooms of cyclamen make them a great festive plant, and they’re super affordable to pick up from most garden centres.
- Mistletoe bundle
Love grows under the mistletoe! This pretty, dark green plant with its creamy white berries has a long history of sparking romance, and cheeky traditions like kissing under the mistletoe continue to this day. Spice up your Christmas party by creating a beautiful bouquet of mistletoe to hang in your doorway. Just take some sprigs of mistletoe, complete with berries if possible, bunch together with some sprigs of fir, and tie firmly together with a nice ribbon – tartan is a lovely colourful choice. Alternatively, thread mistletoe sprigs through a pretty geometric festive ornament – I just love this idea from Etsy.
- Evergreen centrepiece
This is another festive table centrepiece idea that I just love, because I really associate that glossy, dark evergreen foliage with Christmas. Using a cake tin or baking tray provides a flat, sturdy base that’s also watertight, and if you’re anything like me you’ll have a few spare trays lurking in the back of a cupboard somewhere! Just use superglue to affix a large pillar candle to the centre of the tray, and arrange bundles of evergreen foliage around it. I’d recommend using conifer, fir, spruce, holly and ivy, securing the bundles together with string or an elastic band. Complete the arrangement with some pine cones and ribbons, and place a bit of water in the bottom of the tray as cuttings tend to be very thirsty! Make sure that once lit, a burning candle is never left unattended.