In an effort to get well and truly into the Christmas spirit my friend Val Bowen agreed to show me how to make a wreath from leaves, berries and cones found in my garden (luckily I just got in ahead of the birds for the last remaining berries and rose hips, but of course I'll be feeding them regularly over winter so I don't feel too guilty). We spent all morning wrapping moss round a wire base and fixing with florist's wire. We then made little 'bouquets' of holly/bay/yew leaves with some rose hips and holly stems and berries mixed in. These were wired over the moss, the exposed wire then being covered by other bits of foliage pushed deep behind the original wire wrapping the moss. I also made a 'bouquet' of different shaped fir cones for the top of my wreath...not bad for a first attempt if I do say so myself! Val's lovely wreaths can be found at the plant stall at Nailsworth Country Market every Friday.
For more festive cheer I collected empty 1litre milk cartons, cut angel shapes out following the patterns found in the Winter issue of BuyLOCAL and then decorated each one with Rub and Buff gold paint from Kendrick Street Gallery in Stroud and stuck on sparkly sequins and shapes with PVA glue from Mother Goose in Nailsworth. These look amazing hanging round the room or even outside on a tree.