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DIY Christmas wreath

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I get my love for Christmas decorating from my mom. When I was young, she always decorated our home with handmade trees boughs that she had collected on her regular walks. They were strewn across most surfaces, wrapped around stair rails and woven into wreaths.

I've carried on this tradition and I thought I'd document the process this year to share with you (in case you're in need of some Christmas decor DIY inspiration).

I like to keep things simple and let the branches do the talking, but you can add more sparkle with a ribbon wrapped around the wreath as a final touch, or tie ornaments to your bow for a little extra shine.

When I hung the wreath up on our door, Olivier suggested I add a bit of sparkle with a simple, gold ribbon. To top it all off, I added a little bell to jingle when we open the door, but I don't think you can see it in the final shot.

In the spirit of buying less and only using biodegradable products, I'd encourage you to keep things "au naturel" with boughs, berries and the like. If you do use ribbon and other store-bought items (as I've done here too), pick ones that you can reuse every year so they don't go to waste. This gold ribbon has been around for at least three years now.

12 steps to make a natural Christmas wreath

STEP 1: Divide your branches into medium and small lengths. Cut any branches that are too long and discard the remains into your compost bin or place them in a base or along your fireplace mantel.

STEP 2: Start with the longer branches by placing them around the wreath to quickly map out where they'll go around the base ivy wreath. I picked mine up a few years ago at a craft store and it's held up really well.

STEP 3: Start sticking the longer branches into the outer edge of the wreath, keeping the branches flat and on a slight angle. I tend to have them angled right but either direction works, just not straight up and down.

STEP 4: Continue filling in the edge with long branches, then work your way in clockwise, using the shorter branches.

STEP 5: Take a step back and look at your wreath every once in a while. Look for empty spots to fill in and lift it up from time to time to see how the branches fall. Once it's as full and bushy as you want, move onto decorations.

STEP 6, 7, 8, 9: I messed up the order of the images a tad, but you'll get the idea. I started with pine cones that I wrapped at the base with green wire. Then I moved the branches a bit to find a good base to wrap the wire around. I placed the cones evenly around the wreath but you can have a cluster on one side if you'd like. This is creativity, anything goes!

STEP 10: I followed the cones with red branches that Oli and I gathered in a nearby field.

STEP 11: I finished the wreath off with the tip of this red bush (sorry, don't know the name of it) and just a few small branches of cedar to add a lighter green colour and a different texture.

STEP 12: Now the easy part, hang it up and admire your work!