There�s something about this time of year that spurs us to get in touch with nature and bring some of it indoors to decorate. Here�s a few ideas you can use to borrow from the great outdoors for a natural atmosphere indoors.
A Wonderful Wreath � Start by selecting a wreath at least 12 inches in diameter. Create at least half a dozen bundles of 8-inch length cuttings from herbs or shrubs. Good choices include artemisias, sage, holly, euphorbias, or other plants with colorful foliage. Each bundle should be 4-6 cuttings. Use florists wire to tie the bundles together. Then insert the bundles into the wreath at an angle, cut ends in, at roughly equal distances and secure with florists wire. Finish the wreath with a large decorative bow at the top of bottom.
Swing that Swag � When purchasing a Christmas tree, see if you can get extra branches for use around the house. Using florists wire, connect the branches �head to tail� in 6-8 feet sections. Use these to drape over a doorway, fireplace mantle, mirror, or picture. Wind them around any pillars or poles inside, adding ribbon for color. Curl small sections around a punch bowl.
Pine Cone Panache � If you�ve got a source of pine cones, acorns, or dried seed pods you�re in luck. Collect an interesting assortment for decoration throughout the home. Place some of the larger ones in a decorative bowl. Mix in small glass tree ornaments for glitz. For a more subdued look, collect some magnolia leaves and either mix them in au natural or spray them with bronze paint. Small pine cones or acorns can be used to cluster around the base of a large candle.
Bay Leaf Bonanza � Bay leaves are durable once clipped and can decorate many surfaces. Purchase a Styrofoam Christmas tree cone. Beginning at the bottom, use dressmaker�s pins to attach leaves tip down, edges overlapping. Do this row upon row, making sure to keep the Styrofoam well covered. Finish the top with a Christmas tree ornament.