How to make a herb wreath
Here’s what you need to make a herb wreath:
For the basic structure
Two pairs of pliers – jewellery pliers if you have or the DIY variety should do fine.
Fish gut or nylon – clear is ideal but black or green should also blend in.
Twine or string to hang, any colours you like
Long reeds for the base shape or you can buy a ready made grapevine wreath or chicken mesh wreath form from a florist or craft store.
Wire – from any hardware store
For the decor
Bay leaf branches
How to make a herb wreath:
1. If you’re making your wreath form from the reeds you picked or bought, gather them all up and see if you’re happy with the size (this will form the base thickness of your wreath).
2. Bend them back and forth a bit to create some flexibility.
3. Then tie them together in the middle with a piece of wire to secure.
4. Next, bring the two ends together so that they overlap and tie together at this point with more wire. Simply fold the wire around, bring the ends past each other, loop each end of wire around the wreath a couple of times and then bring together and twist to tighten.
5. Now you can begin weaving in your herbs. Start with the herb that you would like to use for the main body of your wreath. We used rosemary because it’s hardy, has twiggy stems and we had lots of it.
6. Pry apart the grass reeds that you’ve used for your wreath form and thread in the stems from the herbs you’ve chosen. Use your discretion and space them out to leave room for your other herbs. Make it as lush as you want.
7. Next, thread through your lavender and bay leaves. Snip off the top section of the bay branches and clear some of the lower leaves to give yourself a neat branch to thread into the wreath.
8. Now use the fish gut or nylon to secure the wreath where it needs it. Tie the woven in herbs back to form a neater, circular shape.
Decorating your wreath:
Here’s the fun part. The adorning of the garland. We used garlic bulbs and red chillies to add some Christmas colour to the wreath.
1. To tie the garlic to your wreath in an unobtrusive manner, attach it from the inside out. First, take a length of wire, about 20cm long and coil the one end tightly with your pliers, creating a pseudo knot on one end.
2. Now pierce a hole through the centre of the garlic clove, using a large needle like an upholstery needle.
3. Next, thread the straight end of your wire through the garlic bulb, so that it goes through the hole you made, but the coiled end gets jammed inside.
4. The wire should be coming out of the bottom of the garlic clove so that you can use it to hang your garlic.
5. To tie the garlic bulb or bulbs to the wreath, simply thread the wire with the bulb attached to it through your wreath, loop it back around to meet the garlic bulb, which should be sitting plush against the wreath now and circle the end of wire around the bulb the way you would tie the last bit of string around the underside of a button.
6. To attach the chillies, simply thread some more nylon string through the tops of the chillies with a sewing needle. Group together two or three chillies and then tie them to the wreath the same way you tied the garlic bulbs.
7. Now all that’s left to do is to tie your twine or string to the top and make a nice bow if you’re using it as a table centrepiece or hang it from your door or an arch way in your home.
If your herb wreath is featuring as a centrepiece on your Christmas table, you could either place some white candles in the centre, some nicely scented pine cones, or a plate of delicious mince pies. Yum.
Wreaths have been used since the year dot to celebrate all sorts of things, from harvest celebrations to olympic achievements. This one can be used to celebrate and give thanks for a year of delicious food and will continue to fulfil its purpose long after the guests have left. Simply relocate it to a bare nook in your kitchen and enjoy its herby bounty.
Easy as, you guessed it, mince pie.