Monday, January 4, 2010

Love it or leave it... Or, maybe alter it?

Bleatings from EnviRambo.

By now most of you are in the process of, or have, put Christmas away and moved on to the new year. I would like to have that checked off my to do list as well. Most years I would just shove stuff in boxes or totes and bury it in the basement, not giving it another thought until the following December. This year I am doing things a little differently. Maybe it is the proximity to the New Year, a time of renewal and resolutions. Or, maybe it is just the pit of despair also known as my basement that prompted me to reevaluate things. Storage space comes at a premium in this house. There simply is none. With lots of stuff and no place to put it, one has to be creative to maintain a neat, organized home. Even more so, one has be brutally realistic and ruthless in culling. If you do not love it, why keep it?

This has become my mantra for the new year - just this very instant. If you do not love it, why keep it? And so it goes with my Christmas decorations. Before taking the time to *carefully* put them away, I pause before each and repeat my mantra. If the answer is no, I must decide if the item can be altered to be worthy of storage or, if it would be better served in the home of someone with more storage space. Items I love are reorganized and packed away, purged items are sorted out for giveaway, and those destined for alteration are set aside for inspiration. Such as this wreath:

With the addition of our vintage aluminum Christmas tree this year, this traditional "evergreen" wreath does not really fit our new design aesthetic. Way too much green and a bit too much plastic, but a form I can work with. I love the clean lines and pop of wreaths made with bulb ornaments. Taking inspiration from our "new" tree, I used the extra bulbs to transform this wreath into one I love.

The first step was to remove the top from the wire form. This was fairly simple. All it took was locating the small pieces of wire securing it to the base and unwinding them. With the base clear, I used florist paddle-wire to wind around the form, giving something to secure the ornaments to.

Then I selected the bulbs to use and adhered their hangers to the bulb using hot glue. If you choose not to do this step, beware that the tops may pop off the bulbs when tightening your wire later. Once the tops are glued on place the first row of ornaments around the wreath form.

Weaving in and out of the loops atop the ornaments wind the paddle-wire around the form holding the bulbs in place. Continue around the form until you meet up with the first bulb. Give both ends of wire a pull until taught and twist to secure ends. Do the same for row two until the wreath is complete.

At this point, everything looked great - on the floor - but, when I lifted the wreath to hang on the wall all the bulbs shifted and flopped around. After much contemplation, I decided to hot-glue the top row of bulbs to the bottom row. Before doing so, I tucked a funky silver garland in between the rows to fill out the wreath and hide the form. Problem solved. Now I have a wreath I love and am willing to dedicate precious storage space to. If only it fit in the special storage case I have... alas...


Tammy James said...

Very nice makeover! I love it.

Allie said...

I love this idea! I love old glass ornaments, but because of the pets, I don't like to put them on the tree and risk breaking/mess/injury. A wreath is safely out of reach.

Kellie said...

*Love* it!

Robbie said...

Love it! Great job!

Truffula said...

Tres chic! Definitely an improvement over the original!

Daisy said...

I love it! And I love that you took the time to photograph the process for the rest of us.


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