Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Wreath Re-Do

Attic Gal Rachelle says:

I have been feeling rather anxious to redecorate lately, not that everything needs to be tossed and started anew, but that I just need a little updating. I have been looking around my house for some things that need tweaking or replacing that will make everything seem fresh again. That was my goal for the summer. Well, summer has come and gone, and I really didn't get to any of those projects. I was feeling pretty bad about that, so I decided, just to make myself feel better, I would at least conquer the one decor element that was looking the most tired - the huge wreath above my family room fireplace.

I like it because it is huge and about the only thing I ever found that was the right scale for that massive stone fireplace that has no mantle. I also liked the fruit because the family room is actually attached to the kitchen where I have I have a series of framed botanical fruit prints that I still really like. And of course, when I hung it up 7 years ago when we bought the house, this wreath was much fresher.

But now it needed to be replaced.

I went to my very favorite home decor store, Tai-Pan Trading (more like a super-duper store!) and looked for something to replace it. Tai Pan is especially known for their beautiful and realistic artificial flowers, and they have very talented florists on staff who can do some incredible things. I saw a few pieces I really loved, but they were either too small for above my fireplace, or were the wrong colors, or were just too formal. I didn't find anything that was just right. And that is a good thing too, because anything that was big enough was in the $350 to thousand dollar range. Ouch!

So I decided to rethink things. I decided that I could use the wreath that I already had and strip it down and start over with new flowers and fruit. It sounded like a good idea, but the one thing that has ALWAYS intimidated me is floral arranging. Just ask Attic Gal Alysa. She will tell you that is the one craft I won't do.

Well, not unless I am desperate enough, I suppose.

So I decided to be brave and go for it. I spent the next 2 hours in Tai Pan picking out flowers and fruit that I thought might work. It was really stressful, because I live 1 1/2 hours away, and they only have a 2 week return policy, so I had better choose correctly, because it wasn't like I could run back for something else. That's why it took me 2 hours. Geez.

So today I got up the courage to do the big wreath re-do. I tore the old grapes and junk off the big grapevine wreath, and started playing around with the stuff I bought. I was sure not to wire or glue anything down until I had it just how I liked it.

I actually didn't take very long once I finally got the guts to get started. That hard part was definitely picking the flowers out at the store.

And here it is!

I chose lemons and olives to still use the fruit theme, and to go along with the sort of Italian/French feel in my yellow kitchen. And I chose poppies because they seem very informal to me with their furry crooked stems and bright colors, since it is an informal family room.

I'm sure anyone with a trained eye for floral arranging would find a million things wrong with it, but who cares? I like it and I think it really brightens up the room!

The picture doesn't do it justice. It is big and beautiful and looks pretty terrific in that space.

So, for under $100 I was able to re-do an old, worn out wreath rather than spending many times that on a professional arrangement. Cool.

The important thing is that I did it. I was brave enough to buy the supplies and try my hand at something I was convinced I could never do.

Is there some kind of craft that intimidates you, that you have always thought you couldn't do? I encourage you to rethink that. Try your hand at something new.

Be brave.

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