This simple DIY autumn leaf wreath has become a family tradition as the years have ticked by. It is the answer to that eternal question – what can I do with all the autumn leaves we’ve collected?! If your children are anything like mine, or you are anything like me, you will be buried under fast fading beauties. This easy craft preserves all those gorgeous autumn leaves so you can enjoy them throughout the season.
If you have collected autumn leaves and pressed them, you’re all ready to go! If you didn’t, you’d better pop on your wellies and get out there right now! The leaves I used come from the Hungarian oaks which grace the space outside the library in our town and which are large and dramatic. We have also made beech leaf wreaths and I want to have a go at Japanese Maples as soon as possible!
I took the photos of this project indoors with the wreath hanging in front of one of my attic windows which catches the gentle softness and shadows of autumn light beautifully but you can also use this as a pretty outdoor wreath but it won’t last as long. I rather like that it has a second chance to shine before fading and falling as the rains and winds of the season take their toll. Then I can replace it with a Christmas wreath instead!
What You Need To Make An Autumn Wreath
- Copper Wire Wreath Base
- Pressed and Dried Autumn Leaves – I use a flower press but leaves layered between sheets of kitchen roll and pressed under heavy books does the same job!
- PVA (white) Glue
I have some copper wire wreath bases knocking around and a lot of pressed autumn leaves so this seemed like a good opportunity to use some of them. I wanted something simple, beautiful, thrifty and earthy but looking opulent and celebratory. You will also need a nice selection of pressed autumn leaves – you can either do as I did and use a collection of leaves from the same tree or use a variety of leaves in different shapes and colours. The leaves I chose looked pretty drab just as they were but, oh boy, did they shine when the autumn light blazed through!
How to Make a Homemade Autumn Leaf Wreath
Press your leaves as soon as you get them home, if you leave it to the next day the leaves will already be crisping and curling and their colour will be fading rapidly. For this project they don’t need to be pressed for weeks, mine were left for about 10 days and they seemed happy!
- Lay the pressed and dried leaves out on the wire wreath to get the positions right
- Remove them but make sure they stay in the right order and orientation.
- Glue each leaf onto the wire with PVA and weigh them down with coins so that they keep contact while they are drying.
- Once they are dry turn the leaf wreath over and pop a glue blob onto the wire and each leaf just to make them extra secure.
- Tie a ribbon on the top and Hey Presto!
This autumn leaf wreath looks perfect hanging in a sunny window rather than on a door so that you can really appreciate the wonder of nature’s colours.
More Ideas for Autumn Wreaths
Other possibilities for using those foraged forest floor finds (I do love a bit of gratuitous alliteration!) include wrapping the wire ring with wired ribbon
and adding pine cones and shiny conkers
The hot glue gun works best here, PVA isn’t quite up to the job! Obviously you can pack them closer together than this or stick them into Styrofoam wreath bases or dried flower oasis but I like a bit of sparkle and the gold ribbon shining through makes me smile!
You could also try: feathers, shells, berries and seed heads from garden and hedgerow, teasels and grasses and of course ivy, holly and other lovely winter evergreens! I am plotting how to work this into a wreath!
For even more ideas check out Red Ted Art’s 20+ Beautiful Leaf Crafts, keeping crafty hands busy this Autumn!
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