DIY Faux Succulent Wreath

It seems like everywhere you look on Pinterest or Instagram, succulents have taken over. They are a staple in home décor, great accents for the office and a very trendy addition to weddings. I even included succulents in my wedding, giving them away as our favour and incorporating a few in my bouquet. Last month, when Mike and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary, he had my bouquet re-created and it included 3 beautiful succulents that I was able to replant in containers for my home.

For a long time, there were no plants in my home. People would occasionally bring me plants around the holidays or as a hostess gift, but it never failed that every single one of them would die – even the ones that were meant to last a long time. It took a little bit of trial and error (and some plant sacrifices), but I have finally managed to navigate the care of succulents. Once you know how to take care of them, they are pretty easy, but they can be a little temperamental. I love the look of them though, and I love that I don’t need to baby them. In the matter of just a couple of months, my home has gone from having no plants to having at least one in every room with most of them being succulents. I’m always looking for new ways of adding succulents to my home, and this week it was actually outside my home that got some succulent love.

Last summer, my friend Sam and I attended a workshop at a floral shop in Niagara-on-the-Lake to make a succulent wreath. I’d seen them before at craft shows and they always looked so lovely, but I doubted my ability to take care of it, let alone make one myself. Well, I did and it actually turned out great. The downside was that it needed a lot of TLC being that it was  outside in the heat of summer. I had to water it every so often (but not too often) and make sure to protect it from the sunlight. Plus, every time I opened my front door, little bits of moss would fall in my foyer along with some spiders or other creepy crawly critters.

This year, I wanted the same look, but I didn’t want to have to worry about taking care of it. So, I opted for a fake one. Do you know how expensive they are?? I saw one in a store for $80! As usual, my mind went into hyperdrive about how I could make one myself. I took a drive to Michael’s, coupons in hand, to check out their selection of fake succulents. I picked the perfect time to go because everything was Buy One Get One Free! So, today I bring you instructions on how to make one yourself.

First, I needed to choose a base for my wreath. I decided to use a grapevine wreath for mine for a couple of reasons. The first is because it was inexpensive (about $7 for an 18 inch wreath) and the second is because I knew that I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to cover the entire base. If I had used a foam or wire ring, I would have had to buy more plants or fillers to hide the base.

Next, it was time to decide what kind of plants to put on my wreath. I found a few pictures for inspiration, but mostly I was going off the cuff, deciding to see what was available and what caught my eye. These were the pictures I found:

While I was in the store, I simply looked for pieces that I liked and tried to estimate how many I would need to create the look I was hoping for. I wanted succulents to go all the way around the wreath, with some of the grapevine showing. I also wanted some leaf-type pieces to hang from the bottom and sides, to give it a natural, undone kind of look. I started placing the pieces one by one around the wreath until I had an idea of how many I needed.

fullsizeoutput_991.jpegMichael’s had these great sheets of succulents that were both stylish and budget friendly. I liked how bright and vibrant the colours were and figured it would be very suitable for summer. The larger sheet was $25 and the smaller was $13. Then, I found a couple of individual plants to mix it up a bit and stand out from the rest. These were each $9. Finally, I picked a bunch of leaves that I could cut up and place on at the end for $5. In total I had 11 large (including the two statement ones), 18 medium, 15 small and 1 bunch of leaves.

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Once I had all my plants, I headed back home to start crafting. You can attach the plants in lots of different ways. The smaller plants on the sheet just popped right off leaving a small stem, whereas the larger ones had a flat bottom. I thought about using wire to attach them, but settled on hot glue for a more secure wreath.

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To start assembling the wreath, I took my two “statement” plants and chose their location first. Then, I placed the larger plants around the wreath, leaving some space in between each to fill in with the smaller ones. Don’t start gluing yet! I arranged and rearranged mine a few different times before I was satisfied with the look. I snapped a quick picture for a guide, but I knew that I would likely end up making it up as I went along. Once I was happy, I started gluing. I started with the big ones, then filled in the space with the medium and small ones. Arranging them first before committing to the glue is a good way to ensure that you have enough to cover your project, but also it lets you visualize what you’re doing.

fullsizeoutput_978I ended up adding more of the small pieces than I had laid out in the first place because I wanted to create a fuller look. Finally, I cut off some of the branches and glued them on the outside and inside edges to make it a little more “wild”.

Here’s a look at the end result!

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I’m super happy with the way it turned out! It came together really quickly, too. I love the look of real succulent wreaths, but they aren’t for everybody. Opting to make a fake wreath over the real has a lot of great benefits:

  • It is cost efficient – With my coupons (never shop at Michael’s without a coupon), this wreath cost me $49 incl tax! Compare that to $80 in store for a fake one or as much as $90 for a real one!
  • It is cleaner – A real one requires moss and dirt in the wreath whereas a fake one does not, so it is much cleaner in both the assembly and when it is hanging on your door.
  • You can re-use it – Instead of having to spend the money every summer for a new one, your wreath will be ready to go every year.
  • No maintenance – No watering needed. Just assemble, hang and enojy!

If you choose to make your own, be creative! The options are endless and it really gives you the chance to express yourself and create something that suits you! If you make one, please share your pictures with me! I’d love to see your creations!

-KQ

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