Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Retro Wreath Tutorial

Hi everyone, hope you are all having a lovely week, welcome to some new followers this week, thanks for enjoying my blog and paying a visit.  It feels like it has been a really long week to me so far, it is going very slowly.  I am sure before I know it the week will be over, I guess I am just counting down the days till the Easter holidays!
Anyway, I promised ages ago that I would share a tutorial on how to make one of my wreaths like these:

Well I have finally gotten round to making another one, any remembered to photograph it along the way, (although it has taken me three days!) Here goes:

1. Gather together everything you need:

PVA glue,
polystyrene ring,
assorted fabric,
Assorted yarns and string,
ric rac (or other ribbons and lace)
Needle and thread,

2. Cut your fabric to a length that will go round the girth of the hoop with a little extra to spare, the width is up to you.  In this wreath I used 7 pieces of fabric in varying widths and patterns.

3. Iron a fold in one of the short ends of your fabric.

4. Sew a hem along the short end. (You don't need a sewing machine, but it is quicker):

5. Paste PVA glue directly onto your polystyrene ring the pull your fabric round it so that the hem is on the inside of the ring to the back. You will need to pull and stretch the fabric so it lies flat against the ring with no wrinkles.  Pin it into place along the hem.  (You will find that the hem is curved, this is fine)

6. Continue this process with all the fabric, leaving gaps in-between each piece.  Pin every bit and makes sure you always keep the hem in the inside to the back. 

7. Put PVA onto the ring in between the fabric and pin your yarn or string onto the ring.  Wrap the yarn or string round and round the ring until you have filled the gap.  You may find it easier to cut the yarn or string into smaller lengths, this is fine so long as you make sure every piece is pinned to the ring at the start and end:

8. Continue this process all the way round the ring till you have filled all the gaps with yarn or string:

9. Next you need to create four Suffolk Puffs for the flowers on your wreath.  To do this, use a template to cut a circle of fabric in a coordinating colour (I made one large white circle, two small white circles and on patterned small circle to layer on top of the large one).  I drew round a bowl as my large template and some tape for my three smaller circles.

10. Next, sew a running stitch round the edges of your circles and pull the ends to gather the fabric together and make the puff. Tie a knot in the thread to secure it:

11.  Repeat this process with the smaller circles.  

12. Now sew a button onto the centres of the puffs.  I like to have my puffs ruffly side up:

13. Next glue the three puffs onto the ring with a blog of PVA, pin in place until dry.

14. Leave your ring for a few hours, until the glue has dried and then remove all the pins.   Hang your wreath with a piece of raffia or other coordinating yarn.  Here is your finished ring:

I think you would need to set aside about two or three hours to make this wreath, not including drying time.  If you love this wreath but don't have the materials or time to make it yourself, then pop over to my shop and your can purchase this very ring for yourself.

If anyone has a go at making this wreath or something similar I would love to see it, so do drop me an email.  Plus let me know if yo think this is a good tutorial or how I can improve it.

Have a wonderful day.


  1. Helen--I love it! I love the different materials instead of all fabric or all yarn. And I especially love how you call them Suffolk Puffs (here we call them yo-yos--your name is much more fun and sophisticated :)

  2. Love it! Thanks for the inspiration... will have to source myself some polystyrene rings to give this a go!

  3. So beautiful! We don't have that wreath base here in my corner of the world, sadly.

  4. i love your blog!! are you in britain? i had a bloody nightmare finding polystyrene wreaths in the uk! i had to buy 5 from an ebay seller!

  5. What a great idea, they look so beautiful Helen!
    I have looked at the Etsy website, its all very tempting to join myself, I just need to have the time to get around to making more things and listing everything!

    I also may need to take you up on your offer for some help later on if thats still ok!? :-)


  6. I just found you through Fran's link party - I love this idea! I'm definitely going to give it a go!


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