The custom and making of Christmas door wreaths

December 15, 2013

wreathsI’ve been funded by Kilkenny Leader Partnership to tutor two community gardens during this past year and we’ve just finished the morning classes on a very festive note. For two days I was surrounded by ivy and spruce, laurel and holly which the gardeners wove into willow wound hoops and decorated with seed heads and cones.

I wrote a post last week explaining how to make indoor festive flower arrangements but as the gardening jobs outdoors are coming to an end, it was lovely to share a natural craft skill with all the gardeners in both Callan and Goresbridge, demonstrating how to make door wreaths to hang outside. 

Goresbridge Wreath MakingThe gardeners have foraged in their gardens and surrounding hedgerows and literally brought evergreens to the table. I wrote a step-by-step post a couple of years ago showing how to make the Christmas door wreaths that you can view here, but if you’re looking for some wreath making inspiration, take a look at some of the gardeners creations.

callan door wreathsIt never ceases to amaze me how different all the wreaths are considering that we all begin with the same equipment.

Goresbridge gardeners wreath making

According to several on-line sources the tradition of Christmas door wreaths began hundreds of years before the birth of Christ, though in recent times its taken on religious connotations with the greens symbolising the strength of life and the reds Christ’s blood at crucifixion.

Christmas Door Wreath

Greenside Up door wreath

However, evergreens were used in ancient times by the Chinese, Jewish and Egyptians and in early Europe door wreaths were apparently used instead of door numbers. They were made with flowers and shrubs grown in each of the gardens so would, by nature, make each doorway different.

If you’re following any Autumn boards on Pinterest or american users of Instagram on your smartphones you may have noticed that door wreaths are often used to signify and celebrate the change in all the seasons with some beautiful creations decorating doors during Fall months in particular.

Are you a fan of door wreaths? There’s still lots of time to make your own Christmas wreaths if you like to hang something fresh and natural on your door. I find my own front door looks quite bare without one now and Christmas doesn’t begin without it.



  • Reply Anthony O'Brien December 15, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Hi Dee, I putting in raised beds on concrete and was just wondering is this a good idea, and is there any

    special soil to use and what height should it be. Thanks for everything. Anto.

    • Reply greensideupveg December 15, 2013 at 10:38 pm

      Hi Anto, In answer yes you can put raised beds on concrete but have to consider drainage. You can do this by drilling holes all around the edges of the beds low down, at least 8in apart and fix mesh on the inside to prevent the holes blocking. I’d recommend building them at least 18″ to 24″ high to allow for deep rooting veg. If you can break up or drill holes in the concrete base all the better. When filling put in a layer of stones for drainage then a a mixture of two thirds top soil to a third well rotted organic matter. Hope that helps! Dee

      • Reply Anthony O'Brien December 16, 2013 at 1:39 pm

        That’s a great help, thanks a lot. Will let u no how I get on.

        • Reply greensideupveg December 16, 2013 at 2:39 pm

          Please do and take lots of photos too as great to look back on, good luck 🙂

  • Reply Crafts for Christmas : Festive Door WreathGreenside Up November 1, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    […] you’d like some more tips and ideas for Christmas wreaths, take a look at the ones we made in the community gardens or for some very elegant door wreaths, hop over to One Bean Row’s post where you’ll […]

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