Whew! The past month has really flown!! Zack came home, I left to stay with my grandmother, got home, met my sister for shopping. And then the wreaths began…… First here is a photo I took while with my gram of an old schoolhouse that her mom went to school at. I drove or rode past this building many, many times while growing up, but never really paid much attention to it. It is now pretty much hidden from view by the trees, brush and vines.
I’m not sure where the year has gone, but the smell of evergreen boughs has been strong in the wreath workshop for the past week.
This is the result of many days of cutting and clamping. We begin by cutting overgrown trees from a tree farm. The branches are piled into the truck and then piled in the workshop. Then my job begins….
The most important tool I have is my pair of Felco #6 pruners. These are expensive, but very sharp and easy to use pruners. The #6 I use is the right size for my hands…. Of course the clamping machine is needed along with the Goop to clean up with. Also necessary for long days are chocolate and caffeine, and the best thing I tried this year- Latex rubber gloves from the dollar store… I hate using gloves, leather or similar ones are hard to work in. Last year I used lots of bandages to protect my fingers, but gave the kitchen glooves a try. They worked quite well! I was able to pick up skinny branches and held up better than I thought they would. I didn’t have to scrub sticky sap off my skin- just peeled off the gloves. They even held up through them covered in hand cleaner overnight and it took 4 days to “kill” the first pair.
This photo shows one of the rings I start with… this is 12″ in diameter and will make a wreath up to 24″ in diameter when done. To the right are some of the tips cut ready to group into bunches and clamp onto the ring. We use Fraser Fir, Scotch Pine, and White Pine mixed in our wreaths. I like the mixed look.
One of the finished 12″ ring wreaths. I also make wreaths with 10″ rings and some with 18″ rings. The larger ones seem to take forever to make! They end up over 30″ in diameter from the 18″ ring.
This is the last photo I have due to not taking one before leaving last night. The finished order left early this morning! This shows the branches ready for constructing the swags we make. We use long branches of each of the 3 varieties of branches and tie with wire. They are then topped with a bow and decorated with little red berries and pine cones.
One order done, one big one to go…. the first go out plain, for the next order, the wreaths all need to be decorated and is due in 2 weeks. I’m resting my hands this weekend….
I haven’t totally given up on my quilting.. (well, yea for the past week or so)… I have some photos taken of some works in progress that I began at my grandmother’s. ( any Facebook friends may have seen them already) I took a good share of my studio with me due to being there for over 2 weeks. I also had a couple of special orders to do while there, too. I think this link will work so if interested, you can see the Works in Progress Photos on Facebook.