Fresh and Foraged Cedar Swag
There's no lack of cedar boughs available on our property, so I put them to good use this year, making fresh cedar and eucalyptus swag as a fragrant alternative to a traditional wreath. These timeless, botanical bunches look beautiful adorning a door, hanging over the stove, or as a centerpiece on your holiday table. Representing strength and protection, cedar and eucalyptus are among my favorite botanicals to use for handmade wreathes, swag, and garland.
Ingredients You Will Need
8-10 fresh cedar boughs
fresh silver dollar eucalyptus sprigs, cut into small 6-inch (15.24-centimeter) sections
Additional herbs that would be appropriate for this project: rosemary, peppermint
Additional herbs that could add a pop of color to this project: red rose, St. John’s wort berries
Specialty Supplies You Will Need
2 1.75-inch (4.45-centimeter) vintage gold bells on string
2- to 3-inch-thick (5- to 7.6-centimeter-thick) ribbon
Gather eight to ten boughs of fresh cedar (Douglas fir, juniper and white pine are other good options that may be readily available to you) and cut into sections approximately 12 inches long using garden shears.
Layer the boughs on top of one another, with the most sprayed ones in the back and the smallest ones in the front, holding the ends together at the top with one hand the entire time and shaping the swag into a fan shape.
While continuing to hold the ends of the cedar, add 6-inch (15.24-centimeter) sprigs of eucalyptus, aligning the ends to the ends of the cedar. Two to four sprigs are usually a good amount.
Loop the string of one bell over the botanical stem ends, weaving them through the ends and pulling downward to secure. Loop the string from a second bell over the stem ends twice so that it hangs slightly higher than the other.
Using green floral wire, tightly wrap the bell strings and the ends of the botanicals together. Tie a loop of floral wire in the back for easy hanging. Twist the ends of the wire together and tuck in securely. Cut the ends of the plant stems to the same length for a clean, uniform look.
Finish with a thick ribbon bow to cover the floral wire and give your swag the perfect finishing touch.
I set up a DIY cedar swag table at a recent holiday party and taught several friends and neighbors how to make these gorgeous bundles. They left with a beautiful take-home AND the knowledge of how to make their own next year.
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