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Christmas Wreath - a little history

A Christmas Wreath has hung on my front door every December since I first cut my hands (literally.. ouch) learning how to design and make these wonderful creations. Over the years the design has evolved. From being covered in baubles and glitter, to now being full of lush foliage (Myrtle included!) and natural decorations.

It’s pretty well known that the tradition of the Christmas tree was introduced to Britain by the Germans, namely Prince Albert back in the 1800’s. But the ritual of bringing trees and foliages into the home can be traced back to Ancient Egyptian & Roman times. Many believed that by hanging cuttings of various evergreens, including pine, spruce and fir tree, above their doors and windows, it would keep away evil spirits, witches, ghosts and illness.

Jump forward a few years, and the tradition of decorating trees inside our homes began to grow in popularity.

I especially love the story of how the philosopher, Martin Luther re-created a sky full of sparkling stars in his home, by wiring candles to a tree. These days we’re a little more safety conscious and our twinkling stars come in the form of fairy lights.

And so to the wreath. Many of the trees that were brought into the home had to be trimmed (a tradition in itself) to make them more uniform and allow them to fit into peoples rooms. Not wanting to waste anything, wreaths would then be woven with these offcuts. Originally they were made to be hung back on the tree as decorations, as well as being placed above and on doors and windows.

Becoming more popular over the past few decades, the wreath is now an important part of many a household at Christmas. From the more natural designs, full of foraged foliages and decorations picked up from the forest floor, to the more dazzling faux numbers adorned with tinsel and glitter (I know which I prefer).

A wreath is a welcome sight on any door, and one, I am glad to see that so many people are now embracing. Over the coming weeks I'll be making lots, both for customers and my family & friends. Usually my own wreath comes last, and is made by my very tired hands. But I'm happy to say that this year, mine is already hanging on the door, full of myrtle, and whole lot of love.

If you'd like to have a go at making your own wreath I'm selling a small quantity of do-it-yourself kits, with local delivery. Just pop over to the shop for more information.

Myrtle & Smith


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