Step by step guide to make a homemade Christmas wreath

PUBLISHED: 17:08 17 December 2013 | UPDATED: 17:11 17 December 2013

Susanna with the gathered material

Susanna with the gathered material


Why not gather some foliage, flowers and stems from the garden to create a stunning wreath you’ve made yourself this Christmas? Leigh Clapp visits Susanna Jarrett of Tiger Rose Floral Design in West Meon to learn more

Taking a course in floristry while working in window display at Selfridges inspired Susanna Jarrett to create Tiger Rose Floral Design in 1990. Originally in Pimlico, she now runs the business from her home in West Meon with her team. The underlying aim continues to be to create unusual and innovative designs. “What I truly love about flowers is that they constantly change throughout the seasons and all the time new varieties come on the market. I love to combine different colours and highlight foliages and flowers to create designs. No two arrangements 
should be the same, the scope is so vast,” Susanna comments.

As well as creating bespoke flowers for weddings and parties, Susanna holds very popular workshop courses at this time of the year on festive floral arrangements and wreaths. Here she shows us a lovely wreath that you may like to try at home, using the same material or what ever you may have available in your garden and in the hedgerows.

Get in touch

Tiger Rose Floral Design, Bridge House, West Meon, GU32 1JG,, 01730 829989,
See website for details on Christmas Flowers course days and Wreath workshop – Wednesday 11th December, 10 – 1pm, £55 (includes materials, coffee and tea with homemade cakes and mince pies).

Hampshire Life readers’ offer – 10% discount, quote ref HLD10.

Book by email or phone. Individual and group classes can also be arranged throughout the year.


Mellow-toned wreath


Oasis foam base (soaked in water)

Stub wires

Berried ivy

Trailing ivy




Rose hips

Lauristinus - Viburnum tinus



Pine cones

Cinnamon sticks


Florist scissors, secateurs

Top tips

1) Soak the oasis before you start to use it.

2) Work in odd numbers with detailing.

3) Place the detailing pieces on the wreath before wiring to get a feel for the composition.

4) Other detailing to try includes apple or orange slices.

5) Some alternative foliage to use can be fir, box or senecio.

6) You may like to add some coloured stems, such as cornus or willow.

7) Wired ribbon is best as it holds its shape.

8) If made in advance you can take the wreath down on a weekly basis and soak the oasis.

9) Spray with water occasionally to keep fresh and replace any pieces that are wilting.

Step by step

1: Pull two long stub wires through the oasis and wrap together to form a hook.

2: Check the foliage is clean and free of needles or leaves then place it around the wreath, mixing varieties as you go and working from the outside first.

3: Continue on the top to place in the foliage, ensuring no oasis can be seen by using smaller pieces inside the wreath.

4: Build up the foliage and flowers until the whole base is covered then wire the bases of some pine cones and place them amongst the greenery.

5: Add in some rose hips and keep checking the look of the design to see balance and progress.

6: Add some cinnamon sticks and finish off your wreath with a wired ribbon bow before spraying with water.

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