This post contains affiliate links and expletives (well it is nearly Christmas!).
It was sometime in my 20s when my housemate at the time first introduced me to Vegetable Fuckloads. The perfect solution to those days when my body rejected anymore junk food, pasta or bread (the staples of the student life). It basically involved a wok and all the vegetables available, irrespective of what they were or whether they complemented each other, a bit of oil and some spices. To this day, whenever I feel the need for a health kick (and the desire to feel a bit of virtue) I go for Vegetable Fuckloads.
This was the precise attitude with which I approached the Festive As Fuck Wreath. It’s basically Christmas fuckloads.
I wasn’t interested in elegant snow tipped pine cones or beautifully crafted wooden figurines adorned with antique lace wings. I wanted a pure unadulterated festive explosion. You know what I’m talking about. It’s like when you let the kids decorate the Christmas tree, but this time you’re not allowed to rearrange it when they go to sleep. I wanted fun without perfection, glitter without symmetry and mess; an authentic reflection of what Christmas reality is.
I’ve talked before about my reservations about Christmas, but if there’s one thing I can get behind, it’s that Christmas is for the kids, nostalgia and childish things. It’s a time to put aside the daily adulting and get back to simple unselfconscious joy.
And this beautiful, gaudy, glittery monstrosity is what the inner child in me let out!
Being an enabler, I want to encourage you to do the same. I want to emphasise that this is about letting go and channelling the Christmas spirit and seeing what happens. This project is absolutely perfect for all those people who say “I’m not creative”. Well yes you are! It’s not about over planning and making something precise or trying to control the final vision. Just go for it!
Before you get started, here are the rules you have to promise to stick to:
- over think it (these are not life changing decisions)
- seek perfection (you are already perfect, stop trying)
- try and make it symmetrical (the world is not symmetrical, challenge your need to make things neat)
- worry if you could have done it better (maybe you could, maybe not, but you can have another go next year, this is not a contest, it’s about expressing yourself)
- be scared it will look shit (it probably will but that does not matter one bit)
- go with your gut (we are always questioning our intuition, learn to trust it)
- go with the flow (stop trying to plan everything, experiment!)
- play (this is how we learn)
- have fun (because it relieves stress)
- make a mess (because it is fun (see have fun) and you can tidy up later)
- enjoy yourself (it’s later than you think, and it’s Christmas, you have permission)
- be free (and remember to bring a bit of this freedom to your everyday life once the glitter has gone)
Here’s how I made mine:
I started by buying a polystyrene wreath base from HobbyCraft
I’m not entirely sure why but I had some some “All that glitters is yarn” in green, red and gold in my stash (they were on 3 for £6 and I think I had originally planned to use it as tinsel)
I then emptied out anything remotely festive in my stash onto my lounge floor and this was the result… (see rule about not overthinking it)
How to cover the wreath.
I started by measuring around the girth of the wreath which was 20cm, and around the circumference of the yarn which was about 100cm.
Next I took the green All that glitters is Yarn and some green Stylecraft Special DK yarn to work double stranded. Someone in my favourite Facebook group (Mildly Offensive Fibre Artists – MOFA) called this kind of yarn “Satan’s Pubes” because it’s hard to see the stitches, so it was with that in mind that I decided to pair it with DK so I wouldn’t have that problem and it worked a treat!
Using a 9mm hook, I crocheted a lose chain (ch) until it reached about 18cm (so that it would be stretched around the wreath base. I chained 2, turned and, starting in the 3rd chain from hook, I worked a double crochet (dc) into each chain across to the start (15dc in this case) chained 2, turned and repeated.
I continued working back and forth in rows of dc, working towards a length of about 90cm. Once the green yarn ran out, I started on the red, until I reached the required length. So far it looked like a very glittery scarf. I consciously discarded the thought that I had uneven lengths of red and green (see the rule about not seeking perfection and symmetry).
Wapping the scarf around the wreath base, I used the green Stylecraft Special DK to fasten the sides together at the back of the base. This created a sleeve covering the base. I didn’t fasten off the end of the scarf until I was sure it was the right length to fit all the way around the wreath. At that stage I fastened off and sewed the red and green ends together.
Now the base was done, I could go to town with the Christmas Vomit! Those of you who saw my Pom-Pom Christmas tree know I have a bit of a penchant for Pom Poms so this is where I started. I donned my Christmas Pudding hat and got to work mixing the rest of the red and the gold tinsel yarn with DK, I set about making as many pom poms as the yarn would allow. I also had some sparkly white DK (Hobbycraft Baby Brilliance) which I added to the mix too.
I can’t even describe the mess this made so I will just show you a snippet… I’m still finding flecks of tinsel all over the house!
When I bought the wreath base, I noticed that some of the Christmas bits were already on clearance so picked up some little wooden baubles for about 50p (a bit of nail varnish would sort those out!) and a jingly bell garland to use to hang the wreath over the door.
I also used a spare holly sprig with berries left over from my samples of the Christmas Pudding Hat.
Then I found one of my prototype Snowicorns which had ended up looking a bit like a new romantic snowman so I decided to add a santa hat and red scarf to festive up that bad boy.
I also had one of my twinkle twinkle star decorations which I figured would hang nicely in the middle (and by nicely I mean over-the-top-ly).
At this point, my supplies were spent!
Time to put it all together!!
I started by trying to arrange the bits and pieces in a vaguely sensible placing but soon just decided to go with the flow and just see them on as and where I fancied (see rule about not overthinking). Not paying much attention to these things is a real challenge for me but I think it’s important to shake up how you do things. It’s where we find insight! (see rules about playing)
Once the pom poms were on, I added the holly sprig and the Santa Snowman, finally attaching the baubles with pins and hanging the star from the centre.
Lastly, I attached the bell garland to the back of the wreath. In order to strengthen this a bit, I added some of the white yarn next to the garland and slip stitched with red yarn over the top and round the back, creating a loop to slip over my letterbox in order to fasten the garland in place on the front door.
Et voila! My Ugly Beautiful Festive As Fuck Wreath!
I hope you have a go at this and let me know what you think.
More importantly, I hope you just find peace and mental freedom whilst having some fun playing!
As always, don’t forget to tag me in your finished makes! Nothing makes me happier than seeing my designs brought to life by others. I love the colour choices and personal touches you add to the patterns!
On Instagram, you can use the hashtag #HookMeHappy or just tag @doradexplored. You can tweet me your pictures, or add your them to my Facebook page. And if socials aren’t your thing, feel free to email me your efforts. It really does make my day! I’m also a huge fan of Pinterest so if you like my patterns I’d love it if you pin them, or visit my Pinterest page which showcases some wonderful inspirational crochet patterns – the talent out there blows my mind!
Until next time.
(C) DoraDoes 2017. You may sell what you make from my patterns, but please credit me as the designer. The pattern is for personal use only and may not be shared. My photos may be shared with credit.