Thursday, December 06, 2012

Bay Leaf Garlands

the ingredients are so pretty...

The topic of bay leaf garlands came up yesterday, and since it's been a while since making one, it seemed like it would be a fun thing to do.  The dining room light fixture holds my collection of pinecones and leaves, but needed something a little festive for the holidays.
we're ready to go

First step is to gather the ingredients.  It would be wonderful to use fresh bay leaves right off the tree, but here in the Northeast, that isn't going to happen. 

Dried apples, oranges, and lemons are good additions.  Herbs and spices like cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, rose hips, star anise , allspice, and dried ginger are lovely.  I happened to gather up the blossom ends (I think) from the persimmon tree this summer, and they are lovely, and some goji berries for color are nice too. Cinnamon, cardamom and rosehips need to be soaked before using.  Allspice too (although it isn't used here.  Soak star anise only as long as necessary or it will fall apart.

lemon slices flanked by persimmon stem caps and rose hips
I was going to try maqui berries, but they don't work.
Then, some strong hemp twine, a tapestry needle, and maybe some ribbon, and we're all set.
dried apple slices and cinnamon
For the end, I tied a good strong loop, and then tied a ribbon/bow there.
The trick to making these garlands quickly is to just jog up a handful of the leaves and spear them together.  Some will not be pierced and they will fall away as you work.  That's okay.
A plain bay leaf garland is gorgeous, but I can't ever leave well enough alone.  I teamed many of the ingredients together, although one would be hard-pressed to find anything resembling a regular pattern.
I added a wee lavender wand from last summer.
Because this particular garland was meant for a fixture with 5 candles, there are 5 segments with loops tied in almost even lengths along the way.

Finished and laid out on the table, ready to hang.

It's a little lopsided and the breaks aren't regular...

Perfect for me - a little odd.

In the end, I think that a solid garland of bay with some ribbons would suit this use best - but I like what came of it.


Lemon Verbena Lady said...

Thanks for sharing this idea, Tina! xxoo Nancy

Anne-Marie said...

What a fun idea! Thanks for sharing. :)

Marcy Lautanen-Raleigh said...

Okay now you did it! I am going to have to make one, because yours looks perfect! It suits you to a T!

Perfect post as always!

Tina Sams said...

Thanks - it was just a couple of very pleasant and fragrant hours of work.