Autumn brings an explosion of color; transforming greens and pastels to golds, oranges, browns and deep crimson. It’s as if nature has decided to have one last fling before retiring for the winter! For families that follow the rhythm of the seasons, now is the time to bring those beautiful colors indoors. We love to use wreathes in our decorating. The wreath, a symbol of eternity, reminds us of the circle of life; of how one season flows into another, only to return again and again.
We would like to share with our Autumn Oak Leaf Wreath. With just a wee bit of sewing and a simple stencil, you will be able to bring the beauty of the autumn season indoors.
2/3 yard cotton solid or muted print
2/3 yard cotton print
2 – 3 pounds stuffing (Polyfill, cotton or wool)
4 ½ yards 3/8” grosgrain ribbon (I used 2 different colors; 2 ¼ yards each)
Bone ring (for hanging)
2 (two) 6” square pieces of Mylar (for stencil)
X-Acto knife or small, very sharp, pointy scissors
Stenciling paint brush
Make 2 copies of pattern.
From 2 pattern sheets cut out one upper wreath section and one lower wreath section. Tape the two pieces together along the marked broken line.
Place pattern on fabric matching the “place on grain line” on the lower wreath section with the grain of the fabric. Cut out 8 solid pieces and 8 print pieces. Set aside while you make the stencil.
There are 2 pieces to the leaf stencil; the leaf and the leaf detail. Place the first piece of Mylar over the pattern of the leaf. Using a permanent marker trace the leaf. Next, place the second piece of Mylar over the pattern of the leaf. Trace the leaf AND the leaf detail.
Place the stencils over a cutting surface, and using an X-Acto knife, cut out the leaf shape on the leaf stencil and cut out only the leaf detail on the leaf detail stencil. Note: You can also use small, very sharp, pointy scissors to cut out the stencil.
Stencil 4 solid wreath pieces as follows: Fold a wreath piece in half lengthwise and lightly finger press so you can see the center of the wreath piece.
Position the leaf stencil in the middle of a solid section by turning the stencil diagonally. The points of the stencil should be touching the middle crease line and be centered up and down. Note: The wide part of a wreath section is the top, and the stem of the stencil should be at the bottom of the wreath section. (The narrow section.) If it makes it easier, you can tape the stencil to the fabric so the stencil does not slip.
Dip stenciling brush in paint and tap on paper towel to remove access paint.
Beginning at the outer edge of the leaf stencil, stencil the shape using a straight up and down tapping motion. Re-dip your brush in paint as needed, always tapping it off on paper towel before continuing. Tip: When stenciling, it is better to use less paint and apply multiple layers. This gives you more control and creates a more natural look. I prefer not to stencil the center of the leaf to give the leaf more depth. Note: If you would like to shade your leaf even more, apply more paint to the outer edges of the shape or use another color. Stencil 4 solid wreath pieces. You do not need to stencil the other 4 since they will be at the back of the wreath and not seen. Allow the paint to dry.
Position the second stencil, the leaf detail, over your stenciled leaf shape. Use the outline of the leaf on the second stencil as a guide. Using a darker color, stencil the leaf detail. Allow to dry.
Assembling the wreath:
Beginning with a print section, sew a print and solid section together using a 1/2″ seam.
Iron all seams open as you go.
Continue sewing pieces together, alternating the print and stenciled solid sections until you have 8 sections sewn together. DO NOT sew the 8th section and the 1st section together. Your ring should remain open.
Beginning with a solid section, sew together like the front wreath. The back will mirror the front.
With the right sides together, pin the front of the wreath to the back of the wreath, matching seams. Note: Solids will be touching solids and prints touching prints.
Using a 1/2″ seam, sew the outer circle then the inner circle. DO NOT sew the ends. You have now created a long tube. Clip inner seam to stitching line. This will help the seam lie flat.
Turn the tube right side out. With right sides together, pin section 1 to section 8 on the front side. Extend your pinning to 1″ – 2″ on the back.
Using a 1/2″ seam, sew the circle together, leaving an opening on the back.
Stuff the wreath.
Using a slip stitch, sew up the open stitch on the back.
Turn the wreath over. On a print section, sew a bone ring to the wreath about 2” from the top.
Cut out 8 pieces of ribbon, 20” long. When cutting the ribbon, cut the ends on diagonals so the ribbon does not fray. From the back, tie the ribbons to the wreath along the seam lines. Use a square knot (right over left, left over right) with 1” tails. This will slightly gather the wreath sections creating a “puffy” look.
Celebrate the beauty of autumn!
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