Hydrangeas are flowers that keep on giving; first as bold pom poms which bloom throughout the summer, then as dried, papery clusters that last into the fall. Recently Gardenista contributor Justine decided to prolong the life of a particularly beautiful purple blossom by fashioning it into not one, but two, autumnal garlands.
Photos by Justine Hand for Gardenista.
Above: The cool blue of the dried hydrangeas offsets the rich gilding of this frame.
Above: Justine’s original bouquet in the corner of her dining room. The white ones wilted, but the inky ones dried right in the vase, maintaining virtually all of their original color.
Above: According to Justine, all you need for this project is dried hydrangeas; floral wire, thread, or twine; and anything else you want. For one garland she chose scabiosa seed pods that she found at Whole Foods. (You can also buy a bunch of Dried Scabiosa Pods for $24.50 from Maison De La Croix via Etsy.) For the other she used some beechnuts discovered during a recent walk.
Above: Assembly couldn’t be easier: just wrap the wire around the blooms. Don’t worry about hiding it, because the gold is part of the composition. A similar spool of 24 Gauge Gold Floral Wire is $2.55 at Mardi Gras.
Above: By varying the amount of flowers and the spacing between your specimens, you can make your garland as lush or sparse as you want.
Above: The results: Framed in gold, Justine’s now-dried, purple hydrangea..
Above: Though still quite malleable, the stiff floral wire allowed me to give more structure to this garland, enhancing the sculptural quality.
Above: For her second garland, Justine went with a more delicate approach, opting for single hydrangea blooms instead of clusters. She simply tied silver thread around the flowers and nuts. A 10-meter spool of Pure Silver Thread is $2 from Darke Doings via Etsy.
Above: After about five minutes of tying, Justine’s finished garland adds a touch of fall to her mantel.
Above: Ephemeral bits of fall floating in the air cast playful shadows on the wall.
For more information on drying your hydrangeas, read Dried Hydrangeas Two Ways.