We are having such warm weather here in the north! We've got all the windows open and are very much enjoying the warm breeze that passes through the house. We've got buds coming out on the trees, and flowers opening up in the garden....it's been a lovely first day of spring! To spruce up our front door I thought some springy colors were in order.
Things are still a bit brown (code word for muddy) outside. No leaves on the trees yet, but the grass is starting to look like a happier shade of green. The kids have been coming in covered with mud every day for the past week or so. They could not be happier!
To celebrate the first day of spring we made a wreath out of salt dough.
We cut out spring time shapes such as, butterflies, flowers, an egg, and the letters, s-p-r-i-n-g.
Since this was going to be hanging on a door that has a lot of through traffic the wreath had to be able to handle the opening and closing. Since we were going to be layering our pieces it was going to have some weight to it, so we needed to make sure we weren't going to lose any pieces.
I took this into consideration when cutting out our shapes. I placed the shapes the way I wanted them to look when the wreath would be done. I decided ahead of time that I wanted to attach the salt dough pieces to the wreath with raffia (not sure on the spelling of that word ;) ). In order to do that I needed to decide where the holes were going to be so that I could attach them in a way that made sense. In the end I didn't end up using all the pieces I cut out, but that's okay. I'd rather have extra pieces to work with than end up not having enough and not being able to finish.
Once you have made you dough, see recipe below, and cut out your shapes, lay your pieces out the way you would like to see them on your wreath. Place them in a circle about the size of the wreath that you will be using so you can be sure you have enough pieces to go around.
Take a tooth pick or bamboo skewer and poke holes through the pieces where you would like to have them attached to the wreath. If you are layering the pieces, poke the hole directly through both pieces. This way they will line up perfectly when you go to assemble your wreath. Make sure you open those holes up. Turn the piece over and run the tooth pick through the opposite side to make sure the hole is clear of any doughy obstruction. Once they bake you can't do anything about the size of the hole, so make sure they are big enough to fit the raffia through if that's what your using to attach them to the wreath.
Now lay the pieces out on your baking sheet and bake on low temp, 200 degrees F, for a few hours. We did ours for about 3 -4 hours. Then I let them sit out over night for some extra drying time.
Once the pieces were dry, we chose some springy colors and got to work painting!
Now it's time to attach the pieces to the wreath! I started by tying a knot in one end and pulling it through the hole so that the raffia would go under the wreath and then come back up and go through the next hole. This will hold the piece in place securely.
I worked with a piece or two at a time. Then I would cut a new raffia piece. This made it easier than working with one long piece for the whole thing. It allowed for a more secure fit of each piece.
Continue weaving the raffia through the pieces till you have finished all of them.
You can cut the excess raffia pieces off if you want a more cleaner look. I liked the wispy pieces, so I left them.
For a wreath this size I used 2 cups of flour and 1/2 cups of salt. Mixed it together and slowly added 3/4 cup of water to the flour mixture. If it's too dry add a few drops of water at a time. If it's to wet sprinkle a little more flour on it.
For more information on salt dough look here!
Have a happy spring!