We go to my brother’s Hidden Hills, Calif. manse for almost all holidays, mostly because he has a large, comfortable spread which he embellishes from one end to the other with ghosts and gobblins, Easter bunnies or prancing reindeer.
But I put my moccasin-covered foot down when it comes to Thanksgiving. One of the reasons I love having Thanksgiving at my house is that the red, green and gold color motif is so conducive for autumn decorating. While Edwin wrestles with the turkey and trimmings, I style, style, style.
Call me prop-girl cause I’m crazy for country touches this time of year. I get really busy before Halloween, harvesting pumpkins, Indian corn, bowls of pomegranates, scarecrows and cute little vintage Pilgrim and Native American dolls.
And nothing sets the tone or creates fragrance like a wreath of organic leaves, pepperberries, oranges and pine cones. The binding of favorite seasonal flowers has long been a folk tradition for welcoming guests and celebrating the season. While we generally equate winter wreaths with Christmas and Christianity, floral and herb bouquets can be used by all festive homeowners to enhance their Halloween and Thanksgiving decors.
Here are a few organic wreaths I gathered, all under $100:
The autumn wreath from Wind and Weather ($45) is emblazened with fall color and flavored with slice quince and Indian corn on a twig base. It tickles the senses with the warmth of my favorite season. Hang it over the mantle and set it aglow with dozens of multi colored votive candles in glass jars.
The Merry Berry Wreath ($99) from Viva Terra smells so delicious, I place it at the bottom of my wire asket chandelier over the dining room table allowing the strands of pepperberries and eucalyptus leaves to poke through. The crisp fragrance is hard to beat and will last until I’m ready to replace it with colored Christmas balls. Viva Terra also does an amazing organic culinary wreath ($75 with a hanger; shown at top) of yummy herbs. It’s wonderful to hang in your kitchen while brainstorming your stuffing recipe.
I love the deep burgundy hues in the Oregon Wreath from Flora Pacifica ($45) a blend of preserved organic white oak with herbs like basil and dried salal. This one can take you well into the winter months.
And for something more unusual, check out the corn shuck wreath at Ruby Lane ($45). It’s clean and could be quite lovely in a modern setting.
Most wreaths can be hung on your front door unless the company tells you it is for indoor use only. While this is a lovely tradition for the winter holidays, I prefer keeping the gorgeous and fragrant autumn wreaths inside.