Lifestyle

How to “Wreath” like Hilton Carter

The coolest fall wreaths you can create yourself

Chic DIY fall wreaths with Hilton Carter and CBChic DIY fall wreaths with Hilton Carter and CB2
We turn to “Plant Daddy” Hilton Carter for all of our plant-related predicaments, from his favorite planters to repotting 101. So when fall decorating and botanicals began to cross our minds, we knew exactly where to go.

Our Infinity Wreaths are gorgeous on their own, but part of their perennial appeal lies in their simplicity. Those minimalist silver circles are ripe for a good DIY, like this cheery and colorful holiday wreath Cornell Florist created last holiday season. This year, we enlisted Hilton Carter’s help, and sent him an Infinity Wreath with the simple direction to design whatever he wanted. (Well, almost whatever. We struck down the bird skulls and cobwebs idea “for Halloween.”)

“I really wanted to create something that leaned a bit moodier, but also reflected the time of year: FALL,” Carter explains. “With the style and color of the wreath, I felt more structural florals would be best. Given that the Infinity Wreath has its own beauty, it was necessary to let some of the three rings shine on their own.”

Speaking of structural florals, Carter was deliberate in his plant styling choices for this wreath: King Proteas, Magnolias, Pampas Grass with a sprinkling of Bunny Tails, Billy Balls and Globe Amaranth. “I’ve always been a huge fan of the shape and texture of the King Proteas, and once you let them dry out, they take on a second life,” he says. “I wanted the King Protea to be the main focus, and thought it would be best to have it hugged by the leaves of a magnolia and kissed by a magnolia bloom. Beneath it all, I dressed some pampas grass along the wreath, which helped to add a little softness and balance the hardness of the King Protea and Magnolia.”

To learn how to recreate Hilton Carter’s stylish fall wreath, read on, or for more of his green thumb expertise, click here.

Materials needed and florals used

  • Infinity Wreath
  • Wire cutters
  • 22-gauge floral wire
  • Shears
  • Floral tape
  • 1 dried King Protea
  • 3 Magnolia stems
  • 4 Pampas Grass stems
  • 20 Bunny Tail stems
  • Additional florals: Billy Balls, Globe Amaranth and Eucalyptus
Step 1

Step 1

Lay the wreath down on a clean surface and place florals where you can imagine them going. This will give you a good idea of how everything should be arranged and will look once complete.

Step 2

Step 2

Place down your first layer of florals. For this wreath, it’ll be the pampas grass because I’ll want that to be the backdrop for the entire layout. Using your wire and wire cutters, cut a 3″ piece of wire and wrap it tightly around the stem of the pampas grass and your wreath.

Step 3

Step 3

Once your pampas grass is secured to the wreath, place your King Protea at the far end of the wreath, but let a little pampas grass lead the way. Again, using your wire and wire cutters, cut a 3″ piece of wire and wrap it tightly around the stem of the Protea and your wreath. Repeat this step with the Magnolia stems.

Step 4

Step 4

Stack your Bunny Tails in one hand as if making a bouquet. Make it so that it’s heavier at the top and thins out at the bottom. Take your floral tape and pull off a 3″ piece. While wrapping it around the stems of your Bunny Tails, fold and twist the floral tape to make it become adhesive. Once taped together, take the Bunny Tail bouquet and place it at the end of the floral design where your pampas grass starts. Using your wire and wire cutters, cut a 3″ piece of wire and wrap it tightly around the stems of your Bunny Tails and your wreath.

Pull off a small piece of floral tape or rope and wrap that around the wire you placed on the Bunny Tails and wreath. This will help give it a cleaner look. Continue cleaning it up by cutting away any wire that’s sticking out.

Step 5

Step 5

Add your final touches. For this wreath, I used Billy Balls and Globe Amaranth to add a pop of color. Take these stems and just work them through the other florals. You can use floral tape, wire or even a glue gun to secure them. Your wreath is complete! Hang it securely from your door or above your fireplace and enjoy.

This interview has been edited and condensed. Photos by Hilton Carter; portrait by John Davis.

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