Autumn is a beautiful season with a unique colour palette. Far from the frosty shades of winter or the vivid ones of summer and spring, autumn colours range from warm gold to soft auburn to bright red, and all shades in between. Rather than letting the beauty of this season simply “fall”, why not cherish it?
Autumn bunches are a pretty, easy and flexible decoration that require no special talents or items. All you really need is the season itself, and a ribbon or two. Because they aren’t as large as regular flower bunches, autumn bunches can be tied to baskets, hung from windows or car mirrors, or feature on their own. You can choose from a variety of plants and colour ranges. So rather than watching autumn fade away, why not make something out of it?
[Edit]Steps Gather the things you’ll need. Remember that there’s no strict list; you can mix and match what you like. You can gather a variety of differently sized and coloured autumn leaves, or make them all identical. It’s generally best to stick with medium sized to small leaves though, as you want the bunches to be graceful, not oversized and untidy. As for autumn plants, you can take your pick depending on where you live; pine cones, berries or flowers. Make sure all of your items stick to a colour palette; typically, you’ll be looking for a range of auburn, browns, gold and reds. Make sure that the ribbon you select adds the ultimate touch – a deep red or gold ribbon, or perhaps a striped or checked one, will be perfect. When gathering your items, remember the following: Your flowers should be removed from sunlight as soon as they are cut so that they will dry with their colours preserved. Your flowers should also not be fully mature; else they will lose their petals quickly. Dry your flowers. You can use the microwave technique for drying daises or roses, or tie your flowers in small bunches and hang them upside down in a dark, dry area such as an unused closet. Allow your flowers to dry for two to three weeks. Yes, this takes time and patience, but it ensures that your bunch lasts longer and makes it look all the more attractive. Dry your autumn leaves. In the meantime, take care of your autumn leaves. There are various methods for drying and preserving autumn leaves, and they don’t take the same amount of time as flowers, so get to work. You can choose to: Microwave them. Try microwaving your leaves until they’re completely dry, between double layers of paper towels. Be careful, though, as they could catch on fire. Use wax paper. Place a leaf between two pieces of wax paper, place a towel on top and press it with an iron to seal the wax paper. Do both sides and then cut around the leaf. Carefully peel the wax paper off. Soak them in glycerine solution. Mix glycerine and water so that it’s one part glycerine and two parts water - you'll need about one cup of solution. Pour the solution into a flat pan, place the leaves in and put some kind of weight (such as a plate) on the leaves to keep them submerged. Soak them for 2-6 days and then dry them gently with a paper towel. This method helps keep the leaves more flexible. It also helps to spray the leaves with hairspray once you’re done with drying them, to keep them preserved. Dust your leaves with glitter to enhance their beauty. Shades of gold, silver or white are all great colours to add. This is optional. Arrange your bunch. The hardest part - waiting – is over, and your bunches will be complete in minutes. Gather up your flowers and leaves and work on arranging them how you would like. Keep in mind the colours and sizes and what kind of look you’re trying to achieve – graceful, pretty, bright? Be gentle and carefully with your plants. Tie them with ribbon. Once your bunch is perfect, carefully tie it with your ribbon. To secure the bunch, you may want to tie it with thin but strong string first, because the silkiness of the ribbon may not hold the bunch together as well. Then tie the ribbon around it for decoration. You can simply tie it and let the two sides of ribbon dangle, or tie it in a bow. You could also thread small charms or beads along your ribbon, which work especially well if you’re going to hang the bunch up. Let the bunch dry, if you like. You can keep the bunch in a cool, dark and dry area for a week or so to ensure it is preserved and dried properly. Enjoy! You can make several bunches, drying flowers at different periods, and then use them to decorate your house for a special occasion. Or you can hang these bunches from your window, or car mirror, or add them to a gift or basket for that final autumnal touch.
[Edit]Tips You can make bunches for any season; simply follow these instructions but replace them with different colour themes and plants. You can braid two ribbons together and then tie the bunch up to add a special touch. You could try gathering scented plants so that the bunch smells pretty as well. Be careful when handling your bunches. [Edit]Warnings Delicate flowers may not respond well to some methods of drying, so remember to be gentle. Supervise children while they do this activity. Leaves can catch fire in the microwave, so be careful. [Edit]Things You'll Need Autumn leaves Glitter (optional) Ribbon 2 to 4 autumn plants String Place to dry flowers Strong, thin string Iron/Glycerine/Wax paper (or other method for preserving leaves)