I made this wreath last year, but after so many door openings and closings, and being moved around when I stored the Christmas decorations, some of the pine cones fell off and others settled so what used
to be a full wreath had tons of room. I made some new pine cones to fill it out for this year, and figured this would be a good time for a tutorial on how I did it.
What you'll need:
spray paint and sealer
wire coat hanger
wire, craft rings, paper clips, or other bits you can make into a small circle
ribbon and bow to finish
I took the kids to gather pine cones along a nature path (only fallen ones, of course). But, since we live in a very sandy area, every pine cone is covered with sand. I rinsed them off, laid them out to air dry for a few hours, then oven dried them for a bit longer on a low temperature to remove the rest of the moisture and kill any bugs. I used a really, really low temperature, around the 150F mark. If you oven dry, make sure you use a low temperature and don't leave it. You don't want an oven fire.
After the pine cones are dry, spray paint them, follow with a sealer, and allow to dry. You will have to turn the pine cones at some point, and don't forget the underside.
Next, take your craft rings or bits of wire and hot glue them onto the tops of the pine cones. It doesn't matter if you get them centered. They'll just lay differently on the wreath. Don't be stingy with the glue, especially if you intend on using the wreath on your front door. It will see a lot of shaking and needs to hold up to that.
Take a wire coat hanger, form it into a circle, and untwist the top. Thread the pine cones onto the coat hanger through the loops in the top.
Arrange the pine cones as you go. It takes more than you'd think. When you can't get any more on, close the top of the hanger, make a final arrangement on the pine cones, and wrap the top and hook in a decorative ribbon. Add a bow.
Ta-da! If after a few days you notice the pine cones are moving around too much with the door opening and closing, you can add a bit of glue at different points to hold the pine cones in place.