Christmas balls….

Christmas balls, orbs and topiaries are all round decorations featured in cheerful holiday decorating.  They make us smile.

Here is a slightly different slant on these round designs. This orb is made from dried and fresh flowers, nuts, seeds, cones, pods, roses, pine and a top sprig of kiwi vine.  One year it sported red roses, another year…

….. tiny white sweetheart roses and fresh pine.  The main body of the orb is a textural conglomeration of whatever pods and nuts and cones suit your fancy.  Since I no longer have this, I am guessing that the reds were faux pods.  Almost all of it was put on with a glue gun.

The materials for this are an 8”D Styrofoam ball and a piece of Oasis.  First cut a slice off the bottom so it will sit.  Then, like cutting a melon wedge, cut a piece out of the Styrofoam.  With the removed piece as a guide, cut a similar shape from the Oasis to fit in the opening in the Styrofoam.  It needn’t fit perfectly – the fresh materials will hide it.  To keep the Oasis from soaking in the Styrofoam, line the opening with a piece of plastic wrap, cutting the edges to fit.  You can remove this and store the orb for another time.  Use a fresh oasis each time.

Another way to do this is with only one type of material on the main orb.  I have used fresh dusty miller held in place with pearl headed pins.  With all the serrations on the leaves, I wasn’t too sure what would happen when the leaves dried as I did not pin every little edge. Happily they just hunkered down and stayed put.

I put the design in a pretty gray pottery urn shaped vase.  There is a dramatic contrast between the Black Beauty sweetheart roses and the soft gray of the dusty miller.

Later with ranunculus I added a lively border of seeded eucalyptus sprigs which pick up the color of the dusty miller leaves.

Then, …. Are you still with me?…..I changed the base to an upside down silver vase which is almost as slender as a candle stand and has a wonderful texture of its own.

The ranunculus and Oasis removed,  I added a silver gray combination of the eucalyptus, lichen on branches, reindeer moss, almond pods and a silver piece of fungus.

Which one will you try?


About Susan

Susan Detjens is a former landscape painter, she lectures, demonstrates and runs workshops on floral design for museums, horticultural organizations and garden clubs across the US.
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3 Responses to Christmas balls….

  1. Sylvia says:

    I love this idea as you can do so much with it and tuck it into all kinds of small places that benefit from a fresh design–it could be done on any scale larger or smaller than an 8″ ball.

  2. Alexandra Donovan says:

    A seasonal favorite of mine! Excellent job!

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