Wreath Rustling

“Last night someone was so pathetic as to steal the wreath on our door that I had made a few days earlier.
Such pointless thieving!! If you see this on another door, let me know as I’d quite like it back!” F.B.

Taken from a post this week on  local website Nextdoor Portobello:

Very bad karma to the thief, but sadly, maybe  not so pointless . Today, the humble wreath has been upgraded into something of serious  monetary value. Wreaths are now priced anywhere from £50 to £250, unsurprising  given the amount of materials and craftsmanship involved

Propertyferret has noticed and enjoyed the surge in the creativity, beauty and consequent value  of handmade wreaths.In this neighbourhood, about six years ago , the birth of the artisanal wreath as a work of art was jump -started  by  local beauty and florist Kitten Grayson, who made and sold a few exquisite wreaths on a stall in Portobello. Nothing quite like this had been seen before, they rapidly sold out, and today Kitten presides over her successful floristry and events company https://www.kittengrayson.com.

A wreath from Kitten Grayson


This Saturday, on the trail of the missing wreath,  Propertyferret visited Harper and Tom’s flower stall  on Elgin Crescent. Florists Alex and Sophie were making up bouquets in freezing conditions, and trying to figure out whether waterproof gloves with the fingers cut off were the answer, as wool fingerless mittens just became sodden and were worse than nothing.

“Have you heard of anybody having one of your wreaths stolen”, I asked?

“Yes, I have” replied Sophie.  “We sell wreaths to most of the homes in the streets round here, and each one is usually different, so I remember them. One  day last week I saw a guy selling some very familiar wreaths on a stall on Portobello. I asked him  where he had got the wreaths, and he told me he had made them himself. I told him that this was a likely story, as it was in fact  me that had made all of them, but I did not take it any further as I didn’t think the police would be interested”

So here is an alert to all shoppers in Portobello market.  If you see some very fancy wreaths being sold off by an unfamiliar trader without a proper stall, think  about whether they may have been rustled and do not buy one. Should you recognise your own wreath – call a policeman!

A wreath displayed at Harper and Tom.


On a happier note, wreath making classes held by established  florists such as Kitten Grayson, are becoming increasingly popular, as a slightly less expensive way of having a beautiful creation hanging on your door, and also as a very enjoyable  way to spend an evening working with your hands on natural materials learning a new craft.

Last week the church of St Simon Zelotes in Moore Street Chelsea  hosted  a wreath making course as a fundraiser,  held by top florist  Juliet Glaves. www.julietglaves.com. In the candlelit stone apse of the church,  tables were laden with greenery and branches  brought in by Juliet from her flower farm in the country: spiky  branches of larch, mounds of ivy, mistletoe, rosemary, glorious bushels of fresh greenery and plump red berries.

Starting off

Spectacular results

The wreath has a history going  back to the ancient Greeks and Romans, who crowned the victors of the battlefield and competitive games with circlets of  laurel.  In the West a wreath is traditionally hung on the front door during Advent, showing that the household within is  anticipating and preparing for a joyful event, the birth of a Saviour. This appears strange when we reflect that the other main use for  a wreath is as a floral tribute on a grave, so it is both a symbol of joy through new life  but also of  death. The answer lies in the shape,  a circle with no beginning and no end, the Circle of Life, in the Christian tradition representing the triumph of eternal life over death, but carrying within it  the symbol from earlier cultures  of renewal of life through nature represented by a circle of  green leaves.

The joy of a snowy wreath this morning –  safely  inside the garden walls



By |December 11th, 2017|Uncategorized|4 Comments