Season’s Greetings! I love that traditional greeting, and it seems a most befitting introduction to these Christmas images in seasonal splendor post. Andy Williams serenades “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” as I live and holiday, and by gosh, by golly it most certainly is.
The sight and sound of traditional holiday colors, songs, decorations and displays delight, and these images of Christmas rich in traditional trimmings are a few of my favorite things.
As the holiday pace picks up, I remind myself it will come and go like the blink of an eye. I make sure to fill the house with Christmas music, the slow cooker with scents of the season, and Dave the Builder’s Christmas cookie jar full of whatever cake mix cookie combination I come up with this week. Most of all, I am making sure not to lose sight of the true beauty of and reason for the season. That definitely brings to mind and eye images of Christmas in seasonal splendor.
Happy Holidays friends! We are T-3 to Christmas 2015, and the joy of the season is electric by way of white Christmas lights and treasured traditions. Welcome to our Home for the Holidays where the theme of comfort and simplicity is well represented.
Our tour is of the dining room and the part of the foyer decked for the holidays. The dining room, a forever work in progress, has seen several design and decor changes in 2015, and will continue to see more in 2016. The walls are devoid of artwork (the piece you see in this photo is part of the kitchen gallery wall) and the style jury is unable to reach a unanimous decision on accent rug vs. hardwood floors. The dining room isn’t the only space getting a makeover. My Mother’s Day gift from our son was paying for the new wallpaper I fell in love with at first sight but took several months to decide if I really had to have it. Turns out I did. Dave the Builder began the project, but real life obligations and unexpected circumstances stepped in and halted the foyer beautification project. Patience is not only a virtue it is a necessary tool of the trade in design and decorating.
On the Monday before Christmas, my true love gave to me. A single Santa leopard-ing
and a Christmas goose in the foyer displayed in front of the new zebra wallpaper sitting pretty (pronounce it prit-tee and it rhymes with tree. Get it? Partridge. Pear Tree).
A holiday table centerpiece of magnolia leaves and holly is indeed so Southern, so holiday, so easy and so beautiful.
Bob’s Sweet Stripes as swizzle sticks and crystal finial ornaments as wine charms? You bet!
I purchased these vintage mini framed Madonna prints for my kitchen gallery wall.
Inspiration is everywhere.
The subject matter is holiday appropriate, and the petite size of the framed prints sealed the DIY deal. Napkin rings it is!
I have collected Victorian inspired Santa Claus figurines for years. Due to the epic move aka the gift that keeps on giving, combining two households into one and the renovation of my childhood home into our new to us home, most of my Santa collection now resides in climate controlled storage. These inexpensive stand-in Santas have no great provenance or famous artist signature assigned to them, but I do love the colors and facial features of these old world replicas.
A picture is worth a thousand words, and this perfectly imperfect image serves as a visual reminder of my personal design and decorating philosophy. Perfection, style and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The life lived within a home comes alive through personal style and taste, and there is nothing more gorgeous than a home that beautifully illustrates personal style lives here. Design and decorate it with a sense of you!
Beginning next week I will be posting refreshed versions of my Places In The Home for the Holidays series. We’ll talk turkey, holiday side dish and dessert recipes, holiday table decorations, holiday home decor suggestions and deck the halls gift ideas. And just in case you are interested, at the time of this publishing we are now 20 days, 3 hours, 41 minutes and 6 seconds from Thanksgiving Day. The holiday countdown is on!
It is amazing that something intended to be delightful can be so utterly frightful. Creepy? Perhaps, but I love this vintage ventriloquist’s silent clown puppet mounted print from Curious Portraits on Etsy to use with an easel for an elegantly creepy centerpiece.
If sending in the clowns is way too creepy for your Halloween party decorating taste, perhaps the throwback mystique of vintage Halloween decorations is right up your alley. Remember these? I could not wait to comb the one or two (if you were lucky) aisles of Halloween merchandise at the local discount and five-and-dime stores looking for scary door decorations, lighted jack-o-lanterns and jointed cutouts. Halloween decorations have come along way in both design and detail since the Halloweens of the late 60s and 70s, but I still love to decorate with at least two or three vintage or vintage style ones.
Expensive is not on my Halloween party guest list. With dollar store deals, DIY ingenuity, buy more save more promos and online clearance sales starting sooner and sooner in the season, your Halloween bogeyman boogie down get together can be an affordable affair.
Fabric remnants in traditional or transitional Halloween colors and patterns make great party everythings from tablecloths to designer trick-or-treat bags. Thrift stores are an excellent place to haunt in search of fab-boo-lous fabrics and garments for party decorating and Halloween costumes.
Glitter tulle and glitter pumpkins set a glimmering festive table. For scatter decorations, fill clear glass candle holders from the Dollar Tree with decorative black sand. Drop in a battery operated votive, a couple of spray painted lotus pods in your favorite eerie color and drape cherry Twizzlers from the sides, and poof! Halloween decoration magic. The Twizzlers add just the right amount of deliciously devilish impact.
A wide variety of free printables in all levels of Halloween spook, scare and spirit for treats, potions, hang tags, invitations and tabletop decor are available on Pinterest. These hang tags from Ephemera’s Vintage Garden are great. I selected these hang tags to use as menu cards for two reasons- they are a little bit scary, a little bit vintage and a whole lot of fun, and I like the idea of saying hang tag at a Halloween party.
Places In The Home Home for the Holidays planning is in full swing. Decorative accents and accessories are going into place and company’s coming. Clearance sales making room for Black Friday deals and steals makes anticipating the decorative needs of this year’s Thanksgiving table and hitting the place order button a gobble gobble gotta have it a no-brainer.
Dave the Builder worked on the dining room redo this past weekend with success in the major improvement department! Lighter paint colors and natural light will open up a space, guaranteed. We’re hoping to have it all pulled together by next week in order to get the Thanksgiving tablescape ball rolling.
Friday night lights will apply to more than high school Friday night football games this Halloween. The flicker and glow from jack-o-lanterns, skull sconces and every tricked out decoration in-between will illuminate the evening and catch the eye of the costumed faithful.
Halloween decorating has taken on a life all its own in recent years. Decoristas leave no moss covered stone unturned, no craft store unshopped, no Halloween Pinterest board unseen in their search and shop for the ultimate get your Halloween decor on ideas. I’m a traditional old soul at heart when it comes to my Halloween decorations. We keep the scarefest very G-rated as not to spook or scare the little ones. The most frightening thing at our house is the amount of calories in the bowls and bowls of candy, but who’s counting? Black and orange rule the color palette, Monster Mash is the first tune on the Halloween playlist, and I’ve been known to break out an old pair of men’s cowboy boots, jeans, flannel shirt and stacks of yesterday’s news (0ld newspapers) creating a wicked good cowboy to help me pass out candy. Speaking of haunting hits, here’s a few of the Places In The Home Halloween house favorites.
If your ideas of Halloween pumpkin decorating finds you in the no carve pumpkin zone, fret or fright not.
Invent your very own throwback Halloween hashtag #TBH and channel decoupage days of basket purses and vintage milk cans past. Spray painted leaves, printables, old photos – get creative and test your mad Mod Podge skills. Glitter stickers, acrylic paint and a decorative furniture or curtain finial lend a designer touch and signature style to your Halloween decorations.
Stylish decorations don’t have to expensive to be impressive. Create fab-BOO-lous Halloween centerpiece magic with a couple of dollar store feather boas, a witches hat, and a rhinestone pin. You can get more bang for your harvest and Thanksgiving decorating buck by not carving the pumpkin and simply surrounding it with wow factor embellishments. Mingle twinkle lights in and around the feather boas for mood lighting. Wrap average party paper cups in high Halloween style with ribbon in your favorite designer pattern and color.
I like using fabric for foundation tablecloths and table skirting. Velvet and lace are hot trends at that moment and add an elegant, creepy edge to the festivities. I stock up on pillar candles and dollar store glass containers and cylinder vases for my Halloween tablescapes. Glitter, black beans, candy corn or food-color dyed water make great filler choices. This can I give you a hand serving bowl from Target would make a fun centerpiece anchor. Another dollar store run for Spanish moss, red apples and glow-in-the-dark insects and you’re set.
Paper lunch bags come in handy for Halloween treat bags and light the way luminaires. For treat bags, I like to glue Halloween themed printables to the front of the bags. Next, I fill each bag with a generous layer of shredded newspaper, and finish with favors and treats wrapped in glitter tulle. I cut the tulle so the ends will flow from the tops of the bags. Using a hole punch, punch a hole through the center of each bag (about 1” down from opening), thread the raffia through and tie together to seal.
Battery-operated LED votive candles produce the perfect flameless lighting for pathway luminaries. Safety first, and this option is a safe alternative to fire burning candles.
I hope one or more of these Halloween decorating ideas offers inspiration for your Halloween haunted or not so haunted house soiree.
Want, need, seasonal availability and patience in design and decorating lined up over the weekend. It was hard to contain my excitement when Dave the Builder emailed me the picture below of this display live and in person from our local Lowe’s garden center.
One white pumpkin, one greenish blue pumpkin, one ornamental cabbage and one vintage dough bowl later… well this isn’t exactly the look I had in mind. The build up to perceived pumpkin perfection may have been better than the actual great white pumpkin purchase. As it sometimes goes in the world of design and decorating, what we initially envision doesn’t necessarily translate well to space, palette, placement or in this case, pumpkin.
If at first you don’t succeed, design and decorate again, and again, and again. I think it is safe to assume all great, beautiful and stylish design and decorating does not come straight out of the box that way. I’ve lost count of the projects I have started over at the beginning, in the middle of, and heavily tweaked at the end. If it doesn’t feel right how can it look right?
I know. The client knows. The client knows I know.
Adding to, taking away from, switching up or a simple re-positioning is often the missing piece of the puzzle that brings forth the “that’s it!” look you were going for in the first place.
Tenacity, coupled with patience in design and decorating, is the power tool of the trade.
You’ve got to roll with the punches when it comes to the creative process. It’s a work in progress- an exercise in patience and pumpkin.
What presently doesn’t work will eventually come together for the next phase of the extravaganza aka Thanksgiving decorating. I am gingerly practicing pumpkin caution with these fall decorating beauties of the moment. Here’s hoping they will at least look presentable for an upcoming Thanksgiving staging session. It’s not looking too good for the one in the above image, but hope is on the table. I always take out a decorating insurance policy in the form of classic core pieces, accents and accessories.
That’s what I love about working with a good foundation and why I preach classic pieces. Strong lines, good bones, great pieces and patience in design and decorating are the tried and true hallmarks of great and lasting design and decorating.