It is hard to believe that Christmas is just ten days away. Quite frankly, I can’t even believe we have approached the end of 2016. It has been a strange year for sure and I’m ready to move onto 2017. How about you?
Every year after Thanksgiving, I get excited to make the leap into the holiday season by putting up a live tree. This year I found myself not wanting as many traditional adornments but to create more of a seasonal feel with wool blankets and candlelight. I gravitated toward natural ornaments as well.
I know it is hard to believe that this is a restrained Christmas, but it is! Especially on the tree…
I felt like having the Christmas tree right in the center of the room. It is not totally practical but I love how it lights up the space and sits among the other plants. Do I dare say almost like a conservatory? I decorated the tree organically with plants too! Live air plants, succulent terrarium ornaments, cotton stems and vintage arrows are the stars. You can find the live ornaments for sale at the West End Garage. Obviously these “ornaments” don’t have to be packed up next month which is fantastic!
I did pull out a few favorite vintage glass balls to create this vignette. All month, there has been a cozy, warm glow from every corner which feels very seasonal.
Have you jumped on the ceramic tree trend of the 70s and 80s? These nostalgic trees have been very hot here. Mine was made by my great-grandmother originally for my grandmother. She made one for everyone in my family back then. The tree strikes a chord with me as it is reminiscent of my childhood Christmases. Anytime we went to a relative’s house during the holidays, they always displayed Nana’s tree…and usually still do. Who knew it would be so trendy 30 years later?
Wishing you and yours a merry and bright holiday season!
Aside from tree ornaments, there are very few things we pulled out of storage to create a warm, seasonal home. Instead we opted to use everyday and season-less items with just a hint of Christmas ambiance in a relatively traditional color palette.
Our decor this year is very organic with the exception of the vintage chippy mirror and salvaged pillars. The blooming paperwhites whimsically frame a live succulent wreath. Why go for evergreens when you can have succulents? You must ask yourself.
Preserved boxwood topiaries add a bit of formality as they anchor the ends of the mantel plus they will last for years.
I continue to obsess over cotton stems. I simply laid them on their side to create a nice, full garland across the mantel.
Fresh holly from the yard nestles amongst the cotton.
Firewood is accompanied by a nearly blooming Christmas cactus.
The firewood tea light candle holder adds just a bit of warmth to the holiday display.
How are you decorating your mantel this holiday season?
Many of these items and similar ones are available at The West End Garage.
Bonus: they can easily transition into the new year with the omission of the holly and ornaments!
With the fear of frost looming at the end of October, we had to come up with a suitable winter home for our plant collection which was taking up residence outside and our deck.
They’re now sitting pretty in our living room amongst my favorite pair of vintage chairs.
We came up with a game plan to extend our sunny bay windowsill in order to accommodate the plants and my favorite vintage pots, bowls and vases. We started with fantastic weathered old 1×6 lumber that has almost a barnwood-like quality. We needed 6 – 5 foot boards in total. The boards previously made up a section of simple post and beam fencing in our yard. Each was stripped down to expose the worn grain. Two boards were paired together to make a 12 inch deep shelf. Three sets of boards were attached vertically to one another to create a 3-tier shelf system.
Plumbing pipe shelving is not a new concept but we came up with our own simple plant stand version using pipes and fittings to connect the unit. There are 2 connecting points on each shelf therefore we used a total of 4 – 9 inch plumbing nipples and 8 flanges which screw into the wood. These also double nicely as book ends. The plumbing materials were the most expensive part of this DIY project.
We decided on a set of simple 7 inch turned legs for the bottom which cost less than $5 each at Lowe’s. The raw wood of the legs and shelves received an application of hemp oil for a durable water repellent topcoat which also left a subtle stain highlighting the wood grain.
The plants have happily been relocated to the new plant stand where they are enjoying the expansive window and, normally, bright light.
These snaps are from this morning during a dreary, cold November rain. I love the mix of terra cotta amongst the saturated colors in the kilim rug and mohair chairs – all vintage finds of course. Such a cozy new space!