My idea of the holidays is Yule. I’m 3/4 German and 1/4 Scottish so I love Celtic and Germanic traditions. Bringing evergreens into the house and using as many natural elements as I can. I also like to use what I already have. If I have something pretty I don’t want it to sit in the cupboard I want it to be out where I can see it.
The beautiful pictures are from Carly Robertson Photography
This year I used The Magnolia Company for all my garlands, wreath’s and the mini pine trees. I laid the garland along the top of a hutch and the fireplace mantels, along the railing of the front porch and draped them over the backs of my wicker swing and wicker couch. It was really easy – just lay or hang the garland then add some ribbon or a bow.
Wreaths hanging in the 2nd floor windows with ribbon and over the lights on the garage, garlands along the front railings, a swag over the front door, poinsettias tucked here and there (I always put the poinsettias in either clay pots or metal tubs I don’t like the foil they come in). Garland draped over the swing and couch and a tray of mini evergreens with a grapevine wreath around them. Take the holiday items and put them in your normal pots or incorporate them into your usual décor don’t just plop a poinsettia with foil on it by the front door and call it a day. Just drop it into a clay pot or switch out the usual plant by the front door. Tuck ribbon or trimmed branches from the Christmas tree in stuff you already have.
Pull the kids wooden (not plastic) red wagon around and fill it with poinsettias
and boxes wrapped like presents. And use natural reds and greens
like green leaves or red berries.
I hung a wreath from the railing instead of garland on the railing – I moved my lanterns from the living room to the built in seat and left the straw broom there. I love how homey it looks. Then tucked in some tree trimmings. On the window seat I have a collection of holiday trees to grouped them together and curled a ribbon through them. I wanted to add a pop of color since the trees are a natural color on the wood seat so I put a large red tray under them. The lanterns have flameless candles that I turned on for parties it’s nice to have a warm welcome at the front door. I also have a board I painted with chalkboard paint then used an old frame of my grandmothers. I tried using chalk on it but it doesn’t really come clean so I just print out any notes, menus, thank yous etc. and use that putty stuff to stick it on.
The Living Room
I put the tree where I can see it from the couch and people can see it through the window from the street. I like to use a real tree of course and different sized little white lights. I love vintage style ornaments and actual vintage ornaments. My oldest is a lamb that was my grandmothers it’s from the 1930s. I add new ones every year. I started collecting an ornament each year for my sons when they were born. And I get a new ornament for each of us from Epcot each year. Not every country will have ornaments. United Kingdom I bought a pack of pub coasters and punched holes in them and ran a ribbon through. Mexico I found little tiny sombreros. China I used little key chains that were each of our Chinese Zodiac animals. Canada was easy they had gold maple leaf ornaments and Norway has scan design ornament balls. This year was Africa and they actually had little hand made origami type safari animals.
For the topper I wanted something from nature so I bundled some silk Amaryllis and added bows around them and wrapped it all in ribbon.
Above the mantel I put a garland with ribbon, my red berry topiaries that I put in the pots I usually have on the mantel I just added burlap and satin bows so you couldn’t see the pot sticking up.
Added my Christmas teapot some votives and tree trimmings.
On the side tables and the coffee table… I put large ornaments in the white bowl that’s usually on the coffee table. I put a cool vintage silver tinsel wreath on top of a silver urn and added a birch candle. I put a red berry wreath over the plant in the white bowl I usually have on the desk. And done.
The Dining Room
It was simple – add a couple of poinsettias to an ice tub that is usually empty and set the table with my holiday dishes. Add ribbon, votives (I like to use the flameless kind that will automatically come on each night)
and a few fancy ornaments and you’re done.
I used jars of candy and cool marshmallows from Williams Sonoma, oranges studded with cloves, the trimmings from the Christmas tree, citrus, holiday towels and napkins, and ribbon. By just tucking a pretty curly ribbon and a vintage holiday towel in the corner it changes the same lamp and sugar bowl into a holiday setting. And the great thing is the tree trimmings are free, the citrus will last all season and then you can throw it away so no storage. The ribbon is cheap and can be rolled up to use again. Utilize your napkins and holiday dishes instead of buying a decoration just use what you already have that sits in a drawer all season. If you have people coming over put apple cider with mulling spices in a Dutch oven and let is simmer on low the whole time. It makes your house smell like the holidays.
The Family Room
Garland over the mantle with ribbon, flameless candles, and stockings. My old man Christmas (a nod to Oden the king of the elves) a poinsettia, and a pinecone in a pot my son made for me 22 years ago. (every now and then they actually make cool stuff. If you want to give someone a gift from your small child this one is pretty cute. Using a glue gun add Spanish moss to the opening of a small clay pot, then glue small little shinny balls in the petals of the pine cone and glue the pine cone to the moss. Done. You could white wash the pot and tie a pretty burlap or satin wide bow around it but plain is nice too). I used my round metal tray and filled it with like colored ornaments (mine are greens golds and browns) then nestled 3 live mini pine trees in burlap sacks amongst them (Magnolia Company).
Lots of simple ideas, nothing too fancy, but very warm and cozy.
That was the plan.