my Home for the Holidays
This year has had a lot of ups and downs, so in preparation for the holidays I tried not to create any unnecessary stress. I decided to decorate my own home using a soft pallette and integrating things that I already have displayed rather than going on a christmas decorating bender (which I usually do). This made the process easier and less stressful, and the result simple, relaxed, and to me, beautiful.
Vintage bottles I already had on an office shelf got a dose of holiday with some mini vintage ornaments.
My "mantle" always has urns and votives on it, so some fresh garland and homemade accents did the trick...
One of those accents was a little snowscape I threw together in a glass hurricane.
My antique bread bowl on our kitchen counter wasn't going to go anywhere, so I filled it with moss, air plants, vintage ornaments, and tealights. I am so pleased with the way it turned out, I can't wait to replicate it for my clients!
Each year I try to fit an enormous tree into our tiny home, which usually results in some kind of catastrophe. I cover it in handmade bows, yards of ribbon, and color coordinated ornaments. It's always lovely, but a lot of work. This year, I took a step back and opted for a smaller tree in a pretty urn. It had just enough room for all of my favorite ornaments which makes it a bit simpler, but also more personal.
I like the look of empty space, so I have this old empty frame hanging above our bed. For Christmas, I hung this simple but gorgeous wreath (made out of beaded and rhinestone Indian fabric) in the middle. It was a handmade gift from my friend Stacy, so it's extra special.
I've been wanting a new light fixture over the bed for awhile now, and the holidays presented the perfect opportunity to play around with the one I have. A box full of large vintage ornaments and voila! Instant chandelier update. I might even leave it like this.
I love to read, and have recently resorted to leaving piles and stacks of books all over the floor. I love the way they look, and can dig through them whenever I need something new or something to loan. Rather then boxing them up, I plunked my mini bedroom tree right on top of them. The books take up the space where presents would go and that makes me very happy!
Merry & Bright Ideas
I'm always looking for a different way to decorate for the holidays. Each year I change things up a bit, constantly searching for ideas that will keep my holiday decor fresh and interesting...
Here are some fabulous holiday decorating ideas that anyone can create:
A Really Good Read...
"The point of decorating, as far as I can tell, is to create the background for the best life you can have... starting with what you want your house to do, how you want it to make you feel..."
I recently finished reading The Perfectly Imperfect Home by Deborah Needleman, founding editor of Domino Magazine. I'm ashamed to say that when I first cracked the book open, I was a little disappointed to see all watercolor illustrations and no photos. Yes, I am one of those lazy people who often buy design books, drools over pages and pages of photos, and rarely read the accompanying paragraphs.
However, the beauty of the illustrations in Needleman's book (aside from their actual beauty-they really are pretty) is that they force you to read what she's written. What she's written is a concise, witty, brilliant handbook for decorating the home.
The Perfectly Imperfect Home is full of funny anecdotes, experienced wisdom, imaginative observations, and even matter-of-fact instructions, such as the proper way to fold a bath towel. Not to worry; One of the best parts about this book is that she delivers all of her guidelines and advice with a grain of salt: the understanding that no home is perfect and rules are made to be broken. This allows us to move freely across the boundaries of her decorating parameters, leaving the reader (or me) with the comforting confirmation that some of the best parts of our homes are their imperfections.
Here are some of my favorite insights from the book:
"The simple secret is making sure that every decorating decision contributes to the creation of beauty and comfort. Beauty to uplift our senses (to transcend the mundane) and comfort to make us feel taken care of (to embrace us in the mundane)."
"An element of quirkiness in your decor shows that you do not take decorating, or, by extension, yourself too seriously."
"Fortunately, decorating is about trying to bring our desires in line with reality."
"Good decoration solves problems elegantly. A stylish home is highly functional and reflects the best possible look for your life, budget, and mode of living (even your peculiarities), and the problems and advantages of the place you live in."