Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas Decorating, Act Two - SHINY + RUSTIC

I recently told you about our Christmas tree and outdoor decorating. Today, I'm back to share with you the final act of our little saga -- or, as I call it, SHINY + RUSTIC (yes, I'm saying that a dramatic, humorous Shakespearean tone).

We're already surrounded by tones of brown and tan, neutrals (and I kept the lighter blues...frosty and wintry, is where my head is). I introduced some greens -- lighter, more pea green/puce tones as well as natural evergreens. The only red I used came in the form of accents -- through my cute "JOY" pillow ($1 at Target), stockings, and on my "card clothesline." Otherwise, the dining room boasts more than enough red (ick) on its own. It sounds like a hodgepodge, and maybe it is, but I also sprinkled a handful of clementines around for a traditional nod to the past while throwing in a pop of modern color.

Here's the dining room --

It's really a simple variation on what I did for autumn. I kept the gauzy scarf (there's the 2nd scarf! See the tree post for the first...) as a runner and the antique drawer for the centerpiece, as well as a couple of candles and stuff, but otherwise, I just sprinkled in some greenery, pine cones, clementines, mercury glass...and some Christmas magic, of course.

I tried to keep it simple with a few smaller vignettes. Here's my "sweater" vase, an antique creamer with a clementine stuck in (my people were dairy farmers...but, yeah, the orange makes no sense, but 'tis cute), and the musical snow globe my mom bought for Hadley last year. LOVE all the texture just on that thing alone, with its rough-hewn reindeer, cozy soft fabric, and leather and wood accents.

On the other side is a little woodland vignette. I bought the "tree" on clearance at Target, stood a pine cone up to appear tree-like, and put a couple of bottles and a more bronzy mercury glass candleholder (under a buck at Goodwill!) in a random pattern. Oh, and the bottle with the greenery is from my family's own dairy farm -- just sayin'.

And for the sideboard, all I really did was put a huge, green hurricane filled with silver bead garland and a candle on a vintage cake stand, a cute (but pitiful) plant and mercury votive on some magazines, and a vintage teacup full of cinnamon sticks throughout the front.

One of these days, I'll clean everything behind this stuff off, but I like most of it too much -- books, old and new; Waterford sugar/creamer set; a McCoy pottery teapot; a very old pewter pitcher; booze in case we're ever cool enough to have anyone over (along with the mixer)...oh, and Hadley's first piece of art. What's not to love?

And here's the living room --

We pick up the white "urchin" whenever our toddler "urchin" gets interested in poking his eyes out with it. Oh, and this is yet another "use whatchya got - decorate with a scarf" instance. (Third. Bam.)

Our "landing strip" between the living room and dining room, which houses our "Card Clothesline." For incoming Christmas cards (and a wayward Santa hat), I strung some twine between two nails, added some clothespins and a couple of stockings, and voila. We're also putting cards on the opposite side so the dining room doesn't feel left out. :-)

Simple -- Vintage cake stand (from our wedding), twine-wrapped candleholder/vase, mercury glass + gold candleholders (I feel rebellious mixing metals here), and a handful of outdoorsy pieces (greenery, pine cones, cinnamon sticks).

Across the "strip", I mimicked the mercury glass, but piled it a bit more. (See below for details.)

My faux mantle. (No fireplace here -- le sigh.) Very understated -- just added a sprig from the tree, an orange, and a mercury glass votive, but there's just enough texture and variation to make it less than boring.

Just Hadley's stocking, hung from a shiny silver holder. I threw an orange on each holder for interest, but in the future I'll put labels or a toy representing the receiver of said stocking (this year, it would be one of his "Little People" -- either Superman (which has mysteriously gone missing) or the blond elf who looks suspiciously like Hadman). Or, maybe it's where we'll leave our Santa letters. :-)

A fun little close-up of the textural variation. Atop a stack of old magazines, I put a very vintage copy of "The Complete Home" (I bought antiquing years ago), a replica of vintage playing cards, a pine cone, a clementine, and a large mercury hurricane (which also has more pine cones and a sprig of green). Oh, and if you look closely you can see me with my red "Keep Calm and Carry On" iPhone case and gray hoodie -- the uniform of champions.

The chalkboard on our wall o' frames had been home to this lovely thought since...maybe Valentine's Day(?) --

For the holidays this year, it says this
(and probably will until Valentine's Day again; I don't look upward enough) --

And on that sentimental note, I think we'll end our little tour. How do you decorate for the holidays? Do you make it a blatant Christmas-centric thing, or do you add a bit of shimmer and "season" (I kind of did both -- red and green, and Santa's hat, of course...but it'll be easy to transition into a winter theme). Do you do bright modern (think "shiny aluminum Christmas tree"), cozy traditional (reds, greens, evergreen), or a fun hodgepodge of sentimental, hand-made stuff? I love hearing how others choose to deck their halls for the holidays.

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