Monday, December 21, 2009

Decorating for Christmas


I've been meaning to post photographs of the house all decked out for the holidays for several weeks now, but between long workdays and even more demanding nights and weekends (I can't remember my social calendar being this full since, well, ever!), I've only just gotten around to uploading the pictures. In an effort to work with what I've got, I didn't go out and buy all new decorations this year -- though I'll readily admit I was tempted, especially since the color scheme in the old house (largely browns and golds, with some red and green accents) is so different from the color scheme in the new house (primarily blue and white, with a strong dose of metallics for good measure). Accordingly, I can't say that the end result represents precisely the look I was going for, but I'm happy overall with how everything turned out, especially in light of my limited time to devote to decorating this month.


I'll admit that I love a real Christmas tree; however, between my allergies and my neatnik nature, real trees don't exactly love me. My compromise then is to pick up a lovely spruce wreath every December at Whole Foods for the front door; that way, I get a bit of that gorgeous smell every time I walk in the door and the mess (and my hay fever) stays outside where it belongs.


I love the look of gorgeous garlands draped dramatically down a curved staircase. Alas though, this year I couldn't find one that suited both my taste and my budget, so I simply made do and threaded a few light strands around the banister. Hopefully I'll be able to score a few garlands on the cheap during the post-Christmas sales. So while my light installation isn't exactly gorgeous during the day, at night it beautifully frames the lighted Christmas tree, drawing you into the great room.


The dining room is where most of the new holiday items found a home. Inspired by the many images of gorgeous chandeliers bedecked with graceful ornaments that I've seen this year, I picked up a few sets of inexpensive snowflake ornaments from Target to outfit the chandelier. The mirrored Christmas trees (which I love -- they're truly impressive in person!), beaded runner and mercury glass votives are also from Target. The tablecloth is by Marimekko and available at Finn Style.


A close up of the snowflake ornaments. I initially started with just 6, but added another layer after deciding that it looked a bit underdone.


I pulled a similar trick in the breakfast nook, only this time I went with larger mercury glass ornaments (also scored at Target) that I rehung using inexpensive ribbon. Since this chandelier is much smaller, I thought it could handle just a few larger ornaments. The beaded snowflake runner is also from Target. Next year, I'm going to try and add a few lights and/or ornaments to my topiary for a bit more festive flair.


The mantle was decked out in our Christmas stockings (which I purchased at Pottery Barn several years ago) -- and yes, even the pets get their own stocking. I'm hoping to replace these in the next year or two with a bespoke set in silver, white and blue to coordinate better with my new family room.


The Christmas tree, with Olivia sleeping underneath it (all the animals love the Christmas tree and spend the month of December camped out underneath it -- I assume they're attracted to all the sparkling lights). You'll notice my tree doesn't really have a theme; rather, the ornaments are a mishmash of heirlooms (I have several sets from both grandmothers), childhood favorites and new purchases. While I adore the look of a well-curated Christmas tree, with ornaments in only one or two different colors, in practice I can't part with my own rag-tag collection, which bring back fond memories of childhood and my grandmothers.


My attempts at a high quality shot (which was supposed to end up on our Christmas card) of Olivia underneath the Christmas tree were largely fruitless. That said though, doesn't she look adorable all curled up in her pink bed and wearing her pink coat?

And what about you? Did you go all out and deck the halls this year? If so, please send me your photos -- I'd love to share them here at Odi et Amo.

24 comments:

Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

You have the prettiest entry way! I am sooo coveting your rug.

Southern Aspirations said...

I did not go all out but am beginning to get a sense of what going forward. For example, decided I want a lot more boxwood wreaths indoors! I did, however, purchase a ridiculously large wreath (60 inches) for the front archway/entry porch from Frontgate and I love it. They have a lot of "faux" garland on sale right now and the quality seems pretty good. Planning on getting more next year (I hope at least!)

Anonymous said...

I love your house, and I'm so mad at the 18 children in my class who hacked up their lungs in my face all week. They are the reason I missed your ugly sweater party :(

-Sarah

Sarah said...

It looks so festive! Love the real wreath, sorry about your allergies:( Huge fan of the hanging ornaments from the chandeliers...so pretty! Have a great holiday!

MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Love your banister, especially! Twinkle, twinkle makes me happy!!

Isabella & Max Rooms said...

"neatnik"...what a great word, I suspect it applies to myself as well!

You have the most wonderful banister, sweeping down, and love the ornaments hung from the light fixtures. I thought of doing this but didn't get around to it...yours look great. I'll have to remember this for next year.

It all looks beautiful and festive! Janell

Nichole said...

It looks lovely!

Dumbwit Tellher said...

Averill your home took to Christmas decorating just like I would of expected; simply beautiful. I am partial to Miss Oliva. She would be the perfect package underneath the tree. I wish you and Dave a spectacular Christmas. I ended up flying to WA on Sunday. My father called to say he didn't think mom would live past the holidays and wanted me to come home now. I got a tree up but that is about it for this year. I think it's a first. Definitely not the Christmas I had hoped for and I know yours will be a wee bit different as well. Some changes are hard no matter how small or large. Merry Christmas Averill x deb

Christy said...

It looks so beautiful, cozy, festive and inviting! I love it! I hope you and Dave have a wonderful Christmas filled with lots of warmth and good cheer! I just love your new Target ornaments on both chandeliers - so gorgeous and sparkly. And I am sure those mirrored trees look so pretty at night too! I'll email you my photos now, of course. I LOVE Christmas decorations!

Kitty said...

I love Olivia's Santa suit! Spot and Lucky have outgrown theirs, so I always enjoy them on other pups. The house looks great. Best doormat ever! I hope you have a magical Christmas! Love, kitty.

Southern Aspirations said...

PS- I bought Kaylee the same pink coat!

Quotidian Grace said...

The photos don't really do the house justice. It really looks stunning for Christmas!

sarah @ realestatestyle said...

Averill, your pup is so cute! I love the outfit!! Also, your house really looks great. I did a little decorating. I do have mostly blues and greens, so that is the theme of my tree. Over the past few years I have been collecting cheap teal and light green ornaments. {Love that runner in your front foyer} Merry Christmas!

Kara said...

Everything looks beautiful! I know what you mean about pup pics. I tried last year to capture both pups by the tree but it just didn't work.

Liz @ It's Great To Be Home said...

It looks fabulous!! Our cats are just like your pups - they have been camped out under the tree for a month now!

Couture Carrie said...

What a gorgeous (and perfectly decorated) home you have, darling A! Love the xmas lights on the stair in particular!

xoxox,
CC

SogniSorrisi said...

Everything looks great!

Sanity Fair said...

Averill - thanks for the well wishes. I'm so relieved to be back!
Your entry way/stair is GORGEOUS! I just love the use of space/light and the curved bannister (looking very nice with the lights). Such a fan of the blue/white/silver Christmas color theme, and you've done it so nicely here. Wishing you a very happy, homey Christmas in your first Christmas in the new house! I hope it is filled with much joy.
-Skyla

Laura@JourneyChic said...

It looks great! I also love sentimental ornaments. In an ideal world I'd have space for two trees - one more "designed" and one with all the ornaments I've collected over the years.

annechovie said...

Your house looks fantastic, Averill. Olivia is adorable - priceless outfit. Merry Christmas!

twenty eight said...

I love your blue dining room with all the silvery snowflake pieces!

pk @ Room Remix said...

It's very hard to believe you haven't even lived here very long! It all looks great - your foyer is fantastic. A very Merry Christmas to you, Averill!

Style Redux 2 said...

Everything looks wonderful.

Nishant said...

You have the prettiest entry way! I am sooo coveting your rug.
Work from home India

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails