Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Home for the Holidays

The holidays have always been my favorite time of the year. I do love when it is over and the air is warming... and I do love the crisp breeze of coming Fall, but the colors, lights, smells, foods, friends, family, songs, events and decorating of the Christmas season can never be replaced! I decorated the house a week before Thanksgiving this year. That seems early even for me but my dear Auburn Tigers have stolen my heart this year (SEC Champions- War Eagle!) and I had to plan my decorating around their football schedule. I know, I know.
Anyways, my last post was a while ago and I was talking about these amazing stockings I found on Etsy. I have now hung them in their new home and they love it there ( Mr. Mister hung lights on the outside of the house this year and they look fantastic, and I have displayed my Vietri Christmas plates in the kitchen. Other than that, most of my Christmas decor is repeated from last year- but I just love my rustic Christmas theme and don't see myself steering from it anytime soon. Here are some pics of our home for the holidays.

Here is my tree and mantle. I have started collecting Old World Christmas ornaments but only have those that were given to me. I am planning to buy more after the season this year, when they go on sale. I have a good 20 that I want in the future and hope that next year the tree won't be so bare. Do not note that there are only 2 gifts under the tree. But do note the awesome stockings on the mantle, and the clip of The Family Stone playing on the tube. :)

I picked this wreath up at Target. I love the Smith & Hawkens line that they carry- and the seasonal wreaths are always a treat. I had moss covering my buffet last year but it was a bit messy and I was a bit lazy this year. So this time around, you got pinecones & birch-covered candles.

 The Vietri Santa plates were a gift from my mother-in-law. I love that they are each different and I wanted to display them. Hanging them on the wall seemed like the most logical answer for showcasing them.

Mr. Mister put lights on our house this year. I love them!! They decorate the house in a very simple, sleek way. No mess, straight lines. And boy, are they bright! Wreaths are hung with brown ribbon on the windows. I allowed hubs to leave out the bonus room window this year, but I have already decided it will have to be added into the decor next year. As will the tree in the yard, and the spotlights will need some tweaking so they showcase the wreaths on the windows a little more. But I won't start the Honey-Do list just yet... ;)

And as a little bonus to my Christmas post, here is a picture of Husband and I during a Heisman (Go Cam!) Party last Saturday. The owner of this fabulous tree spent a lot of time, ahem, and money, putting this puppy up. 300+ lights, all Auburn ornaments, Auburn shakers, and pictures of friends and family at past Auburn games make this a one-of-a-kind tree. The presents are wrapped in orange and blue, and the tree topper says it all.

Here is her tree from afar, in addition to an Auburn mantle-orange roses and burnt orange, frosted ornaments. I really love the little hunting souvenir above the fireplace. War Cam Christmas, everybody!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tis the Season

I have been ridiculously bad about posting lately. Seriously, awful. Life has been crazy (I know, who's hasn't, right?) and I have not found much time to sit down at the computer to do anything but bills and work. Blah. Anyways, with no further adieu, here are some holiday homes that look spectacular for the most wonderful time of the year. In the meantime, I am scrambling pics together of my house this season. We are also in the process of completing our home office and I am ready to tackle MY room as a 2011 resolution (among many other things!) so I know I will have many posts in the near future of my abode in progress.

Rustic, woodsy winter decor is all the rave in my heart. I love a warm, soft glow in holiday decor that only comes from the softer colors. Nothing too bright and yes, I will say it, green and red. In the winter, I want wood beams in my ceilings (ok, I want those all the time), plaid and wool pillows, winter bedding, antlers, moose prints, and shearling. Black labs, a home library, pine trees and snow. Toboggans, a fire pit, oh, geez. Who am I kidding?! For those of you who have a suburban home AND a mountain home, count your blessing... or give me the spare keys.

I love the magnolia leaves as a different trend to the traditional pine. Flanking trees in massive, weathered pots really adds another spin on a classic. I love the modern and bold prints on the chair/pillow... and I see my beams, again!

There are many things I love about this room. First off, the wallpaper and the high chair molding. Yum. Secondly, this chandelier is not what I would normally gravitate towards, but it works so well in this traditional, classic room. And although I don't like red and green overload, the colors are used perfectly in this room- poinsettias, fruit & boxwood. The use of every day items in holiday colors looks beautiful. I love that the tablescape is made out of lemons, boxwood & ribbon.

The green and yellow ornaments hanging from the banister are actually small fruit pinned into a foam mold. The lemons used in the dining room appear again here on the front door and in table arrangement. And check out these gorgeous floors, would ya!?

One easy way to add rustic elements to your holiday decor? Natural colored gift wrapping paper. You could even use other papers that look like natural elements such as birchwood or linen. Tie them with a burlap bow and you have brought some outdoors, in!

Add holiday color and coordinate your tree by changing the throw pillows and using similar colors in wrapped gifts under the tree. I love the use of different green tones throughout this room- and no red at all.

Of all things natural, I think this is as close as you will get in a room with heat! Is there anything I don't adore in this room? I feel the holiday without a bit of color, and due to the fact that it just plays up the Winter theme versus the Christmas theme, it can stay put through January/February (well, down here in the South. For those further north, even longer!).

Hello love. Please come home.

True hardwood flooring, lovely beams, a not-too-perfect tree, minimal ornaments & never obnoxious gift wrapping= a truly elegant, natural non-stuffy holiday.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Patterns on Parade

Good evening chic lovers! I have yet another before and after to show you. A year ago, I came across an article in BHG's Special Interest Publication of Decorating. It was the Summer 2009 issue to be exact. The article was about photo collages using fabrics. I loved the symmetry of the 8x10 matted black and white frames, and I adored the use of fabrics in the background of different sized pictures. I immediately thought, THIS is what my dining room is supposed to be in life. However, due to my life taking over my time, my dining room only found its place here on Earth this past weekend with the help of Mr. Mister, my husband. He took the Type A time and dedication to hang my nine frames in a perfect scale for the room. Here is my how to and where to for this project:

Frames: Pottery Barn Wood Gallery Single Opening Frames in Black $23.00 each

Fabric: the green/gold fabric was left over from my curtains made for the living room, while the red/beige trellis fabric came from Hobby Lobby.

I took wedding and honeymoon pictures and had them printed in various sizes, all in black in white.

As for the how to,
1) I simply cut fabric in 12x12 squares and taped them to the back of the mattes for each frame.
Tips: Make sure you cup the fabric in even, symmetrical squares or it will all look "off" in the frame with the pictures. Also, make sure to pull the fabric taute so there are no wrinkles or slouchiness in the frame.
2) For the pictures, I took double sided tape and literally tape each picture in place- right smack on top of the fabric. The double sided tape helps the pictures sit flush against the fabric on all sides.
3) As for hanging, its a good idea to lay all of the pictures on the floor and arrange them how you want them to be once they are hung. Since we did 3 rows of 3, I had to decide how many inches I wanted in spacing between each picture, horizontally and vertically. I am not by any means a mathmatician so I don't know if we just got there by coincidence or not, but my pictures wound up being hung exactly 24" from nail to nail for each frame.
4) Take note: I am not very happy with how stark the white mattes look in our dining room considering there is no white at all in the room- its all in ivory. So I will be looking for new mattes, which shouldn't be too difficult to change, just extra irritating.

Either way, here is the before and after of a reborn dining room.

This is the dining room before the house was finished being built. The hardwoods were not even stained at this point.

Here is the dining room before I had anything done yet. I bought these beautiful silk, ivory panels from JCPenney right as they were being discontinued. I think they were about $75 a panel. I later added a floral chair in the corners to flank each side of the window. The floral chairs added much needed color to the room. I bought the chairs for $200 each at Pier1. Mr. Mister hated them but as he has watched the room transform, he has stopped talking about them (which necessarily doesn't mean it still doesn't like them). They really look great when pulled up for a dinner, too. Nice and chic. The dining room table and chairs were bought from BrambleNow! thanks to friends with wholesaler benefits. I got the whole set for $1200. Yup. Best part? The mahogany & black together in one piece. It allows much more to happen in the room.

Here are fabric swatches of what I used within the picture frames. All of the colors were pulled from the chairs. Coordinating colors and different fabrics are key to a not-too-matchy design.
What's great about this project is that I could get 2 similar prints out of one fabric- just use both sides.

And here is the finished product. I am so happy with how it turned out. The dining room already has a very high ceiling but the frames exagerate the room to fabulous heights. Notice: the husband-hated floral chair in the corner that I happen to L.O.V.E. There is a different fabric on it's backside. It is mucho buenita.

I did 3 8x10 pictures with no fabric, 2 4x6 pictures in the green/brown stripe, 1 5x7 in the green/brown stripe, 1 5x7 in the beige w/ red trellis fabric, and 1 5x7 and 1 4x6 in the same trellis fabric, just using the alternate side.

The room was very dull in color before, but is now vibrant and warm.

Now if I could just learn how to cook something edible enough to serve in this fine dining space...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tom Jones' Jacks

A few years ago, a friend of mine introduced me to Tom Jones and his amazing pottery Jacks. There is a waiting list for these beauties and they sell out every year. However, anyone can get on that waiting list and if you take a trip to Fairhope, Alabama, you can visit the shop where all the magic happens. Each year, Tom makes only a number of pumpkins. They are unique, whimsical and one of a kind. Each year, the Jack comes in a certain color too, so once they are gone, they are g.o.n.e. Take a look at Tom Jones Pottery and the following pics of the past few years' plump pumkins...






Happy Halloween! It finally feels like Fall!