December 3, 2012

Holiday decorations

I thought I'd share some photos of how I decorated my house this year for Christmas. I was getting a little tired of the same old decorations and really more tired about the same way I have been decorating for the past few years.

Anybody else get in these ruts????

So I challenged myself to think outside the garland and mix it up a bit. But here is the catch. I only wanted to use what I had or at most spend $30 on new additions.

I know. Tightwad. But I usually do better when I have to use very little money. I don't know, personal challenges get my creative juices going. See my Drop Cloth Holiday Swag for $0! Somehow frugal works for me.

I hope you enjoy. I will try to take you through as if you were visiting me! So first up is the little entrance between the double front doors and the inside door.


My son collects Nutcrackers and I got this one on clearance at the end of the 2010 season for $17. So I saved it for a year and gave it to him last year. So worth it to see his face when he got the biggest nutcracker of his life.

I sprayed some branches gold from an old tree we took down two years ago and added them in several places around the house this year.  I know crazy to keep branches but I know myself and I knew these would be used in some capacity. And this year they got used! They add lots of needed height here since we have 10-12 foot ceilings in our house. Everywhere. So I usually have to fill up a lot of visual space in a creative way.

Welcome to my Foyer!

My new free mantel! This might be the single greatest addition to the house, especially for decorating purposes. It is so nice and wide and my rustic $5 Goodwill box got some new greenery picks along with the addition of my new $5 felted sweater trees.

I added a grouping of artichokes swags that had been attached to a tiered candle holder to the front of the firebox. It added just the right amount of spark to my candle fireplace

I used pine cones a lot this year since I thought keeping the decorations on the natural side would be easier and less expensive. The gold branches started the theme and I really see why so many people like this look.

My mirror wall got a few pine cones and ribbon

This is the easiest project and only will cost you the price of 3 picks. I did this last year and I still love the look for doorknobs. All I did was lay the picks so they fanned out and then I wove the gold ribbon through the pick end and finished them with a loop to hang.  A few doorknobs got this little decoration.

Lets go to the Living room shall we?
the mantel and an eyesore

Yes you spotted the eyesore! (I hope you thought this was the eyesore and not my mantel!) But hey if you must live with a ceiling fan for a while longer while you get funds to redo the LR, then make it work! Some mercury glass bulbs and chocolaty ribbon make it look delicious.

I found this piece of wood on a stroll to pick up my daughter from school. It has been a great addition to the house. It held tiny white pumpkins for the Fall. 

I couldn't put my vintage fan and camera away for the holidays. I just love them so much that they had to stay and become part of the display.

I love using really well done faux greenery. It holds up from year to year and it looks real. Plus as we head into the Dining Room yo will see that it is useful in filling up your branch mantel.

When we moved into this house it had a mantel piece that clearly was not original to this mantel and must have been added. Why the top piece was missing is beyond me but the piece they added was hideously curvy and did not match. When we repainted the DR and I re-did the mantel, I just never put it back and filled it in with Styrofoam and those branches again. I thought I'd replace the top someday but everyone seems to love these branches so it has never been repaired. I bought 5 picks and then cannibalized (meaning I buy larger picks and then break them apart so I have more to use) two other picks I had in my stash to fill in the base of the branches. I added some green bulbs and love how it turned out. Last year I had hung bulbs all over the branches but I think I am liking this change.

The glitter bulbs look fantastic at night.

 We will return to the LR to see the rest of my son's Nutcracker collection. We are in desperate need of a bigger shelf I can see!

Wire three picks together again and add a ribbon and you have some quick and easy greenery for lamps. 

I do a little bit in the Kitchen but not too much because lets face it, it will just get covered in flour and sugar. Just a pick with some bulbs added on the doors.

To the powder room:
Not too much here but a quick way to highlight art or mirrors is to cut a few sprigs of faux greenery and wire together and yes, you guessed it. Add a little ribbon bow. When I wire the bow to the greenery, I leave long ends of wire that I let hang down behind the frame. This lets it "sit" on the frame without falling off.  

I know it is time to leave but I wanted to show you my sweet twig sleigh that I rescued from the trash man. I just added a berry garland I had laying around and this is where I now keep all of my beautiful Christmas cards

And I could not forget to show my Nativity.....

Where is the baby? Come back on Christmas morning. 
He quietly is born in a manger while the world sleeps....

Before you leave, did you notice this little stocking?

I love this tradition that we started with my kids when Jake was about 18months old.  
Jesus gets a stocking and each of us gives Him a gift each year. 
I have wanted to make Him a stocking that is more befitting a King but then remember that He choose to come to us in a lowly, simple state.  
So this stocking is fitting. 
We have drawn pictures, given stickers, made snowflakes and made some promises of things we want to work on to make our characters more Christ -like. 
I imagine He chuckles and probably gets a big kick out of what we think He might like. 

I am pretty sure He just wants our hearts. 

Always being renewed,

P.S> Happy Birthday, MOM!! I love you!

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  1. Your holiday decorations are beautiful! I love the candles inside the fireplace.

  2. It looks lovely. I am partial to the nutcrackers because my daughter collects them too. I wish I had thought of a stocking for Jesus when she was a child. That is such a wonderful way to focus on the reason we celebrate.

  3. Kim - how beautiful your home is!!! I got some great ideas! Thank you for posting!

  4. I think the only thing you should not change is your candle fireplace...and the rest will be change... :)

  5. What a nice home tour! I can relate with the getting into decorating ruts. I was tired of my ruts this year too, so I found ways to switch things up & use what I have on hand to create new ornaments & decorations.

    I also collect Nutcrackers, so I totally understand the needing a bigger shelf! I had to divide mine up this year because I didn't have enough room to put them all together. :)

    Thanks for inviting us into your home. Merry Christmas!

    ~Steph @ Silver Boxes

  6. Love the box w/ branches. So pretty.

    When hubby and I were first married, like many young marrieds we didn't have much. I made a lot of our ornaments, and we bought quite a few from dime stores (the forerunner of the dollar store). Like other couples, we started collecting special ornaments from Hallmark and Margaret Furlong. For several years we carefully unpacked, displayed, and repacked ornaments that had become like old friends. It was comfortable. It was who we were at the time.

    A few years in we decided to choose a theme. That year we decorated in red and white. We purchased a few new glass balls, and I decorated a few clear ones, as well as painting and glittering wooden snowflakes (an inexpensive craft store purchase), or pine cones gathered from around our property. Much of what we already owned fit right in.

    Since that time we've taken to choosing a different color scheme every year. Once in a while we go back to one that we've used before, but usually we add in some new inexpensive elements, mostly DIY. This year it's red, silver, and white, and minimal (less to pack away at seasons end as well).

    Some things always come out (the Willow Tree nativity), but the Hallmark and Margaret Furlong have been thinned considerably (headed for either eBay or the thrift store), and we've moved on. We've changed, our style has changed, and we're having fun decorating in different ways.

    Your house is lovely. Thanks for the tour. :-)

  7. I love what you did, and how you did it. Great job! I have just gotten started, and many of our blogger friends ( like you) have my creative juices going!

    JAN @ The Pink Geranium

  8. i understand
    because i was in a rut too
    before i pulled the Christmas decorations out

    your home looks lovely

    the vintage bits and pieces
    and that feathery garland

    thanks for sharing
    at Fridays Unfolded!


  9. It's beautiful! Thanks for the inspiring ideas :)

  10. luv the new decorations and the blog... I'm so doing this next year as I'm bored with the same ol decorations after 25 years (yawn). Will definitely be trying out a few of your clean, and simple ideas. My son collects nutcrackers too and luvd the grouping, and I've got a year to find the perfect spot.

    thanks and happy new year to u and yours.



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