The final stop on our virtual holiday tour takes us to the Christmas living room for 2020. This room seems to decorate itself. When joe requested that at least one room in our home have carpet I knew the living room needed plaid. The set up of our house is very seasonal. In the winters we spend a lot of time in this room. The fireplace is in here as well as the TV. When it gets dark at 5pm we are not out working in the garden, we’re making a big dinner and then watching The Crown. The tree provides the perfect evening and early morning glow in the far corner of the room. There is nothing better than waking up before everyone on Sunday morning and reading about gardening while drinking my coffee in silence by the tree. Whenever we take our tree down after the season it feels like there is a huge empty space in the room.
This year Otto was old enough to walk out into the field and pick the tree out. It took us well over an hour but he found this one that has..some interesting branches. Our neighbors, Peterson Riverview Nursery grows incredibly gorgeous trees. Otto however, had heart and compassion for the stragglers LOL. I typically add tinsels and garlands but this year decided to just keep it simple with ornaments and lights. Otto every day asks about the star for the top of the tree and every day I tell him the tree is too tall to fit the star. Next year we will nail it. (I said that the previous 3 years).
Decorating for 2020 was a weird combination of force, obligation and want. I wanted to decorate more but I just didn’t have the energy. It was however relaxing to just get out a box of decor at a time and place it around the house rather than doing it all in one day. I felt like I could relax and be a little more creative that way. I moved my collections around the house away from their typical resting spots and I really liked the outcome.
I loaded the tree with over 100 shiny brites this year and so far have only had a couple of tragedies. Otto is extremely gentle with them and for the most part leaves them alone on the tree. He broke a couple early on and now sees how fragile they are. He was so much fun to decorate with this year. He really got into it and loves to rearrange my Santas and bottle brush trees (thank goodness they’re pretty durable).
The gifts are for the most part wrapped and ready to go with wrapping paper I bought from home goods. Side note: Glitter wrapping paper is the worst. What was I thinking. Not only does it leave glitter everywhere the tape doesn’t stick to it. Craft: fail.
I do love the mix of plaids and sparkle though. There is nothing like packages tied up with lush ribbon that add the finishing touches to your tree.
This spring we were given Joe’s Grandma’s piano. I hope in the next couple of years Otto will want to take lessons. He loves to play and actually is quite good with it. He makes up songs and notes instead of pounding away on it. I layered some string lights and fresh garland over the top with my collection of modern bottle brush trees from Rebel and The Found Cottage.
The chicken prints are from a late 1800’s hatchery catalog I found at a flea market. I didn’t feel too bad about taking the book apart because sadly there were drawings over some of the pages. I framed the good ones with simple brass frames and made a mini gallery wall over the piano. I love the way it glows with the lights.
My favorite thing I decorated this year was my living room mantle. I bought a large piece of garland from the Holland Farmers Market. It was full but as my bouquet from Stems Market started to fade I stuck the dried dead flowers into my garland. It was so different from the traditional garland I typically do but I really loved the way it turned out. I didn’t know celosia could dry so well *the purple and pink flowers some call cockscomb
I am going to try and dry some again next year from my garden. The mantle feels very victorian to me which is a style I said would never do but am now really in to. The mirrors and painting were flea market finds. The painting is signed by an artist out of Chicago. I got it for a steal (under $100) because it has a small repaired hole in the canvas. I was drawn to this painting because I loved her red hair and the bows on her dress.
The stockings are made from vintage grain sacks by my friend Sue from Fabric Scout Studio. She also made the 4 h pillows that are on my couch. Last year here I did the bottle brush trees but I really love the dried florals contrasting with the plaid stockings.
Next year I am going to maybe add some pampas grass and really build it up and make it cascade more down the sides. Hopefully by then we’ll be having packed holiday parties again!
trip down memory lane ( how far this room, and my photography skills haha have come)