Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas Simplified: The Dining Room

 I really intended for my simplified Christmas to be simpler than this. I got a little carried away as you can see. Instead of a fancy tablecloth I draped the table with a simple painter's drop cloth. The narcissus and amaryllis were lovely but I wanted candles. Then I thought how pretty those dried hydrangea blossoms from fall would be. Of course I had to add some fir branches. Luckily some people up the street had piles of trimmed branches from their trees out for the trash.  How about some silver pieces to reflect light? 

This is the third go-round for the hydrangea blossoms. First as summer splendor in the yard, then in a pitcher for fall, and now adding that amazingly restrained antique white to this Christmas table. So lovely in candlelight.

I nestled unused pieces of silver amid the flowers and greenery. Here you see the top to a butter dish. Things don't have to make sense, they just have to work visually. Save your cash and use your imagination instead. The only money I spent was on the bulbs and half of those got planted in the garden for spring.

This is some straight-up-use-what-you-have-decorating. For the picture ledge I just gathered some things from around the house that had red and green elements. A friend had given me some fabric she was discarding so I wrapped the toile around a leftover piece of foam core board and tied a bouquet of greenery with twine to hang on top. As you can see, when I'm decorating I'm just doing what looks right to me and makes me happy. On this picture ledge that includes a vintage book about bees and bee plate from Anthropology for pops of green. I used a matte and another piece of scrap in red to complete the Christmas effect.

I love the twine here instead of a fancy glittery ribbon. 

The house looks very festive even without the giant tree. There did turn out to be a lot more involved than I meant for there to be but, it just kind of evolved once I got started. I like that things were either gathered or grown. There won't be any waste afterwards and nothing will need to be stored. The storage problem is kind of how all this got started after all. It just no longer makes sense to me to store boxes and boxes of decorations for 11 months out of the year. 

holiday dining room

I feel like, for the first time ever, I actually made progress in my spiritual life instead of just getting swept up in the holiday tide while lamenting the over commercialization of the season. I was quiet more. I slowed down. I spent less. My spending was small and very deliberate. For the first time in many years I wasn't exhausted and resentful. I was thankful and thoughtful. More about that part of my Christmas coming up soon. Until then, may you and yours have a beautiful Christmas no matter how you choose to celebrate it.

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