Monday, December 17, 2012

Gracious Giving–Day ?: Spreading Christmas Cheer!

I hope you've been enjoying my Gracious Giving posts, though my grand goal of daily blogging has been met with some time challenges.  There was one year I covered all 31 days of December, but then I didn’t have so many places to make merry!  Thanks for tuning in whenever you can and I’ll post whenever I can!  After all, it’s the holiday season and even elves need a coffee break.  :)


(One of the “big guys” in the Horton home.  A gentle, jolly elf!)

In honor of Spreading Christmas Cheer, I’ll share some photos of what I’ve been creating over the past few weeks.  While these were completed under the umbrella of “business”, I do hope I brought some extra twinkle and merriment, wherever I landed!  I’ve sprinkled some helpful hints, throughout the post.  Be sure to look for them!


Not all of your Christmas decorations have to be traditional reds and greens.  We set this client’s table in coral tones in reference to the copper-finished dome above it.



Can I tell you how much I adore these faux bois salad plates?!!  Mixing the Vietri earthenware and the bling brings a much more interesting, layered effect.  Helpful Hint:  If you need to amp up a less formal set of dishes, it’s okay to use other pieces, such as the crystal studded charger.  The reason this works is that I placed another less formal design, such at the wood grained-pattern on top.  That finish was still mirrored so it works.


We tucked some seasonal greens, and a little bling, in these luscious roses.  My clients thought this was the prettiest table they had ever seen!  Because they are able to travel to some of the best resorts in the world, I was thrilled beyond – well – beyond! 

The roses also have a deep meaning to my clients.  Because it’s personal, I won’t share it but it takes the event beyond just flowers.  Design is an intimate process and it makes the client’s experience even better when we honor them in their homes.


One more peek for good measure.  The flower arrangements and the moss balls on the mercury glass stands were provided for us by August Lily Flowers, an amazing shop in our town of Monroe, NC!


In the exterior courtyard, lanterns are aglow, topped with fresh greens and are beribboned with red metallic bows.


My friend, Beth Swanson, who was on our design team, chuckled when I discussed the proper amount of “cone-age” needed to texturize the mantel displays.  We loved the mix of brown and green for the library, as it complements the walnut paneling.


What a view from one of the foyer windows!  Twinkle lights in the trees.


There was a new addition to the tree family.  Tucked in the corner of the wine-tasting room, it’s loaded with all things, wine!




A hint for your next tree:  To keep it from being too “glitzy”, be sure to add texture.  In this case, I added some contrasting greens, berries, and burlap to tone down the shine of the ornaments for this more rustic space.


Simple mixes can be amazing!  In the kitchen area of the wine room, strategically placed glass balls capture the low light.

Tighe Christmas Tree

What an honor to be asked back, each year!  It’s like a family reunion!


Now off to another home . . .  The mantel began with my client’s treasured collection of stockings.  Traditional and whimsical – all mixed together.  Faux greens were enhanced with real greens and sugar pine cones.  Berries provided red accents.  I feel as if I’m in a beautiful, English manor house when I see this fireplace!

From there, we went towards the dining room.  It was time to get ready for another party and set the table with care.  My client already had her plates, napkins, goblets, and such.  We just needed to pull it all together with the flowers.



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Rather than place a large piece in the middle, we used two arrangements, one at each end, while sprinkling colored votives in between.  Another tabletop hint:  Put your placesettings out, first, to anticipate the space you have left for adornments.  If we had ordered one, first, it may not have made it to the table at all!


(A couple of furry helpers keep things cheerful, too!  Maggie is always interested in what’s happening.  I think Emma pooped out on us!)


I heard the party was a big success.  Always music to my ears!


Across the hall in the living room, her majolica collection received a few sprays and some thistle.  This family corner cabinet had been in storage and we pulled it out for a place of honor in the home.  It’s one of my favorite pieces!

The next generation . . . It’s always a proud moment when a mom gets to see her daughter feather her own nest.  The client, above, had mentioned her own daughter might be interested in “tweaking” her townhome and boy did we stretch that phrase!  I shared a few pics in an earlier post.  We went back to get her home ready for a combo shower and holiday fete. 


Retro colors have been very au courant!


We mixed some “deer” ornaments, in silver tones, amongst the pottery.


Glass bottles, on the mantel, are merry and bright!


Bows and beads, beads and bows!


Baubles and bright, shiny beads!


Thank goodness I got a jumpstart on our tree, this year!  There could have been a bah-humbug or two, had I not.  You can see how well I kept up with this blog series!

Merry, Merry Christmas to you and your families.  May you be blessed with love, joy, health, and all of the things to keep your homes happy and warm.  Thank you for being with me, this year, and throughout so many.

(And if you want your house decorated for the holidays, I may need to start in July!)

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Sarah Devaney-O'Neil said...

Beautiful designs, Wanda!! I love, love, love those silver chargers and that slender wine-themed tree!!! I would definitely be merry in that space!! Happy holidays, Sarah

Wanda S. Horton - Interior Designer said...

I love that you stopped by, Sarah! Thanks so much and I hope you have a wonderful family time! XO! Wanda