Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Notes from a Cottage Industry Christmas House Tour

Well it is finally here. I sure can not wait to view all the clever ideas and homes.
A very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all that stop by.

For anyone unaware of the big event, please use this link to enjoy the entire tour.

Welcome to our home.

I decided to skip the traditional red and white. I love it, but decided I wanted to try something a little different. When we decided to change our Christmas tree, the old tree was re-purposed in many different spots.

First on the outside the window box cages each received a few branches and decorations.

I cut individual branches down to create a topiary with lights. The "bark" is cinnamon sticks hot glued to the dowel

center. It is standing in a large urn from TJ Maxx.

Next the top became a small Christmas tree for our music room for my Grandmother's antique ornaments. It is also on the light sconce. (Just be sure to keep anything on the chandeliers or sconces away from the lights)

Next time you see an old artificial tree at a garage sale or along the side of a road. Grab it and re-purpose it. It won't end up in a land fill and will give great decorating opportunities.

On to the rest of the house.

The family room and chandelier.

Each surface is layered with cedar branches. I wait to trim them each year at Christmas. We also grow Holly in the back yard so that at Christmas we have our own. It is wonderful to use the natural along with the artificial. We have one child that was allergic to some to the natural items. We use a combination to give a realistic look.

We also liked the old world look of fruit and peacock feathers.The fruit was on clearance several years ago after fall. The spatter gold gave it a wonderful Holiday feeling.

Since I could no longer use the real fruit that tended to promote mold, this was a great alternative.

Walnuts were sprayed gold and hot glued to skewers to be inserted into the decorations. The skewers can be cut off at any length using pruning sheers.

The oranges are artificial. I used a skewer to poke holes in a design pattern, then inserted real cloves. I miss the wonderful citrus and spicey smell the real ones give off, but since we are unable to use them, these work wonderfully.

I built this mirror using a TJ Maxx shelf turned upside down. Can you tell TJ Maxx is a favorite store.The fruit is also placed on skewers to use in the arrangements.

The last few items are for memories. The sled was my Grandmother's and the ice skates are my Father-in-Law's. Both have passed, but are continually remembered.

The snowballs are made with Styrofoam balls. Wrapped in batting. Spray glued and rolled in poly pellets(the stuffing for beanie babies). I then add a clear glitter. So all you see is the sparkle. The bucket is from the hardware store. Spray paint and then sand lightly. I needed it to look old to match the items I place with them.

The next is our angel. We moved 4 years ago. We designed and built this house. Our children grew up in a Victorian that we added a porch to. We had left over brackets we had ordered from Texas. The children missed the home for a while. This angel was made from the brackets and a table leg. We hang it up, but it was hard to get the picture so I placed it within reach for the photo.

Hope you enjoyed the tour. I can't wait to see all the ideas everyone has. I am off to get a cup of coffee in the kitchen and then settle down to view them all.

Until next time...


  1. What a wonderful home, I may have to borrow some of your ideas!
    Blessings and Merry christmas!
    Leigh Ann

  2. I reallly enjoyed the tour! You are sooo clever & I have gotten many ideas from you. Love that you re-purpose the tree & I gotta make some of those faux snowballs (how cute!). Happy Holidays!

  3. Your home is so beautiful! I love the snowballs!!!

  4. Beautiful. I wish my kitchen looked more like yours. :)

  5. What a lovely home you have. I really like the angel and the snowballs. Great use of colors too, I tend to be a non traditionalist when it comes to christmas colors too. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Debra,

    How beautiful. You've done an amazing job. I like the repurposing ideas you came up with. Gives me some ideas for decorating our home, although not this year... too much work (job)!


  7. Such clever repurposing of the artifical tree. I am going to remember that tip. Love the purple decorations. It's such fun to see something different.

    Merry Christmas!

  8. I love all the colour you've put into your beautiful home - and the way you've repurposed old artificial trees. Very creative!


  9. I love the uniqueness of your decorating and the different colors than the normal red/green. Lovely keepsakes of your grandmother and father-in-law makes things extra special!

    Merry Christmas!



  10. Phenomenal! Everything looks so beautiful Deb. I love the re-use of a much loved Christmas tree.You must have spent hours making everything. The bucket of snowballs is amazing! They look so authentic.

    I'm also impressed with the upside down mirror shelf. You have such a incredible eye for design and have such a beautiful home.

    Thank you for sharing it with us.

    Cheers...Ann :)

  11. Oh Debra, it's all so lovely! I love the traditional colours too but I think I'm ready for a change as well. You have some great ideas there. :o)

  12. You have a lot of neat decorating tips. I love T.J.Maxx too and Marshall's Home Goods even more. Thanks for the tour.

  13. Wow, I loved the tour. Beautiful things, but the way you put everything together is magical and I love the snowballs! Will have to try that...I have batting coming out my ears! You have done a great job, beautiful really of decorating for Christmas!

  14. I love your tree and the snowball idea is AWESOME! Thanks for sharing...

  15. What a beautiful decorated home! I love the color scheme! May have to try a different color next year. ;) Your snowballs look softer than mine and probably are too! Thank you for the tour and for stopping by.

  16. Hi Debra:
    You sure did an outstanding job when you designed your home. I really like the front door, it looks so nice and heavy. The decorations are beautiful, just like you would see in a decorating magazine.
    Merry Christmas

  17. Your home is so beautiful,how smart to reuse your tree. I put one out at the curb with "free" on it last year.

  18. Hi Debra

    It's Lisa from Quilting Friends. Your home looks just beautiful all decorated for Christmas. Hope you have a Wonderful Christmas and New Year.



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