Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the official 2014 Gathered Home Christmas home tour! I hope you are ready for photos galore because I got a little snap-happy… I took several hundred photos and edited 65 of them for this post – now I’m doing my best to get that number down to something a little more manageable. I’m just so excited that a) Christmas is coming and b) my house is READY for the holidays two weeks before Christmas!
One of my favorite things about Christmas is getting out the boxes of decorations and unpacking all my favorite things. I’m not particularly sentimental or nostalgic in general, but for me Christmas isn’t Christmas without my favorite ornaments, decorations and traditions!
Like decking the halls while wearing the knit Santa hat I’ve worn for every holiday decorating session since I was little, or making Abby take a Christmas selfie in it! (Last year’s photo, but such a good one.)
The downstairs in our house is one big open circle, so I decorated the two rooms that are “finished” – the living room and the dining room. The kitchen is in the middle between the two, but I haven’t added any festive touches to its wallpaper-free-but-not-yet-painted glory. And we do not have outdoor Christmas lights or porch decorations. I just want to manage your expectations – no blow up snow globes in our yard.
But overall the place is feeling very jolly…
Especially if you sip on one of these while you take the tour!
This is what you see to your right when you walk through the front door.
I’ve had these little paper lantern string lights (from Target) for years and I decided to pull them out for Christmas this year because I loved the colors with my homemade pom pom garland and yellow lamps!
And to the left of the door…
Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree…
I love my white ultra-fake and somewhat sparkly tree! Especially with the new gray wall color this year! I decided to stick with simple and colorful glass balls this year – I’ve stockpiled them from thrift stores over the past few years and I just love the candy colors. And those agate sconces still strongly remind me of lollipops.
When I made the malachite curtains from a sheet set, I had a leftover fitted sheet – as you can see, I’ve put it to good use as a tree skirt.
It wouldn’t be Christmas without the fox brothers’ cheery winter wear. You can turn anything into a Christmas decoration with some felt, pom poms, and a jingle bell.
Add in a cheery caroling mouse companion and you are good to go!
The last living room detail…
Rudolph the red-nosed tree topper!
I made Rudolph out of felt a few years ago and sewed a little jingle bell collar around his neck. Well, our cat Tina (celebrating her first Christmas with us this year) has several beloved toys made out of felt that jingle, so naturally when I unpacked Rudolph she was thrilled that I had brought out a new special toy just for her! Each morning I would come downstairs and play what I like to call the “Where’s Rudolph” game because she would drag him off and hide him and I would spend ten minutes trying to find him again and rescue him from her loving chewing.
So I brilliantly decided to stick him up on top of the tree and out of harms way.
It wasn’t until I was triumphantly telling my mom the story of the disappearing reindeer and my solution that it struck me that Tina might just take this as a new and challenging twist on “Where’s Rudolph”…
But so far so good. She’s sticking to batting the ornaments around on the lower branches for now.
Shall we head to the dining room?
Sigh. If ever a room were made for Christmas, it’s this one! Evergreen walls, jewel tones, a fireplace and mantle. It’s my own little winter wonderland.
Of course I pulled out the homemade Merry Christmas banner.
And hung glass icicles from the chandelier. Because what else are chandeliers good for if you can’t bedeck them with icicles at Christmas time?
Antique books: collected over the years growing up, many of them gifts. Everything else: thrifted.
Those little Dutch houses are actually souvenir liquor bottles – my family has a set just like these and I always loved them growing up. I was thrilled to find an almost-identical set at the thrift store for a few dollars. On separate occasions I found the tree and a skier, who, while completely out of scale, just belongs with the whole vignette.
You’ll notice that I kept the books on the mantle from my Thanksgiving table setting and just worked in a few more green-hued volumes.
And I put up a second Christmas tree! This little pencil tree was a $50 Home Depot purchase last year but I actually didn’t end up using it – I tried to return it, but I was the idiot trying to return a Christmas tree after Christmas. Even though it was unused and within the 90-day return window, it’s impossible not to look a just little crazy while doing that. So I have two white Christmas trees now and I’m loving it!
This tree got the more non-candy-colored ornaments; the rustier reds, blushes, creams and golds that made up my Christmas tree last year. And while I keep the main tree in the living room empty beneath the branches because it’s one of the cats’ favorite places to nap, this little tree was just asking for some obligatory faux-presents.
I kept the table simple and ready for holiday entertaining with my #thriftscorethursday reindeer and sleigh and another older thrift score – a beautifully beaded shawl that reminds me of a sparkling blanket of snow.
And the marbled paper credenza got Christmas-fied as well!
My thrifted acorn cake stand holds a candle tree forest and a bottlebrush reindeer who’s just so excited about Christmas he constantly sheds glitter.
Another thrift score (wow – are you sensing a pattern around here?!), the glass drink dispensers, are currently holding red glass bead garlands to represent the festive punches we intend to fill them with at our upcoming Christmas party.
The table will be laden with Christmas crack and various other holiday treats and we’ll probably fire up the old Yule log on Netflix again (our actual fireplace is currently non-functional)… I’m looking forward to welcoming our friends into our slowly-but-surely “getting there” home and I’m so glad YOU stopped by today!
(P.S. I love this shot… Christmas card perfect, right?)