And the fete continues. . .
Simply writing the introductions to this week's magnificently creative holiday decorating posts, by some of the most talented interior decorators I have ever met, has been an absolute joy. Their generosity in sharing their ideas is a precious cadeau for all of us.
Not only do they glorify the season in exquisite, personal detail -- as seen here by Patricia Tapp the author of, in my opinion, one of the best blogs out there, Little Augury, but also they pause in their rituals to give thought to the essence of the celebration.
You will see what I mean below, as Patricia shows and tells how she approaches her Christmas decorating in gentle spirit and grand style.
In her own words. . .
One of the most difficult tasks is to find myself looking over a sea of Christmas decorations and ornaments collected by my mother, grandmothers, and myself, and thinking, "It's time to choose a few things, a special few."
How does one do it, when everything seems so special? It is impossible. But this year is the year I did it. A small Victorian table tree -- that as of this post remains undecorated -- perhaps I will warm up to the idea of it.
When Tish asked me to share some of my decorating ideas with you, I agreed, thinking I would learn something myself. The lesson: Christmas is a beloved tradition going back generations and though it will not be the grand affair it has been in the past, it is lovingly celebrated. And, this year it will be celebrated in detail.
An ikat bow awaits its wreath.
An alabaster footed compote holds antique ornaments and a small Jansen console displays mercury glass cups with more antique ornaments and an old tree topper.
What happens when you have a dozen boxes of tree ornaments and a small tree? You
select some of your favorites -- those for me are the oldest. Find any sort of container for a single special one, or a nest full.
A clove wreath and topiary dressed in olive taffeta and velvet in the center hall with Saint Nick, painted by my mother, standing by.
The library is dressed in natural wreaths and an abundance of green taffeta.
And finally, one of my favorite traditions is bringing out the creche. This year I have chosen an old Italian one, a bit worse for wear, and I supposed that is one reason I love it so. I have several others and they have all been used at times and then alternated from year to year.
This year I've placed the creche on the table in the library. I made it very personal with small trinkets or remembrances that have meaning to me. Some of these include: several old miniature books; my grandfather's spectacles; my grandmother's photograph; a tiny china doll; a few turtles I've collected; a paper mache octagonal box; bits of amethyst and some ivory.
These are my gifts, along with those of the traveling Kings in the story. If you have small children, I think this is a very special way to have them begin to understand the story of the Nativity and of giving something of themselves.
It does seem tradition matters most. I do hope some of you will try these simple ideas and make them your own.