Friday, December 17, 2010


Naturalist: One who studies nature, especially by observation

Melange: odds and ends; a motley assortment of things; a collection containing a variety of miscellaneous thingsNaturalist Melange, that is the closest description I could think of for my holiday decor this year. The phrase " a motley assortment of things" perfectly fits my Romantic Hillbilly Chic mix of rustic tattered natural elegance. I hope you enjoy the photo tour below, you can click on any photo to enlarge for detail viewing.
Being sick put a HUGE damper on my ability to get my holiday decorating done this year. I decided I had to pull together things that were already in the house and holiday them up a bit. The only things I removed from storage were the mantle garland, a mini nativity set, and two shoe box sized ornament containers...period. I did get a new tree, because as most of you know, a mouse ate mine, and five new taper candles. Kind of sparse beginnings for an eye candy kind of Christmas.Handy Hubby gave me a beautiful flea market table I had been admiring for an early Christmas present and I decided that would be the perfect place to showcase my Christmas display. I borrowed items from all over my house, especially the studio, even little pieces of art make an appearance.

I brought and old gate in from the garden, took the mirror off the wall near my closet, and potted the tree in an urn style planter then just went crazy layering all my favorite things. It is not at all what I expected but better than I dreamed. Hang on to your hats the photo tour is about to begin. NOTE: There are a lot of photos on this post, to load faster scroll down to
bottom of my blog page and turn off the media player. The shelves above the sofa just got a little bit of live greenery to make them festive... Oh, and if you see anything that looks like dust in the photos, its not, really, in my house that is called patina!

The side table got a quick treatment too. I removed the usual piece of art that hangs in the basket and replaced it with this fantastic angel collage by KC Wills...I have it on very good authority that there will be a little something under the tree for me from her too. No, I did not peek, exactly, but that is a story of another day.

In front of the sofa I have an antique chest topped off with a velvet runner. I keep this very simple and easily removable because when large crowds are here I roll it over the wall, top it with a cushion and add some pillows for overflow bench style seating. I place a stack of old books coupled with candles and a little Christmas star I made on one side. In the middle is a little iron holder that usually is in the studio holding tattered books that I collage with to serve as a Christmas card holder. An old birdcage rounds out the display with a touchable Nativity scene complete with cookie cutter star that the grands can enjoy. They LOVE playing with anything in this bird cage.In the hall I hung a hand carved angel that was gift from my husband many years ago. I topped the table with a stack of old books, layers of vintage linens and laces, a crazed platter, paper roses, buttons, a jar of string, all from my studio stash. I added in a broken iron clock and bell that the grands also love to play with to bring the dark tones of the iron down into the display. A little greenery and battery operated twinkling lights under the lace round out this tattered table top.Since I only have a sum total of three inches of mantle space to decorate, stuffing a bit garland in there is about as good as it gets. I kept it super simple this year, a few small pine-cones gathered from the woods with a mixture of vintage glass and handmade nature or romance inspired ornaments.I add a tiny twine tied sprig of greenery to this " table top" display and that was it. I have been looking for the right table so this picture frame plopped on a plant stand base is a stand in until I find what I want but it is kind of growing on me so we will see. Now, for the big finish, a Romantic Naturalist Melange Hillbilly Chic kind of Christmas decor! The " wreath" , an old oval frame embellished with my grandmothers jewelry, dried naturals from the woods, vintage lace, and flea market finds...The tree...The tree is potted in an urn style planter from the garden...A gathering from nature; twigs, dried leaves and grasses...
Hand made coffee filter and tulle garland and somewhere in there gold chain garland from the hardware store...Last years handmade ornaments...Tiny handwoven birds nest complete with little blue birds...Vintage amber bottle tied on with twine sport an emu feather and a sprig of old millinery flowers ...All topped off with a rusty tin bird, twigs, and emu feathers...
The whole crazy melange...All kinds of artful things from studio supplies,Old books to burlap,
To nature and flea market finds, all stuff I already had on hand...Christmas greens and handmade things...
Do you think Santa will take put me on the naughty list for robbing Rudolph of his antlers?And candle light round out the scene...Times run out...I love this upside down clock as a tongue in cheek touch!Can you tell I kind of miss having a booth and merchandising just a little? If I had one thing to do over, and I still might, I would have left the tree undecorated, just a green tree with white lights to tone down the over the top feel of it all.Now I need to wrap the presents to fill up that empty shelf underneath!

I said I was only decorating one room this year but it seems I broke that rule, the dining nook got a wee bit of a transform and I will share that with you next week. Don't forget that tomorrow is Rebecca's (A Re-Purposed Life) Birthday Blog Party is tomorrow! See details HERE. And if you missed it, you can sign up for my Warm Winter Wish Give Away HERE.

Today I am linking up with the following:

Debra of Common Ground for Vintage Inspiration FridayFeathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
And Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special
I hope you all have enjoyed my Romantic Naturalist Melange Hillbilly Chic kind of Christmas!

Have a very wonderful weekend!


Vee said...

Oh my word! I could spend hours just standing here twirling around in a circle with my mouth wide open and my eyes glazed over in delight. Miss Sandy, you've outdone yourself! Why bother with decorations when you can create all this enchantment... So many delightful ideas... I know that your family is going to love this.

saltbox treasures said...

WOW!!! You have a talent for pulling together vignettes! Everything is just so lovely and homey! Thanks for sharing. Love your blog. Glad you're feeling better. Merry Christmas!
~ Julie

Robin said...

It all looks gorgeous Sandy! Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


Sandy said...

I just don't know where to begin... I love your style of decorating..all the sweet vignettes you've filter garland...swoon! Lace, twigs, clocks, jewels, birds...can I say more? Yep, I sure could, cuz I get all that you do. But, I'll stop here!!
Thanks so much for sharing, I will now go back and "study".
You are one talented Sandy!

Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday and fantastic New year!
Thanks for visiting me too!
xoso SANDY

sonya said...

Oh Sandy,
You don't need Christmas decorations at all!:) You could even leave all this out all year around! It's just beautiful. You can come decorate my house too!
KC's collage is beautiful too. Aren't you excited about your gift from her? I would be! Of course, your collages are just as outstanding as hers.
Thank you for sharing your decorated home with us and I'm sure your family will enjoy it immensely.
Blessings to you,

Custom Comforts said...

What a beautiful post full of such pretty things. I have been sick too, which does make it hard to keep up with the decorating, but your home looks so very lovely and charming despite your illness. What a peaceful blog you have ~ it must be the peace of Christ I feel while visiting here.

Jane said...

I love your Romantic Naturalist Melange Hillbilly Chic style!! Great name too!
Gorgeous vignettes all through your house.
Thanks for the tour!

Linda said...

Beautiful holiday decor, Sandy! I love all the natural elements you've used...Romantic Naturalist fits it perfectly!

Bohemian said...

I'm LOVING your Romantic Hillbilly Natural Chic Melange style of decorating! You have created a Magical space for the Holidays, thanks so much for sharing!

Christmas Blessings... Dawn... The Bohemian

Lululiz said...

Stunning!! It really is gobsmackingly gorgeous, and I could oooh and aaaah over all the incredible details all day long.

Linens Lace and Lattes said...

WOW!!!!!!!! I am gulping down my coffee and heading out of my office to go decorate. You are truly amazing! I Love your style and stare into your photo's to take everything in...WOW is all I can say!

Jodie (everything vintage) said...

Miss Sandy!

If the cops show up at your door to arrest you (sick or not), it's my fault. I called them and told them that you STOLE my breath away with this gorgeous decor of yours!!!!! And...they DID have an APB out on you for Rudolph's antlers so you ARE going to be in t-r-o-u-b-l-e!!!!!

Can I switch homes with you? least stay there through Christmas while you are in jail???Please????? ;)

It's simply beautiful Sandy. I appreciate each little detail. I'm just speechless...(well, not really! haha)

I haven't been to visit lately and my heart just sank (in joy) to my toes when I saw your photo in your header!!! That's the collage you made and I won it! It's so special to me!!! I feel even more proud (if that were ever possible) knowing that it's your blog banner!!!! :))))

I hope you have the most wonderful of holidays, have fun with the little ones and then relax in your beautiful studio with Frankindoll...she's waiting for you to join her ;)

Did I tell you how much I enjoyed my visit with you today? If not...I really did Miss Sandy.

Thank you for making the start of my day totally MAGICAL :)

Denise said...

Sandy, I think everything looks GORGEOUS! You are so creative. If this was just the things around the house, I can't even imagine what your usual Christmas decor looks like. You have give me some great inspiration.

Bonita said...

So this is not completely going all out with the decorations???? Sandy, you have such a gift! Remind me again why you don't have a booth. Someone needs to hire you to work for a decorating magazine for sure!

Susan said...

Hello Miss Sandy,
I just love all your "Naturalist Melange Hillbilly Chic". Such eye candy photos! You do have quite a knack for display, and great idea to use items already found on hand or in nature.
Merry Christmas!
- Susan

LiLi M. said...

Hello Sandy!
It is good that I can type this text, as I'm speechless! Where to start? What to point out, as it all is simply gorgeous and beautiful and so you. I love it all!

As these are busy days I already want to wish you and your family a very warm and happy Christmas! Enjoy yourselves! Thanks for your lovely Christmas wishes!

Courtney ~ French Country Cottage said...

Goodness.. I just adore your decorations- they are absolutely beautiful! Everything is so serene and sweet- I love that garland on your tree- how creative and it looks amazing- Thanks so much for sharing at Feathered Nest Friday - Merry Christmas!

CoopDeVilla said...

I want to say that you have captured the Christmas spirit that I have been trying myself to create. I am in AHHHHH! I am also a new follower. I could go on and on about all of the lovliness that I saw and how long it took me to get through each and every photo, but I will say that I absolutely love-love the coffee filter and tule garland. Thank you for such wonderful inspiration.

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