Tag Archives: holiday

Three Unexpected Ways to Make the Bubbly Last Well Past Your New Year’s Eve Party

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Whether you’re celebrating New Year’s Eve at a bustling party or are planning a more cozy gathering closer to home, chances are you’re likely including a bottle of champagne in your festivities. We were curious if there were any innovative ways to re-use the cork once it was popped off the bottle of bubbly. Here are a few of our favorite ideas to upcycle that most humble element of the New Year’s Eve party. While these three projects are available for sale, you could easily DIY your own cork project, too.

 

This Succulent Magnet Planter plant contains a Crassula argentea compacta, or Mini Jade, paired with Crassula lycopodiode. It only requires a light misting of water about once a week for care. Fasten it to your fridge or any other magnetic surface that will receive a bit a sunshine.

 

This Champagne Cork Wreath from Gary Coon provides a festive alternative to an evergreen wreath. Gary told us that each wreath takes about 400 bottles of wine or champagne corks to create. While the wreaths on his Pinterest account are already sold, you can also order custom wreaths from him.

 

If you’re more interested in fashion than decor, we’ve found a very fun way to take your love of the bubbly to the next level. This party-wear-worthy bauble would fit right in at a New Year’s Eve bash. Can you think of a better conversation starter? The Champagne Cork Ring is created from immersing a slice of the cork in resin. It comes with an adjustable band and is available in a number of different champagnes.

 

Have you seen any innovative ways to decorate with champagne corks? We’d love to hear about them!

7 Holiday Instagram Snaps That Are Inspiring Us Right Now

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Whenever we need an instant source of decorating inspiration, we take a few minutes to browse Instagram. These holiday photos in particular caught our attention. Take a peek at the lovely decor and holiday decorating ideas we found that all incorporate Pottery Barn pieces.

 

“Our Christmas table, Pottery Barn martini glasses and all,” writes Instagram user faithallure.

 

We love how Instagram user jacqpeterson used some of our Florentine Angel Bath Towels to outfit her bathroom sink. The mini poinsettia is a great botanical touch as well.

 

Instagram user Nolan I. Miranda notes, “My room is ready for colder nights.” (Love the pillow on the left? You can find it here.)

 

Instagram user megpieinthesky used mercury glass decorations and glitter letters to decorate her tree this year.

 

“My in-laws gave me this Partridge in a Pear Tree Salt and Pepper Shaker from Pottery Barn. I just love it. So adorable!” writes Instagram user kelly_irons.

 

“Family Christmas tree!” explains Instagram user natcoronado.

 

 

Instagram user rhsmith419 decorated with these lovely Pottery Barn mercury candles. They create a lovely festive glow!

 

Do you have some beautiful decorating moments you want to share with us? Tag your Instagram photos with #potterybarn to help us find your snaps!

 

An Elegant Winter Tablescape Perfect For the Holidays and Beyond

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Today we’re featuring a lovely holiday tablescape from Dawn at Inspired Living. We think this tablescape would also look gorgeous for any elegant winter dinner party.

What’s your decorating philosophy for holiday dinners and dinner parties?

“I don’t believe you have to go overboard decorating every last space to have a dramatic and eye catching home for the holidays.   A few simple, well thought out choices will go a long way to create a festive environment and to make your guests feel welcome and warm.  For example, the hurricanes and Pottery Barn candlesticks I used on our table were all of different heights and sizes, which keeps the display visually interesting.  All of the items were made from the same material, which unites the display.

Also, you can never go wrong with candlelight and greenery to add a little holiday warmth to the home. From there, you can layer in an additional element or two to add interest; on my tablescape, I stuck with mercury glass and silver. After all, keeping your decor simple will allow more time to focus on preparing for your guests and welcoming them to your home.”

 We know that you love to mix in vintage pieces — what’s your advice for making these pieces look beautiful and part of an overall decorating scheme?

“I like mixing new and old.  For this tablescape, I paired thrifted vintage low ball glasses with china we received as a wedding gift to create an elegant place setting.  For serving dishes, I might use my Pottery Barn Claro Cake Stand along with my grandmothers silver platter — another wedding gift — both of which spend most days displayed in our china cabinet.”

What’s your favorite aspect of decorating for the holidays?

“I love creating a warm and festive atmosphere that encourages our family and friends to gather around the fireplace to relax and enjoy company. I want people to come into my home and feel like they want to linger for awhile and stay.”

What do you appreciate about Pottery Barn’s pieces (like the Clarissa chandelier in your dining room)?

“Pottery Barn’s merchandise is eyecatching and beautiful; I’ve used my Pottery Barn purchases over and over again for years now. Furthermore, I feel that many of the items have a timeless quality. If you don’t have time to search out that perfect vintage find, chances are Pottery Barn will have something at the ready.  Numerous guests have asked me if my Pottery Barn Clarissa chandelier is an antique!”

 

Check out Dawn’s tips for creating a beautiful tablescape similar to hers!

  • Layer your linens. “For this tablescape, I used two tablecloths to create yet another layer of interest. One served as a traditional tablecloth while the other was folded to be used as a runner.”
  • Group like objects for an impactful display.  “In addition to the glass hurricane and candlestick display, I grouped several milk glass serving dishes and pedestals to create an interesting display to plan Paperwhite bulbs this year.”
  • Think outside of the box for the items you already have in your home.  “Next year, I might serve you a salad out of the very same milk glass dishes being used as planters this year.  Hope you don’t mind! Additionally, I plan to use the low ball glasses to serve a small appetizer on Christmas Eve. These same glasses currently serve as votives in other areas of our home while on other occasions they are used to serve a festive beverage.”
  • Go outside for more inspiration.  “My son loves bringing home acorns and pinecones.  I’ve used these to fill hurricanes and bowls around the house in the past.  This year we brought branches and greenery inside from around our yard.”

Source: Photos courtesy <Inspired Living

An Absolutely Unexpected Christmas Tree Alternative

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An absolutely unusual and gorgeous Christmas “tree.” — Folk Magazine

This dog-friendly home has character to spare. — Apartment Therapy

A look back at home resolutions for 2012. — Centsational Girl

What’s for dinner? Chicken, squash and shiitakes. — The Blender

Discover an artist who’s rethinking toile. — Sweet Paul

Clever design ideas to steal from a mansion-turned-hotel. — CasaSugar

Discover the top pins of 2012. — Country Living

Follow These Tips to Gift Wrap Like a Pro

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Want to make your gifts look gorgeous this year? We caught up with Pottery Barn’s resident gift wrapping expert, Sean, to get his tips and tricks for creating your best-looking holiday gifts ever.

Sean’s Top Tips 

• “Don’t use a gift bag! Even a simple gift looks better wrapped in paper and tied with ribbon or twine.”

• “Using the right materials makes giftwrapping easy. A metal ruler for measuring and cutting paper; a rotary cutter for clean, easy cuts with a straight edge and double-stick tape to ensure everything stays in it’s place and out of sight.”

• “Measuring the paper to fit the box ensures all folds stay crisp and neat. ”

 

• “Once the box is wrapped use your thumb and index finger to crease all edges for a crisp, clean look.

• “Ensure that the two triangular flaps on each side of the box meet in the middle and face in the same direction.”

• “When tying a four-way bow, ensure the ribbon on the bottom lays flat and isn’t twisted.” (Find a tutorial for tying a bow here.)

• “Don’t forget to embellish your gift! A simple topper like an evergreen branch or holiday ornament is an easy and festive way to finish off the perfect gift wrap.”

Ready to wrap? You can also check out the slideshow below to discover a unique way to wrap pesky round presents like candles. You can also download a variety of PDF tags similar to the one Sean used below.

[portfolio_slideshow size=large exclude="1014,1071,1072,1073,1074, 1075, 1086"]

A Holiday House Tour With Our Big House on the Prairie

Decorating, Inspiration and tagged , , | | | 3 Replies

Karen, who blogs at Our Big House on the Prairie, has a gift for creating a festive, cozy, holiday-decorated home. We’re so happy to share some photos from her lovely abode — you’re in for an absolutely festive tour. We also spoke with Karen about her decorating style and holiday traditions.

Can you give us a brief history of your home?

“Our home was built in 1907-08. We purchased the house in foreclosure in July 2010 and embarked on a two and a half year renovation. Every inch of the house was in need of tender loving care . . . and some parts needed a complete overhaul. We are thankful we survived the process.”

How do you use your office during the year? Does its use change at all over the holidays?

“I own a business where I help people care for their photos by getting them off their hard drives and into their lives. My office is where I preserve my own family’s memories and stories — and in the process help others do the same. I coach a team around the country, and all of that happens around my computer. It’s so important — both mentally and emotionally — to have a beautiful place to work. I use my Pottery Barn shelves to surround myself with my favorite things . . . photo albums, favorite needlework, a picture of my daddy, gifts from my children and my cherished collection of 17 Susan Branch journals. (For 17 years I have celebrated each day with written comments at bedtime in a journal.) This year I added my Top 40 movies to my shelves! My work is steady throughout the year, but my Pottery Barn project table probably sees a little more action around Christmas. My wish for the world: That every woman gets a Bradford Project Table.”

Can you tell us about all of the stockings and mittens you have hanging? There are a lot!

“We are a blended family of ten kids — and now six grandchildren! With spouses, our stocking count is up to sixteen! With every wedding I get to pick a new stocking. Our stockings are handknit in Bosnia by underprivileged women. Since we are adding grandchildren at an alarming (and wonderful!) rate -— 5 in this past year. I made an executive decision that the grandchildren would have mittens instead.”

Do you have a favorite room in your home?

“My favorite room would be the kitchen . . . and our bedroom . . . and the master bathroom . . . and my office. Ha.”

Are there any Pottery Barn products you used to decorate with this year that you particularly love?

“I loved bringing wrapped Christmas gifts home from Pottery Barn and incorporating them right into my decorating! Isn’t that why we love Pottery Barn, because everything coordinates? Right down to their wrapping paper, ribbon and tags! My friends are not going to get their gifts until the last minute. I loved seeing the way Pottery Barn filled glass decanters with ornaments in the store. I went home and did the same. My favorite new thing is the real wax flameless candles that you set on a timer with the touch of a button. Every night at 5:30 pm my candles all come on like magic and flicker for 5 hours. It has added a real magical feel to the house this holiday. And I know it is time to go to bed when all my candles are out — ha.”

“I also loved putting the Pottery Barn Kids chair Santa hats – on my PB kitchen stools, and I love the Pottery Barn mercury glass collection because I think it reflects the beauty of our leaded windows — no pun intended. This holiday I wrapped it in white toile netting and added vintage snow.”

Your tree is lovely! What kind is it? Is this how you usually decorate it every year?

“Our tree this year is a Douglas Fir. I like Frasier Firs, too. The important thing for me is fresh. “Life is too short for plastic greenery” is what I like to say. This year I did everything fresh, even the evergreen boughs on the mantels and at the front door . . . it made me happier. The tree is decorated with ornaments that have been lovingly collected over the years. If we tried, we could probably tell our family history with that Christmas tree.”

How are you celebrating the holidays this year? Are you hosting family?

“This year I am celebrating by creating a family recipe book with photos and family stories. It is actually Volume 2 of Mother Rabbit Cooks. Our family will gather to celebrate after the holidays because we alternate with the ‘outlaws’ and this isn’t our year.”

What advice do you have for others who want to enjoy their holiday decorating more?

“Force yourself to get it done early by being on a Christmas Home Tour or scheduling a big holiday Party. And make a great playlist of classic Christmas music.”

Why do you shop at Pottery Barn?

“I like one-stop shopping. I am not a mall shopper. I like having everything I love all in one place. I love beautiful, classic design. I love how everything in the store fits together and works together because I like my whole house to feel coordinated. I also like the way that my vintage Pottery Barn pieces work with the new stuff — and last year’s pillows mix and match with this season. I love the prints that make me want to stand and stare at them. I love the color palettes. I love getting my PB catalogs and being inspired . . . Not only are they a decorating guide, but they transport you to places that you can dream about creating for your own home. Somehow we learn about warmth and creating intimate spaces, color and good design just by flipping through the pages. They ‘teach us’ with pictures. I love feeling inspired by walking into the Pottery Barn store — and I love the kind people who work there. I loved renovating a home knowing that Pottery Barn had everything I needed — and wanted! From the light fixtures to the mirrors and house numbers.”

Take the full tour of Karen’s beautiful home!

 [portfolio_slideshow size=large click=openurl]

Source: Photos courtesy Our Big House on the Prairie/a>

Laura’s Inspired Advent Calendar and Mantel

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If you’re looking for creative advent calendar decorating ideas — or simply gorgeous holiday decorating ideas in general — you’ll be pleased to read this interview with Laura, who’s the creative forced behind the blog Finding Home.

What was your original inspiration for the look of your holiday mantel?

“The original inspiration for my mantel was my desire to create an advent calendar this year.  I had been trying to figure one out that was my style for some time and finally settled on the idea of a window.  Once I decided on that, I felt it would be perfect center point for my mantel.  I knew I wanted to keep the color scheme simple this year, greens, creams and whites and natural elements.”

Can you tell us more about your advent calendar? 

“Once I had decided on the window idea, the task was to find a window with 24 panes.  It took quite a few months of looking through my regular vintage haunts, and finally found one in August.  It waited patiently for me in my garage until I was ready to start pulling it together.  I simply glued vintage sheet music with cut out numbers (I used an electronic cutter for the numbers) to each of the panes.  There is a felt snowflake taped to the window that we move to each number to count down the days.  I also put a small basket hanging on the side of the mantel with corresponding numbered envelopes.  Each one contains an idea for us to do together as a family each day.”

The cut glass doorknobs in the pack basket are such a brilliant addition! How did you happen upon this idea?

“On the left side of the mantel I placed a vintage scout basket filled with greenery. It is one of my favorite things because of the signature and name on it.  One of the main reasons I love to use vintage items in my home is when there is a story behind them — and this basket is a perfect execution of that.  Inside the basket are two small evergreen plants mixed with fake evergreens.   It was a little flat and I wanted to dress it up a bit.  I have always loved using vintage door knobs in my décor, so I decided to place them in.  They were too heavy for them really to be placed right, so I decided to place them on a wooden skewer and place them in the dirt of the plant as my own version of a ‘floral pick.’”

(A close look at the name and signature on the back of the pack basket.)

What greenery did you use for this look?

“The greenery I used was a mixture of real and fake.  I was careful in selecting my fake greenery in that it was realistic but not overly expensive.  On the stool in front, I used a small lemon cypress plant.”

We also love the Epsom salt in the mason jars, which you use to hold up the candles. How did you decide to try this? Any advice for re-creating it?

“I was inspired by some projects I had seen on Pinterest to use the Epsom salts.  I often use mason jars with candles in them in my décor, but I felt for this mantel it needed a little something more — and the ‘snow look’ was just what it needed.  This project couldn’t be simpler and is very inexpensive as well.  I used a mixture of tea lights, tapers and small votives in the the different jars.”

 

What are your favorite elements of your mantel?

“My favorite element of this mantel is how all of the elements pull together, it is in the Christmas spirit, without being overdone.  The colors are comfortable, but bring an element of elegance.  I do however absolutely love the drawing on the right side.  It is actually a vintage sap bucket lid, from back in the days when they were wood.  When I found it at a yard sale in Vermont there was  a very light sketch of the Victoria-dressed man and woman skating.  I used a chalk pen to go over the lines that were there so the drawing would be more visible.  This is especially meaningful for me because my husband grew up on a farm that made maple syrup and we now make our own in our neighborhood here in New York.  It is one of favorite times of year, after Christmas of course.”

Why do you shop at Pottery Barn? 

“My style is based in traditional but always mixed with vintage elements and a little modern edge thrown in. Pottery Barn’s products provide me just that element — and the unique vintage pieces that are offered from time to time are amazing.  Almost anything I can find at Pottery Barn fits within my style and allows me to still be unique and not too ‘cookie cutter.’ And all of the holiday products are always so inspiring. ”

 

All photos courtesy Erin Witkowski