2012 Christmas Holiday Home Tour Video

Our 2012 Holiday Home Musical Video is ready to provide you with some inspirational holiday spirit! 

Click below, to view:

If you’d like to watch it in HIGH DEFINITION QUALITY, click on the “GEAR” icon (this will appear in the black bar once you hit the PLAY button) and then, click on 720p.

Don’t forget to turn up your speakers, fix a cup of cocoa, put your feet up to…

Enjoy the Creativity!

MERRY CHRISTMAS

Eileen

My sincerest thanks to the talented Production Staff at THEM FEELINGS MULTIMEDIA for creating our video each & every year, simply to support a small business!

CHRISTMAS 2012 – the year of the New Puppy!

[As always, click on any photo to enjoy a larger view]

Christmas decorating at The Seasonal Home had to go in a slightly different direction for 2012, thanks to the addition of a new family member.  Meet Miss Lilly Grace, who sometimes looks more like a Teddy Bear…

    

She’s a very sweet girl who didn’t mind posing for her holiday photo…

And just this week, those cute little puppy ears turned upward (to help her listen for Santa!) and I think she looks more like a fox…

Whatever our little girl turns out to be, because she can get into things (as most puppies do), I had to out-fox her by creating some clever holiday decor.  So, if you have a new, young one around this Christmas, whether on 2 or 4 legs, I hope my ideas help you out too!  Also in this blog post, you’ll find unique & budget-friendly decorating ideas as well as DIY tutorials, so make yourself a cup of cocoa and enjoy the creativity!

THE FRONT PORCH

Because I created such a large display last year (click HERE to review), I chose to keep things simple outside, utilizing my trusty footed urns (you’ve seen these before! lol) again to hold natural, preserved wreaths, with a large red ornament in the middle of each.  The berry garland is actually 3 separate (4-foot) pieces.  HELPFUL HINT: attaching several smaller (less expensive) lengths together is easier than trying to find one, (expensive) long berry garland:

I found myself in a “Holly and Berries” mood, this year and it began with my outdoor bench.  HELPFUL HINTS:  Don’t hesitate to decorate outdoor furniture with garland (adding lights too!)  because it welcomes your guests with the “unexpected”.  And the mossy gift (on the bench seat) is simply a white box that I covered in moss, using glue… easy!

I love my Goat Cart!  And it turned out to be a great investment because it holds larger decorations, for every season!  Also, I’ve used it in my garden, yard and now, on my front porch.  How versatile is that?!! 🙂

The final front porch touch is an old sled I display every year (found years ago, at a local yard sale… in FLORIDA, no less! lol).  I usually add a “PLEASE SNOW” sign to it, but I think I’ve finally given up on that dream and added holly, berries and a skate to it instead.  In Florida, we CAN do ice! 😉

THE FOYER

The Holly and Berries snuck right in the front door and laid out beautifully in the Foyer also…. welcoming Christmas, with a little help from Santa, of course!

And here’s where the “clever” part comes in, for the first time.  Anyone who’s been a fan of The Seasonal Home for a while is probably familiar with the 2-tiered table that is usually in the foyer.  Knowing that a puppy (or child) could easily AND quickly clear off a shelf of easy-to-reach decorations, my idea was to temporarily shuffle some of my accent tables to new locations (in the home) for the season.  Check out how nicely a cabinet from the kitchen also fits under the mirror in the foyer!

THE LIVING ROOM

The Living Room is where the first tree went in The Seasonal Home.  I knew any tree I displayed would need to be elevated (out-of-the-way) to keep our little pup safe, so the unique & inexpensive idea I came up with is a Drum Stand tree base!  The total cost to make this was around $20 and here’s the DIY instructions:

CLICK on photo to better view the instruction details

I chose a color theme of black & gold along with frosty and musical (under the stars) accents.  If you look closely (at the tree below), you’ll see that I recycled the black branches from Halloween 2012, adding them into the tree for texture.  I also reused 2 silver drums from Christmas 2010 by cutting & adding a length of the black & gold reindeer gift wrap (used on the drum tree stand) and gold cord (to hide the gift wrap edge) so they coordinate, when added to the tree.

It’s so hard to find large, quality glass ornaments in black! Check out Seasons on the Web link (right hand column of this blog) to check out their huge ornament inventory!

And here’s the rest of the room!

HELPFUL HINT: boxes, gift wrapped in coordinating paper & ribbon make an inexpensive room accent for the holidays!

THE FAMILY ROOM

In the Family Room, I couldn’t place too many decorations or snow on The Seasonal Home hearth because of our new pup and her thieving ways.  And because she thinks she can carry away just about ANYTHING in her tiny mouth, I had to be sure I used something too large for her to consider… these lighted, faux gifts appear to be just perfect… so far!  (lol)

And here’s the rest of the Family Room

I’m starting to notice a “puppy” theme in this room (LOL)

And I simply can’t let a Christmas go by without highlighting a series of my ornaments, like these (Hallmark Windows Series) that feature children peeking into shop windows at Christmas time.  A cabinet or sideboard (with shelves) is the perfect place to display a collection.  HELPFUL HINT:  If you also have a collection of ornaments, consider trying something new by displaying them together (for maximum impact) instead of spreading them around the tree… it’s incredibly fun!

Here’s some close-ups so you can see how much fun adding small details (like snow & trees) can create!

THE KITCHEN

Another Christmas tree to be elevated!  And, of course, it should also make sense with the theme I chose –  Snowmen and Holiday Sweets to create the Frosty Sweet Shop!

I was inspired by a $500 Cupcake (themed) tree stand I saw at my holiday wholesaler.  Although it was beautiful, the cost to make mine was only $10.

Here’s the directions:

Once you place the Cupcake liner around your basket, it’s time to add frosting.  Lightly spray-paint polyester fiber fill (comes in a plastic bag at craft & discount box stores) and shape like frosting dripping over the edge of the Cupcake liner.  I used a light pink color of spray paint.  Finally, add small (matte or glitter-finish) ornaments to the fiber fill to create a look of candy sprinkles on the frosting.  I found a pick of several glittered ornaments at Target for only $2.00 and because each one was already on a piece of wire, it was easy to slip them into the fiber fill batting, individually.

And here’s the finished look –

The rest of the room –

HELPFUL HINT: Large foam snowflakes (Dollar Tree) make great winter-theme placemats!

HELPFUL HINT: the 6″ plastic snowflakes I found at the Dollar Tree this year fit perfectly into the chandelier to create instant ice-bling!

Light and motion collectible house by Department 56

KIRKLAND’S has wonderful holiday art… this one lights up!

HELPFUL HINT: Use holiday cards to help you decorate inexpensively! I used 3 inside the openings of this photo display & coordinated a little scene below them.

You’ll find even more details and decorations in this year’s HOLIDAY TOUR on YouTube… here’s the link:

Enjoy the Creativity!

Eileen

Using Paper products to help decorate your fireplace for Spring & Easter

In today’s marketplace, paper comes in so many forms and is a perfect fit for my creative, yet budget-conscious, brain.  So, if you’re looking for new ways to transform your fireplace from Winter to Spring (and Easter), read on because I think you’ll like the creative way I found to incorporate 3 different paper products to create 2 new designs.

IDEA #1

For the first fireplace look, SCRAPBOOK PAPER helped me create an “Art Comes Alive” look above The Seasonal Home’s family room mantel.

Tracing around a wood butterfly shape (Hobby Lobby – 50 cents) created the large butterflies and a cookie cutter (I already owned) helped me create the smaller butterflies.  Because I have a hard surface surrounding my fireplace, I was able to use dots of hot glue, from a low-melt glue gun, to attach my butterflies to this surface.  You could also use “Tack It” (office supply dept.) or COMMAND strips to attach them to more delicate surfaces.

I found the vintage frame at a thrift store ($3), lightly spray painted it white and placed it on the mantel.  [NOTE: Typically, these are reasonable if they don’t have artwork in them].  The yellow clay pots are a recycle from a look I created last Easter (https://seasonalhome.wordpress.com/2011/03/07/yellow-at-easter-its-not-just-for-chicks-anymore/ )… so, “zero” dollars.   The aqua, polka-dotted bunnies ($3.99 each) and the yellow, polka-dotted candles ($4.99 each) are both from Old Time Pottery.  The yellow vine came from a clearance section of one of my favorite local stores ($6.75) as did the aqua birdie ($1.99).  I picked up the yellow gingham ribbon (see clay pot trim & mantel inset) at Joann’s, etc.  for only $1.75 with a 50% off coupon and the large aqua flower at Hobby Lobby for $1.99.  If you’re familiar with my blog, you’ll recognize my white candlesticks, bird nests and eggs because they roam somewhere different, every year, in The Seasonal Home.

For Part #2 of this look, I wanted to transition my fireplace hearth from Winter to Spring.  In keeping with my nature look, I thought it would be a great idea to make a cushion, flanked by some green topiaries from around the house, to create a park bench feel and also, add additional seating for my Spring and Easter guests.  The aqua gingham fabric, buttons, yellow bias tape & rope insert as well as the 2 bed pillows – $15.00 (Walmart).  So, this entire idea cost $47 to create and I love the fresh look!

IDEA #2

For the second look, I used two different paper products – Green, plaid Hallmark gift wrap (love this stuff because the lines on the opposite side make it easy to cut straight! lol) and white poster board (50 cents), both from Walmart ($4).  I taped a large piece of gift wrap to the back wall & upper inset of the fireplace and removed the logs/grate, to replace it with Dept. 56 artificial grass ($14), edged out with artificial lettuce leaves, to create a base for my 2 sitting, Mom & baby bunnies and used fuzzy Christmas snowball ornaments for their tails.  Finally, I dotted the grass with a few small daisies and also sprinkled them on the mantel and around the large, white bunny cookie jar (sitting inside the cabbage plate) to create continuity. 

CLICK on any photo to enlarge

On the mantel, I used items you’ll also recognize from previous posts, including the wreath, which is the yellow & white daisy wreath from the post I shared above.  I simply added a few different colored flowers to it.   And of course, I simply cannot decorate for ANY holiday without filling up one of my apothecary jars.  This time I added a set of glittered Easter Eggs.

On the side table, you’ll recognize another one of my white candlesticks, on top of which I placed a small clay pot of pink daisies.  You can place SO many different things on top of candlesticks during different seasons, so I highly recommend investing in a set of these to help with your decorating.

This look would be hard to price out for you because I used many items I already had, but it turned out to be one of my favorite looks because it’s so bright & cheery!

Enjoy the Creativity & Happy Easter!

EILEEN

Jazzy Snowman Christmas!

One of my favorite finds this year was at Hallmark… their jazzy-looking Snowman Band!  They’re battery-operated and wireless, so you can place them anywhere you want, which made my display idea SO easy to do!  And when you push their buttons, these 4 frosty band pals play the lead in 2 songs each while the others chime in, soon after.  Their cool hats & sunglasses made me think of a Chicago or N’oleans Jazz Band, so I went with that look, using some inexpensive scrapbook paper in the background, a few inexpensive trees and dollar store fencing.  I finished it off with 2 sets of lampposts I picked up at 60% off this weekend and my street corner jazz band scene came to life.  Along with the photos, I’ve added a video so you can enjoy the action…. what will they think of next?!

Halloween Cookie Jar Vignette

If you’re not into the typical lighted, ceramic houses a lot of people display, in their homes, to create a little Halloween ambiance, I have an alternative for you.  Simply find yourself a cute Cookie jar (like this Haunted House one) to use instead.  Add a few figurines, fall leaves and a seasonal tree or two for an instant holiday scene.  It will not only provide you with a simple centerpiece for an adorable trick-or-treating scene, but also pull double-duty by storing yummy fall treats.  And the bonus… you won’t have to search for an outlet to light your display!
All of the elements in this vignette are usually easy to find on ebay.

Cookie Jar is by folk artist "Debbie Mumm". Figurines are by Hallmark and Dept. 56.

For more creative ideas, check out the ABOUT THE AUTHOR page!

Early request for a little CHRISTMAS!

I’m involved in a club that supports the year-round needs of a local homeless shelter.  The money to do this is raised through raffles (at our meetings) & the raffle items are provided by our sponsors, which are local Hallmark stores.

To thank them for their support, I frequently design store displays for any ornament collections they would like to feature.  I had an early call for a CHRISTMAS design this past month from one store because their ornament display went up in July.   I think my design is very versatile, so I thought it would be nice to share it with my readers.  Feel free to tweak it to meet your own decorative needs.  And if you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

The request was for a design that would feature a group of 5 Hallmark miniature ornaments.  The ornament set is part of the 2010 Hallmark line.  Each ornament is less than 2″ tall and, as a group, they are called “Peanuts on Ice”.  The Peanuts characters are all on blocks of ice, which was my inspiration for the tree design.

To make the main highlight in the design (the miniature skating ponds), I purchased a package of five 2-1/2″ (diameter) mirrors at Hobby Lobby (www.craftsetc.com).  I added plain, white glue around the outside edge (of each mirror) and coated the glue in clear (iridescent) glitter.  Once dry, I used a low melt glue gun to adhere the mirrors to different tree branches, spacing them out evenly.  You could also, however, glue a (gator-style) metal clip to the bottom of the mirror and use that to hold each individual mirror in place on their respective tree branches.  After I decorated the tree and added my mirrors, I hung the 5 miniature Peanuts character ornaments, each on a branch right above the center of a mirror.  I hope you can use this idea too!

[CLICK on any photo to view an enlarged version]

You could easily use this tree design for a collection of penguins, polar bears, snowmen, etc. ornaments.  And although the tree I decorated was only 2 feet tall (so it would properly fit into the Hallmark store display), don’t let that hold you back from enlarging this idea and using larger mirrors on a larger tree.  It’s all about scale, so if you use larger mirrors, simply create larger scenes!

Here are a few other designs I’ve come up with, in the past, to help Hallmark promote their ornaments and other products:

Wizard of Oz Characters Themed Wreath

Collector's Club Members Ornament Series "The Windows"

Peppermint & Food Themed Wreath

 

Animated Gingerbread House and mini Gingerbread Santa/Reindeer Set

Hall Family Ornament Collection



If you are enjoying my blog and creative ideas, please check out my brand new, Christmas Decorating DVD, available 11/15. Check out the right-hand column of this blog for details and thank you, in advance, for your support! :- )  Here’s a small sample of the DVD:

Chandelier Wreaths

I love to create the “unexpected” when I’m decorating for the holidays or seasons, and my guests love it too!

To create this “unexpected” look, make sure you choose a wreath that is light in weight.  This will be the one time you will WANT to check out the inexpensive wreaths because they are usually lightweight.  I cut 3 or 4 lengths of (non-wired) ribbon and tie them (in a knot) to the back side of the wreath, spacing them apart equally.   Then, I simply gather the other ends of the ribbon and intertwine them (through the chandelier chain) near the top of the chandelier.  I, then, tie them in a knot or use a pipe cleaner (extra ribbon or floral wire) to secure them to the top of my chandelier.  Finally, make a couple of bows and use those to hide the “knotted” mechanics, by placing them over this area on both the front & back.

Here is the fall version:

And here is a Christmas version.  NOTE that, in this version, I’ve added extra greenery, ornament balls and ribbon.  I’ve also used it to display my collection of Angel ornaments.  So let this design pull double duty for you, to highlight a grouping of ornaments as well.

Close-up, highlighting an ornament collection

If you are enjoying my creativity, please consider my book for yourself or as a gift – it has many more ideas for decorating AND ideas for creating the memories that go with it…. the most important thing of all to create.   I also am releasing my first, full-length Christmas Decorating DVD on 11/15.  If you like my style, this will provide you with many of my secrets .  Below is a preview and thank you, in advance, for your support! 😀