Saturday, February 2, 2013

Christmas in an English Country House

Christmas in an English Country House

Tonight I finished packing the last of my Christmas decorations away.  It is always a little bittersweet as I change my theme each year.  2012's theme was "Christmas in an English Country House".  This past Christmas I was digging through the attic and came across an old cardboard box containing some rosettes from my horse-show days.  Although some of the colors had faded, they were still in pretty good condition considering they are 30+ years old!  I was planning a natural woodland theme for the tree and decided to add the ribbons.  I found a great copper English hunting horn at the antique mall that was my tree topper along with sprays of peacock and pheasant feathers.  The peacock feathers were a nod  to George, the resident peacock at the barn where we boarded our horses.  It wasn't unusual to see pheasants, deer,and even the occasional fox  when you were out for a ride.  

19th century English Secretary with double desks

A garland of acorns I "borrowed" from my Fall decorations as well as shades of copper, bronze and gold lent an English-country feel.  So the nostalgia bug bit me and I thought about growing up in the country and took my cue from there.  I picked ornaments from my collection that represented the country a fox, horses, a pheasant, feathers, pinecones, a pair of wellies, a foxhound, an antique bridal rosette, and the horse show ribbons.  I had found some great crystal garland at a yard sale this past summer for some added shimmer.

The mantle featured a garland of natural greens, magnolia leaves, berries, pinecones,
antler shed and pea hen feathers.  A carved white goose, an old reproduction I
purchased from a flea market before I was married took center stage

Lots of natural greens both faux and real draped the tops of cabinets and spilled from baskets and tucked into shelves.  The spicy scent of clove-studded pomanders greeted you as you walked through the door.  

We rearranged furniture to accommodate the tree.  I "borrowed" my silk plaid curtains from my upstairs guest room and moved the red and gold plaid curtains to the dining
room.  I found a great faux leather ottoman at a thrift shop with built-in storage and the pair of end tables at a yard sale .  The large engraving  of a blacksmith came from the antique mall for my birthday last summer.  The room is back to its English country roots,  when I had been moving toward a decidedly French feel.

I am like a dog with a bone when I get an idea in my head.  I also pulled the vintage hunt print pillow from the office for the chair by the tree.  It was a lot of fun putting it together.  Well on to the next project.

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