11.30.2011

Check Out the Competition!

Our pear green and sparkly tablescape has been officially entered into the Tablescape Contest, hosted by Centsational Girl. 

Centsational Girl

The contest just started, and there are already some beautiful entries. Go check out our stiff competition– maybe you'll get some great ideas for any holiday events you have coming up.

It's always interesting to see how different people interpret the holidays, and I have a feeling this blog party will be full of unique ideas. Check it out HERE. We are entry #5!

What do we plan to change from our small, 4-person set up to the 8-person table we will be hosting for the official church event next week?

First of all, I need more flatware. I don't have eight sets! I'm considering a cool DIY project to personalize some old flatware, so stay tuned for that.

I'm also looking to incorporate some burlap as a table linen, and I need to come up with a DIY napkin holder idea. That DIY napkin holder won't be much good if I don't find some coordinating napkins... I guess this is the difference between actually having dinner and just setting up a  pretty table. We need the practical things like napkins!

Anyway, at least we have a good start and know what we need to do before next Thursday. I'm super excited about our church event and can't wait to see some of my friends that I haven't seen in awhile. Who doesn't love a girls night with beautiful decor, delicious food and a wonderful Christmas message? It's going to be great!


* Winter Wednesday *
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11.29.2011

An Unconventional Holiday Tablescape

Next week, I'm hosting a table at my church Christmas party. It's an event where the ladies of the church volunteer to host and decorate their own tables, so that each table has its own unique flavor. Then we all wander around and admire the different styles before enjoying a Christmas program.

Anyway, when I found out that Kate of Centsational Girl was hosting a tablescape blog party, I thought it would be a perfect time to do a dress rehearsal before the big event. My best friend Kelsey helped me set up our patio table with what we have planned for the 8-person table at the event (on a smaller scale, of course) so we could see how it looks and what we want to add to it before next Thursday.

When I was presented with this opportunity, I knew I didn't want to do anything that just screams "Christmas." I wanted it to be fun and festive without the stereotypical red and green color scheme (not that there is anything wrong with red and green– my living room is sporting that look right now). My second thought was that I didn't want to spend tons of money on this event, and I would need to be resourceful, using what I already have.

So... It just so happens that I have a thing for pears, and I have a ton of pear ornaments on my Christmas tree. I decided to use the pears as my jumping off point for the table theme, and this is what we ended up with!




I wanted warm metallics to play up the beautiful pear green colors we had throughout the table, so we collected some different sparkly crystal or mercury glass pieces to add shimmer to the setting. Nothing says festive like a little sparkle, right?





Kelsey inherited the china from her grandmother, and it was perfect for our table. It would have been nice to use our own china, but I only received two sets from our wedding registry. Is the giving of china as a wedding gift an outdated practice? All I know is that my mother forced me to register for it!

The champagne gold chargers really beef up the presence of the china and add formality to the table. 



The place cards were so simple. I layered white and tan cardstock and wrote the names in a whimsical calligraphy style. I just love the simple neutral colors against the punchy green of the pears. I think that's why I love pears so much– that green color is so appealing!


Though the china has gold accents, we went with silver flatware to mix it up. The mixed metals work really well because the mercury glass throughout the centerpiece has touches both silver and gold, so it all makes sense together. 

Have I mentioned that I LOVE mercury glass? It's so beautiful. Once we lit the candles, this tablescape really came alive. The reflective surfaces of the mercury glass and crystal bounced the candlelight all over the table, and the effect was warm and magical. 







I had the manzanita branch left over from our wedding decor, but I chose to glitter some branches from our own trees to add another dimension to the centerpiece. Using spray adhesive and Martha Stewart Smoky Quartz glitter, I crafted up some simple branches. That particular color of glitter is my favorite– it's subtle and gorgeous. Leave it to Martha to master the perfect glitter!








As far as table linens, we used a vintage white embroidered tablecloth that I inherited from my grandmother and layered it with two linen table runners from CB2 (a wedding gift). The vintage cloth and linen color added a softness that really complimented the shimmering metallics in the tablescape.

It's ironic that the blog party contest has a HomeGoods gift card as its prize because so much of my tablescape is from HomeGoods! That store is definitely my favorite place to go when shopping for my home.

Let's talk about where I got all of this stuff in case you saw something you like!

Source List:

Large mercury glass vase: HomeGoods ($15)
Pear ornaments: HomeGoods
Sparkly pine cones: Hobby Lobby
Mercury glass votive holders: Target ($1 each)
Oversized pear: HomeGoods
China: vintage
Gold dotted bowl:  DIY/thrift store (Read about it HERE.)
Crystal candlesticks: HomeGoods
Green pears: HomeGoods
Manzanita Branch: HomeGoods
White tablecloth: vintage
Table runners/placemats: CB2
Champagne gold chargers: Michaels
Sparkly berry branches: Hobby Lobby
Flatware: Dillards
Patio table: Target
If I forgot anything, let me know. 

Fortunately for me, I already had many of the items I used for this tablescape. That helped me to keep the budget down, which is especially important this time of year.

If you want to recreate something like this without buying a lot of stuff, do what I did and think about what you already have around the house (or in your Christmas boxes in storage). I have started to collect pears, so it was a no-brainer for me to go in that direction so I wouldn't have to spend a lot of money. You may have some neat items around your home that would look beautiful when arranged as a centerpiece!

So, now that the table is set...

* Let's eat! *

Now this post is linked up to the first party and another great blog party thrown by Layla at The Lettered Cottage. Check it out HERE!


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11.27.2011

Italy: Color Inspiration

We have returned from our trip to Italy! We had such a great time– it was a once in a lifetime trip.

Throughout the trip, I was charmed by the ancient architecture and crumbling facades. I was particularly smitten with the colors they used for their homes, from walls to roofs and windows and doors.

Here are a few of my favorite photos. Maybe they will inspire you like they inspired me!

How great is that orangey-yellow mixed with the red flowers?

Rome

Rome

 This blue/green door was to-die-for!
Rome

Mustard. 

Rome

Rome

Florence


Florence

Don't even get me started on the vine-covered entrances! I loved every single one. 


Siena
Rome

Flower boxes under the windows? Amazing. 

San Gimignano

San Gimignano

Fall colors at the Tuscan farms? My jaw dropped. 


Tuscany, Chianti region

Tuscany, Chianti region

Tuscany, Chianti region

 Venice had the same colors as the rest of the Italian cities we visited, but the striking blue color of the water intensified the effect and made the city incredibly captivating.  








And who doesn't like black and white with a pop of color? It looks especially cute on this round little gondolier. 

Doesn't he look like a character from a movie?




Italy is just as beautiful as you think it will be, even during the winter.  The husband and I both agreed that our day trip through Tuscany was our favorite part of the vacation. If you ever get the chance to visit Florence, try to take a day trip out into the Tuscan countryside to see the rolling hills and beautiful views. I promise it is SO worth the effort!

San Gimignano
It was a long trip back yesterday, and it felt so good to sleep in our own bed. The beds in Italy are rock hard with paper-thin pillows! Anyway, we got a great night's sleep last night and are generally back in the swing of things, even with the 8 hour time change. 

I'm working on a special holiday tablescape for both my church event and the blog contest at Centsational Girl. I can't wait to share it with you!


* Lazy Laundry Sunday *


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11.18.2011

Buon Viaggio!

The Happy Homebodies are boarding a plane for Italy tomorrow morning, so I'll be away from the blog for Thanksgiving week. I hope you have a wonderful holiday!

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I'll be back next weekend with pictures and stories from the trip, and I have many Christmas decorating crafts and ideas to share in the coming weeks. Can't wait to jump into the holiday season headfirst!



* Buon Viaggio (Bon Voyage) *
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11.17.2011

* All That Glitters *

I'm really feeling glitter and sparkles this holiday season!

What holiday trends are you loving right now?

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 I'm hosting a table at our church event, Christmas by Candlelight. Different women at the church volunteer to host tables, which we decorate in whichever beautiful style we like. It's a very girly event for the ladies at the church, and we all invite our friends to come ooh and ahh over the tables while we chow down and enjoy the Christmas message and music.

Anyway, I'm very excited about my table! My best friend (and former roomie- she moved out last week) is helping me plan the decor. I really love pears and already had a bunch of them worked into my Christmas decor, so I chose that as a jumping off point. We all know I can't afford to buy totally new stuff, so using my favorite pears was the easiest way to go. My mother asked me if I would be including a partridge with my pear decor, and the answer is no. Sorry, partridge lovers. Birds aren't really my thing.

My table is going to have that pear green color combined with really pretty warm metallics– including lots of sparkle and shine like the photos above. I think that sparkly, glamorous items look especially charming with natural elements, so I'll be balancing all of the gold and glitter with some burlap and wood. I'll be sharing all of my DIY ideas for the table on the blog, so look for that in the coming weeks!

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One thing I love about the holidays is that there are so many different ways you can interpret holiday decor. We know that no one at our event will interpret the holiday theme in exactly the same way because Christmas decor is so diverse! What type of Christmas decor do you prefer? Do you like a traditional red and green look, or do you lean toward the white Christmas theme? Maybe you're like me and you love sparkles, or maybe you love unconventional Christmas colors like purple and blue. I'd love to hear what scheme you're going with this year– leave me a note in the comments!




* Sparkle. *
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