The magic of the holidays often starts with decorating your home. You deck the halls with fresh-cut holly or evergreen boughs and garland. You dig through storage bins and boxes to bring out your precious, timeworn treasures. You might even add a couple of fresh new décor ideas here and there.
But after the celebrations are over, there’s always so much packing up and putting away to do—and that’s never a joy!
What if sprucing up the house was more effortless, more organic, more like the French do it in Provence? You’d have much less to pack up in January. And we promise, the décor will still be just as breathtaking as ever.
Here are a few ways to style your home for the holidays with gorgeous pieces that you’ll love to leave out all year round.
The colors red and green time-out after the season winds down, but things that shimmer with a little glitz can definitely find a place in everyday décor. We love dressing a buffet or mantel with silvery mercury glass. Our sparkly La Vielle Votive Holder sets a wonder-filled tone for the season, but kept out through the winter it gives a room that special occasion feeling, any day of the week.
Add a few of our Antique Mercury Glass Boxes on a side table; top them with bay leaves, whole cloves, or small pinecones and they’ll scent and sparkle. Then, when you’re ready, move them to the boudoir or vanity and fill them with rose petals, lavender, or pearls. So beautiful and so versatile.
Another one of our favorites is our hand-gilt Mediterranean Artichokes. Pile them up in a gorgeous bowl on table or sideboard, or put one at each plate with a place card tucked between its golden leaves. They symbolized health and abundance to the ancient Greeks, and they’re a longtime favorite of the stylish French. And come January, scatter them around the hearth, in the basket of firewood, or on a windowsill in the kitchen to remind you of nature’s riches.
One more simple, Provencal way to make a room gleam with magic this season is with our phenomenal Metallic Flameless Candles. Group several of them together, or create an arrangement by placing them under our vintage Glass Domes. The look is awe-inspiring and later, both candles and domes are endlessly useful.
Trade out the traditional poinsettia and spruce garland with our stately and graphic preserved Potted Boxwood Collection. These vibrant green cones and spheres in limestone pots are miniatures of the ones you see in French Renaissance gardens. String them with tiny white lights or tie a French Blue Plaid ribbon around the pot and they’re ready for the festivities. And, because they are preserved, the green will never fade—just right for use all four seasons dressing up a countertop or forgotten corner.
Another brilliant example of a twist on the traditional is to forgo the classic pine wreath and go with our wrought iron Wreath Candle Holder instead. At the center of the table, or taking center stage on the mantel, this dramatic décor item brings impeccable style and illumination. And its classic look is appropriate all year long.
Much of the décor that’s prevalent at the holiday season in European countries takes its cue from woodsy wonderlands. Think Hans Christian Andersen. Our Birch Reindeer, and Great White Owls are perfectly adorable examples. Of course they cast a storybook spell when placed in and around the Christmas tree or on a decorated mantel. But also imagine them as part of a winter display next to a frosty February windowpane.
The French have long known that a little glamour is seasonless—especially when it’s the vintage kind. Our Tin Ornaments are a great example. They’re handmade of pressed tin, hand-finished for an antique feel, and strung with a gold ribbon. Like architectural fragments off centuries-old cathedrals, they add something extra to your tree or tied onto gifts, but they’ll also shine, yearlong, hanging from the linen closet doorknob or strung between the panels on a drapery rod.
And as soon as we saw our Bastia Apothecary Jars we knew they were just right for our Christmas in Provence. Made of glimmering mercury glass, they are etched and gilded in India, They give height, glow and glamour to a dining or serving table while entertaining, and elegance throughout the year.
Draw inspiration from Mother Nature to set the stage for the holiday celebrations and you’ll never go wrong. That’s exactly how the people in the little towns and villages of the French provincial countryside do it. They are thankful for nature’s gifts and borrow them to bring an effortless, organic look to their homes for the holidays.
Consider our whimsical Birch Tree Candleholders. The birch bark is beautifully textural and signals the snowy river and thick woods of your favorite holiday songs. Propped with some of our sweet woodland creatures like the Eagle Owl Ornament or the Birch Reindeer and the ensemble is picturesque all winter long. Just like our Bird’s Nest Collection and Robin’s Egg Ornaments, these pieces are imaginative embellishments for the tree that can be re-imagined well into 2015. For example, tuck some of our Robin’s Egg Ornaments inside our Basse Box and welcome spring!