Once upon a time, my favorite holiday decorations might have looked something like these:
Nowadays, though, my favorite favorite favorite Christmas decorations are those at other people’s houses, preferably behind baby gates or otherwise inaccessible to small children. Of course, if someone wanted to come to my house in advance of Christmas, set everything up, and then return around new years to set all the Christmas decorations up, I wouldn’t say no. Even if it meant a pink tree.
No worries, there’s really no rush. Thanksgiving is only just over, so no one will be expecting you to bust out the holiday decorations. Or will they? I know some people’s families want to see a tree in the living room as soon as the turkey is in the Tupperware.
If that sounds like yours, maybe you can buy yourself some time this season by hanging up this adorable felted wool wreath from Viva Terra and letting everyone know that the tree will be up by tomorrow at the latest. Even if that’s not exactly truthful.
Halloween decorations… no problem, right? You grab some creepy decor, put it up, and you’re done. If you have kids, that is. Then Dollar Store paper pumpkins are usually the order of the day. But if you have time to get crafty and aren’t afraid of little hands undoing your handiwork, you can decorate for Halloween with a little more class.
One thing I’m very thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day is all of the readers who stop by to check out what’s new at Manolo for the home and to share their thoughts with me. It’s a privilege to write for all of you, so thanks! And happy Thanksgiving to everyone in the states!
(Photo by Lane & Anne)
Thanksgiving, at least in the States, is less than two weeks away, and for the second year in a row The Beard and I will be serving up dinner here at our very own home. Our extended families will be elsewhere, and we will miss them as we chow down on a Celebration Roast instead of the turkey they’ll be eating. Last year we had a guest, but this year the roster of diners will be limited to ourselves and the baby who can eat just enough real food to enjoy her own Thanksgiving feast.
Our table? Will be simple. We resist the urge to serve up the mashed and stuffing on plates and in bowls embellished with gaudy cartoons of pilgrims and Indigenous Americans. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, though if you were to ask me I’d tactfully suggest steering clear of that whole bushel of iconography. The holidays should not be an excuse to lose one’s sense of good taste.
So what have we got here…
Personalized napkins are awesome, eliminating as they do the need for place cards. Plus, guests can take them home at the end of the meal! Country Living has simple directions for the DIY crowd.
Printing coordinating menus, place cards, wine glass labels, and other paper goods for the table is easy. Just choose a color palette to coordinate with your tablescape and clip art to jazz things up a little. Conversely, sites like Paper & Cake sell print-at-home kits that make printing everything you need for your Thanksgiving table easy-peasy.
Martha Stewart’s Thanksgiving tables range from the fresh and cool to the modern to the downright dowdy, complete with pine cone turkeys. Note that pine cone turkeys are fun for the very young and the very young at heart, but do look silly. Can’t help that.
This table was DwellStudio founder Christiane Lemieux’s American Thanksgiving design, featuring plenty of DwellStudio products, natch. It’s sort of busy and understated at the same time, which isn’t entirely off putting.
Love the pitcher. Like the use of leaves. Love the chairs. Love love love the sunshine! My ideal Thanksgiving would be hosted by someone else (preferably a vegetarian, but I’m not picky) in a sunny and very warm locale. Screw autumn.
Finally, here’s more of what you can do with printable templates from Paper & Cake. Yum!
I just received the season’s first invitation to a Halloween party. I know, I was just as surprised as you no doubt are. Autumn won’t even begin for another twelve or so minutes. But now that I hang with mommas and babies more often than I hang with 20-something hipsters, I guess I’m going to have to get used to extreme advance warning when it comes to holiday parties. Fair enough.
The invitation did get me thinking about Halloween and Halloween decorations and especially Halloween candy, but mostly about decorations since I do write a home and living blog. A quick sweep of Amazon reveals just what I thought it would: goth coffins, bloody handprint cling film, angry cats, severed heads, and goofy grinning pumpkins. There are even Halloween trees and Halloween treesHalloween tree decorations, if you can believe it.
Luckily, decorating for Halloween and other holidays doesn’t have to mean throwing good taste out the window. Suzanna Frosch and Blake Tovin‘ of New York’s lower Hudson Valley demonstrate that you can get ready for a night of ghosts and ghouls without sacrificing your home’s exterior to the Great Pumpkin.
Following their lead involves little more than a pair of scissors and some paper. Country Living has great Halloween decoration templates from white chocolate spiderwebs to upscale jack-o’-lantern designs, and of course, spooky bat stencils.
I am consistantly surprised at how many Easter decorations I’ve seen in recent years. Back in my day — if I may be allowed the luxury of playing at being old — people hung decorations for Christmas and Halloween and that was about it. You’d see the occasional Hanukkah decoration, but they weren’t at all common, and there were very, very few outdoor Easter decorations, if any, hung on neighborhood homes.
That meant no lights…
No Easter flags…
And certainly no inflatable bunnies on choppers… I mean, really? An inflatable Easter bunny riding a motorcycle? So you tell me: