Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas Greens: Simple secrets from a former florist.

Have you ever wondered how florists and decorators put together those beautiful displays of over the top holiday greens?

Turns out it is easy, and cheap! Follow along to learn how...

Start with a clean surface, and arrange your big pieces, I am a bog fan of "use what you got" when decorating, so I used the two lamps that we keep in the window, as well as a fern brought in for the winter, two upside down tomato cages (barely visible in this photo) and some over turned pots to act as pedestals.


Start layering in your foundation greens. These are yews trimming from my yard. Any fine leafed or needled evergreen works for this part. If you can, use 2-3 different varieties for added texture. Work from the outside in to hide the cut ends of the branches.


Next, introduce your accent greens, these should be broad leafed and preferably a different color than the base layer. Here I am using verigated euonymus. (Also from my yard-I should note, these are pretty invasive, and I do not recommend planting them, but they came with the house and can take the abuse they are given way down in front at the bus stop. I take care to keep them cut back and cut off all the berries, which add another layer of interest to my decorations.)


Now it is time for some twiggy branches, preferably with some berries. I used trimmings from my crabapples. In this picture you can see how I used the greens to obscure the base of the tomato cage.


Here's a detail shot by the pots.

It was looking a little thin, and I don't have anything scented in the yard. So when we bought our tree, I asked for scraps. They happily gave me a pile of fir cuttings to take home. I just tucked them in where I needed more fluff, and the house smelled great in no time.
Finally, I added ornaments, lights, buffalo snow and snowmen.
Here's the window with out the baubles...
...and here it is all baubled up. (With my half finished new slip cover.)


Aside from the giant window, I also had three mantles to decorate down stairs. Here is the living room mantle in process...

...and finished!


Detail shot, greens and a candle... lights and ornaments!


Here is the dining room mantle decorated for Thanksgiving...

...then fluffed up and refreshed for Christmas.


And the kitchen mantle/pot rack. I used what is usually up there, and just added greens.

Here's the kitchen table. I made a simple burlap wreath and added seasonal bows to it and the potted Rosemary, and stuck a train in the window. Easy peasy.
Hope you enjoyed the tour. Happy decorating!


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