ULTIMATE HOLIDAY DECORATING GUIDE
HOME TOURS DECK THE HALLS
ideas for every room CLEVER WAYS TO CHOOSE & USE RIBBONS
TREES + MANTELS + WREATHS + GIFT WRAPS
contents CHRISTMAS IDEAS 2016
10 Steal Our Cover: Behind the Scene Copy our stunning ombré tree for your own Christmas look.
12 Get the Facts: Faux vs Real Which is better? Find the right Christmas tree for you.
14 Decorating: Merry & Bright Vibrant hues make this home’s holiday extra happy.
18 Entertaining: Perfect Taste Express Christmas cheer—from fun to fancy—with inspired table settings.
24 Winter Wonders Kelly Rinzema’s lakefront home Christmas decor features a merry take on winter sports and family fun.
34 Midas Touch Add a golden element to holiday decor with these gilded paper crafts for tree, garland, wreath, and more.
43 12 Ways to Dazzle A sparkling palette and use-what-you-love attitude make Kristin Cadwallader’s home holiday perfect.
50 Color Shift Transfer a popular clothing fashion trend—ombré—to the home with a blush-to-merlot palette of reds.
34 BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 1
74 56 Decking the Halls A bold palette—lime green, bright blue, chocolate brown—graces this Virginia home year-round. During the holidays, it gets an extra dose of festive.
66 Natural Beauties Lavish layers of fresh and faux embellishments turn ready-made wreath forms into fabulous holiday decor.
74 Handmade Holiday Artist, mom, and blogger Lucy Akins welcomes Christmas to her Ontario home with her own decorations, creations, and art projects.
84 Tie One On These ribbon crafts go beyond the gift wrap.
90 Sparkle & Shine Fresh greens—from trees and garlands to forced bulbs and miniature evergreens—mix with glittering metallics in this Connecticut home.
98 Putting on the Ritz Gifts get an extra touch of wow with handmade tags, bows, and embellishments.
110 Red, White & Yule Scandinavian style fills this Upstate New York home with splashes of red, white, and Christmas cheer.
04 Editor’s Letter 08 On The Web 120 Resources
2 Christmas Ideas 2016
For more projects and inspiration, visit sizzix.com/blog/holidaycheer
Sizzix Products Used:
A. Stocking: Stocking, 660914; Christmas Tree #3, 660276 B. Red Frame: Christmas Tree #9, 660685 C. Garland: Gingerbread Man #4, 660678; Circles & Icons, Hearts & Star, 661101 D. Snowflake Tag: Tag Card, 660684; Snowflake #4, 660677 E. Peace Card: Peace Phrase #2, 660682 F. Mason Jar: Holly & Berries #3, 660679 G. Embroidery Hoop: Joy Phrase #3, 660681; Hope Phrase, 660680; Holly & Berries #3, 660679 H. Gift Box: Holly & Berries #3, 660679; Tag Card, 660684
Happy holidays! The most merry time of the year has arrived, and here are a multitude of ideas and projects to help you create beautiful trees, wreaths, wrappings, ornaments, and more—virtually everything you need to deck your halls! The Christmas season is the most heartwarming, too. In this issue, you’ll see beautifully decorated homes and read about how each family celebrates with personal traditions and activities. We are thankful these families were willing to share with us. Here at our office, we donate the Christmas tree on our cover each year to a worthy cause that benefits children with cancer (see page 11 for details). When we contact manufacturers for product, they immediately donate what we need. Thank you to Balsam Hill for their spectacular Christmas tree, The Whitehurst Company for the multitude of ornaments, and Paper Mart for the rolls and rolls of ribbon for this year’s tree. Our gratitude also extends to you, our readers. May you have a beautiful and generous
4 Christmas Ideas 2016
THIS is going straight to the top of my Christmas list this year!!! - Michelle C.
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Meredith National Media Group President | TOM HARTY EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENTS President, Parents Network CAREY WITMER President, Women’s Lifestyle THOMAS WITSCHI President, Meredith Digital JON WERTHER Chief Marketing Officer NANCY WEBER Chief Revenue Officer MICHAEL BROWNSTEIN General Manager DOUG OLSON SENIOR VICE PRESIDENTS Chief Digital Officer ANDY WILSON Digital Sales MARC ROTHSCHILD Research Solutions BRITTA CLEVELAND VICE PRESIDENTS Business Planning and Analysis ROB SILVERSTONE Content Licensing LARRY SOMMERS Corporate Sales BRIAN KIGHTLINGER Direct Media PATTI FOLLO Brand Licensing ELISE CONTARSY Communications PATRICK TAYLOR Human Resources DINA NATHANSON Strategic Sourcing, Newsstand, Production CHUCK HOWELL Chief Strategy Officer Kim Martin Creative Content Leader Dana Points
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer STEPHEN M. LACY President, Meredith Local Media Group PAUL KARPOWICZ
Vice Chairman | MELL MEREDITH FRAZIER In Memoriam | E. T. MEREDITH III, 1933–2003
For reuse and reprint requests, contact CLpermissions@meredith.com. PRINTED IN THE USA
The Sculpey Way to Celebrate! premo! Sculpey is a premium oven-bake clay, the choice of clay enthusiasts. • Artist color palette for precise color mixing • Pure pigments create densely saturated colors • Holds fine details, maintains crisp lines • Premium strength and durable after baking • Also available in Accents – glitters, granite, pearls, translucent and metallics
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GET MORE @ BHG.COM WHEN IT COMES TO CHRISTMAS DECORATING, BHG.COM HAS YOUR ENTIRE WISH LISTâ€”FROM TABLETOPS TO TREE TOPPERS, ORNAMENTS TO GIFTABLES.
LIVING ROOM TOURS
FESTIVE BOW HOW-TOS
Take a peek into real homes for style secrets and tree-decorating tips that you can use to transform your own space for the holidays.
The gifts under the tree get an upgrade with three simple bow ideas. Watch our videos to see how!
MASON JAR CHRISTMAS CRAFTS
CANDY CANE HACKS
With these easy crafts, a humble Mason jar becomes a holiday gift for hard-to-buy-for buddies.
8 Christmas Ideas 2016
Use this holiday candy favorite in five fresh new ways: in cookies, in a mixed drink ... even as part of your morning cup of joe.
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STEAL OUR COVER
1 TREE A pre-lit artificial tree saves the time and effort of wrapping each individual branch in strands of twinkle lights. The 9-foot-tall slender silhouette fits beautifully in a narrow space.
2 RIBBONS Pick ribbons with similar weight, width, and style in your chosen shades. Wired satin ribbon is a good choice because it retains its shape. Remember: The bottom of the tree will require more ribbon than the top.
BEHIND THE SCENE
GO AHEAD—YOU CAN HAVE IT! MAKE OUR COVER TREE YOUR OWN HOLIDAY MASTERPIECE. SIMPLY CHOOSE YOUR COLOR PALETTE—OURS RANGES FROM BLUSH TO BURGUNDY— AND DECORATE YOUR WAY TO BEAUTIFUL.
Produced by LINDSAY BERGER Photography by ADAM ALBRIGHT Written by LACEY HOWARD
10 Christmas Ideas 2016
Continue the color palette with multiple sizes of glass or plastic ball ornaments in both matte and shiny finishes. You’ll need more dark-hue ornaments than light. Decorate the tree from the inside out, hanging ornaments from the trunk to the branch tips.
Duck The Hals
SHARING THE SPIRIT The Christmas Ideas cover tree shines on beyond our magazine pages. Each year we donate the decorated tree to the Festival of Trees at Blank Children’s Hospital in Des Moines, a five-day public event that is the main fund-raiser for the hospital. In its 30-year history, the festival has provided more than $7.4 million in financial support for Child Life, the Center for Advocacy & Outreach, and other special programs and projects that serve the needs of Central Iowa children and their families. In recent years, attendees have been able to purchase raffle tickets to win the decorated tree.
See Resources for "Color Shift" on page 120.
T H E
O R I G I N A L
B R A N D
D U C T
T A P E
View hundreds of colors & designs and free holiday project ideas at:
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GET THE FACTS
REAL TREE THE GREEN MACHINE
EASY CARE An artificial tree promises to not leave your gifts, tree skirt, and floor peppered with needles. If you want to avoid the need to water and the mess of shedding, stick with a faux tree.
NOT MADE IN THE USA According to Consumer Reports (consumerreports .org), in 2012, 97 percent of artificial trees were imported from China. The plastic trees are not recyclable and eventually go in a landfill.
FAUX VS REAL WHEN IT COMES TO CHRISTMAS TREES, THE DEBATE BETWEEN FAUX AND REAL CAN RESULT IN A HOUSE DIVIDED. HERE ARE A FEW FACTS TO HELP YOU DECIDE WHICH WAY TO GREEN.
Real evergreen trees are easily recycled into mulch once the decorations are put away. The most eco-friendly way to enjoy a tree is to buy one with a root ball. Plant the tree post-season and it will be around for years to come.
MINIMAL CARBON FOOTPRINT Buying from a tree farm doesn’t contribute to deforestation. Plus live trees produce oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide, cleaning the atmosphere. Buy local to avoid shipping.
Written by LACEY HOWARD
FAKE IT ALL THE WAY Current technology has premium artificials looking, feeling, and even smelling (thanks to spray-on artificial scents) more real than ever. Faux trees can also be purchased already strung with white or colored lights.
NOT A FIRE HAZARD According to the National Fire Protection Association, the risk of Christmas tree-related fires is small. Electrical failures and burning candles are morecommon house fire culprits.
Fake trees are made of PVC and may include lead and other additives. Heed the warning that a fake tree may shed lead-laced dust— do not inhale or eat any dust or parts that may fall from it.
Real trees often require multiple applications of pesticides during their eight-year growth period. They can also bring mites, lice, ticks, moths, or other insects into your home.
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STORAGE with STYLE
Craft some memories, and store it away the stylish way. All you need is a little inspiration and a fully stocked Creative Options® organizer. Find out more
HOLIDAY AT HOME Homeowner Stacey Blake, who blogs at Design Addict Mom, has no qualms about decorating with intense color.
MERRY & BRIGHT TRY THESE QUICK TIPS FOR DECKING YOUR HOME AND HOLIDAY IN COLORFUL CHRISTMAS CHEER. Written by JODY GARLOCK Photography by DAVID LAND/PAT BATES
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2 1. EXPRESS YOURSELF Stacey goes bright and bold in her North Carolina home—her holiday includes pink, green, and orange. “I can’t remember the last time I did red and green at Christmas,” she says. “I like to take risks with my decorating.”
2. WARM WELCOME At the front door, Stacey’s playful style is on display in two boxwood wreaths joined with ribbon and embellished with bright ornaments. “It was an easy way to add a little wow,” she says.
3. HANGING OUT
As cards arrive in the mail, Stacey clips them to a ribbon to create a colorful garland of personalized messages and handmade paper ornaments.
: APPLY STRIPS OF WASHI TAPE
TO DRESS CLOTHESPINS IN FESTIVE ATTIRE.
5 4. BOLD STATEMENT The orange sofa in the living room goes against the usual decorating rule of keeping large pieces neutral. “Orange is my favorite color,” Stacey says. “I say go for whatever works for your room.”
5. PRESENT TENSE Stacey punctuates her holiday color scheme by wrapping gifts in coordinating patterned papers and a variety of thick and thin ribbons to add layers of color.
6. NOTE WORTHY
Stacey challenges herself to a simple tree art project every year. When colorful sticky notes caught her eye, she knew she had this year's material.
7. DAILY TREAT
: COLOR-BLOCK STOCKINGS
USE BOLD, SHAPELY ORNAMENTS TO IDENTIFY EACH FAMILY MEMBER. 16 Christmas Ideas 2016
A download-and-assemble village (mrprintables.com) counts the days until Christmas. Each morning, Stacey’s children eagerly claim the little surprises she hides inside.
Tell us what you think and you could
WIN A $500 GIFT CARD! Take the survey at bhg.com/christmasideassurvey No survey participation required to enter or win.
QUICK TIP Take Advent calendar houses to the tree by adding hangers. Simply use a needle and thread strung through the roofs.
7 For Sources, see page 120.
NO PURCHASE OR SURVEY PARTICIPATION IS NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. Subject to Oicial Rules at www.bhg.com/christmasideassurvey. The Christmas Ideas Survey Sweepstakes begins at 12:01 a.m. C.T. on 9/27/16 and ends at 11:59 p.m. C.T. on 12/26/16. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States, and the District of Columbia, 18 years or older. Limit one (1) entry per person and per email address. Void where prohibited. Sponsor: Meredith Corporation.
Host holiday affairs to remember—from a casual luncheon to a glittering evening gathering—with tablescapes that spark Christmas magic. Designed by BECKY LAU EKSTRAND | Written by LACEY HOWARD | Photography by JAY WILDE
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NATURAL SELECTION Earthy elements such as ferns, succulents, and moss are elevated to elegant when arranged on silver platters and glass cake stands and placed under sparkling cloches. Seasonal greenery tucked into a mercury glass votive holds a chic place card and is a take-home gift for guests.
SNOWY SPLENDOR Inspired by winter scenes in her own backyard, designer Becky Lau Ekstrand created a fresh snow scene peppered with red birds. Spray-painted white branches and pinecones give the tabletop texture. Spruce up everyday dishes and flatware with faux berry sprigs.
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COLLECTED MEMORIES Vintage dishes, ornaments, and bottle-brush trees gather to celebrate favorite collections. A vintage-feel greeting (photocopied from a Christmas card) tucks between pink Depression glass plates. A vintage brooch serves as a napkin ring.
EVERYTHING LOOKS BEAUTIFUL UNDER GLASS. IT IS SUCH AN EASY WAY TO MAKE THINGS SPARKLE.
GOLD STANDARD For a special gathering, a dazzling mix of silver and gold gives each place setting an air of glamour. Gift wrap stands in as a graphic-print table runner, while a traditional gold charger pairs with a white dinner plate and a wow-worthy salad plate for a stunning setting.
For Sources, see page 120.
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PARTY CHECKLIST planning
[ 2–3 WEEKS AHEAD ]
[ MORNING OF THE PARTY ]
1 Invite guests, asking for dietary needs
1 Set up bar area for cocktail hour (ice
such as food allergies to seafood, gluten, dairy, or nuts.
1 Order rental equipment (chairs, tables, serving dishes, beverage and wine glasses, dinnerware, flatware, tablecloths and cloth napkins, or any other equipment needs).
1 Purchase party supplies (decorations, elegant paper napkins, candles, table favors, or any other needs).
1 Enlist the help of a friend to assist you in serving, or perhaps hire a teenager to help with prep, serving, and cleanup.
1 Select or create music playlist. [ 1 WEEK BEFORE THE PARTY ]
1 Create menu. 1 Make grocery shopping list, including recipe ingredients and beverages. Purchase liquor, wine, and mixers.
bucket, beverage dispenser, punch bowl, mixers, glasses, napkins).
1 Set out small plates, napkins, glassware, flatware (if any) for hors d’oeuvres.
1 Set out dessert plates, serving pieces, and dessert flatware in working area.
1 Set out coffee server, cups and saucers, sugar and creamer on a tray in service area for the dessert course. Set up coffeemaker with coffee and water (to be turned on when ready to serve dinner).
[ NOON ]
1 Assemble salad, cut up garnishes; keep chilled in refrigerator.
1 Make sauces or salad dressings. 1 Touch up floors, empty trash cans, doublecheck table settings.
[ 2 HOURS BEFORE GUESTS ARRIVE ] [ 2–3 DAYS BEFORE THE PARTY ]
1 Perform household cleaning tasks inside and outside of the house.
1 Complete setup tasks—iron tablecloths and napkins, set up extra chairs and tables if necessary, make place cards and menu cards.
1 Set the table(s) one day to one week prior to the dinner party.
1 Shop for groceries, remembering food and
1 Ice the wine, beer, nonalcoholic beverages and mixers; set out bar condiments.
1 Finalize making or baking hors d’oeuvres. 1 Get dressed for the party. [ 15 MIN. BEFORE GUESTS ARRIVE ]
1 Light the candles, start the fire in the fireplace, turn on the music.
1 Set out hors d’oeuvres.
[ WHEN GUESTS ARRIVE ] [ DAY BEFORE OR DAY OF THE PARTY ]
1 Purchase flowers and plenty of ice. 1 Set out serving dishes with serving utensils; label bowls and platters to indicate which foods go into which bowl or plate.
1 Assemble hors d’oeuvres or side dishes that can be made ahead of time.
1 Greet guests at the door, take their coats and handbags, direct them to the hors d’oeuvres and beverages, and introduce them to other guests.
[ 10 MIN. BEFORE SERVING DINNER ]
1 Turn on coffeepot for coffee with dessert. 1 Pour chilled water into water glasses. 1 Announce that dinner is ready to be served in 10 minutes. Checklist above excerpted from Which Fork Do I Use? Confident and Comfortable Dining by Rosemarie Burns and Linda Reed; Manners Simply, $24.95.
A lakeside home takes on a decidedly merry ski-lodge air as vintage sports gear, woodland forms, and wintry imagery brighten every room. Written by ANN WILSON | Photography by ADAM ALBRIGHT
Kelly Rinzema’s decorator’s eye, active imagination, and can-do spirit serve her well every day, but they become especially important at the holidays. Taking inspiration from flea market finds and her natural surroundings, Kelly creates captivating exhibits that celebrate old-fashioned pleasures in updated ways. When Kelly and her husband, Dan, built a lakefront home in Michigan, her artistic attributes became particularly valuable. During the building process, Kelly began sharing her DIY endeavors via a blog that she named after her home: The Lily Pad Cottage. Now that construction is complete, the Rinzema home—and the blog—often showcase Kelly’s festive finessing. “I love sharing the childhood magic I remember with my family,” Kelly says. “Our Christmas decorations are fun, classic, and homey; the kids are able to touch everything.”
24 Christmas Ideas 2016
FESTIVE SHAPES Kelly Rinzema dresses her mantel with an inexpensive garland that supplies a shapely foundation for wired-on white-painted branches, faux berries, fresh and faux greenery, and big lights. Red candlesticks and a stenciled quilt square tie the fireplace wall to ornaments on the nearby tree.
Most recently, after coming across vintage skis and snowshoes at a flea market, Kelly decided to create a whimsical ski-lodge Christmas. “I like to do something a little different every year,” she says. Though new ideas are always brewing, underlying elements remain the same from year to year to contribute familiar rhythms to the mix. “I gather materials and greens from the woods. I bring in unique things—like the sled on our front door.” Decorating the flocked tree is Kelly’s most-merry moment and by far her greatest challenge. Last year, the tree tumbled over multiple times as Kelly tried to wire a full-size pair of skis onto its boughs. “I have such a fun time doing the tree,” Kelly says. “I like to add large elements—like the skis—so the tree doesn’t look too busy.” The tree topper—most recently an assortment of faux berries and sticks wired to the top—changes each year. When it’s complete, Kelly says, “the house really feels like Christmas!” Throughout December, the home smells like Christmas, too, with the family decorating cookies, constructing gingerbread houses, and baking tree-shaped cinnamon rolls for Christmas breakfast. Old traditions endure while new traditions unfold—which makes for the happiest of holidays, Kelly says.
26 Christmas Ideas 2016
GRAND ENTRY The coolest trick? Kelly buys two imperfect trees, cuts off the branches to fill her window boxes, and then plops the tree tops in the planters flanking the walkway, above left.
SENTIMENTAL SYMBOLS Kelly updated her grandmother’s sideboard, above, with coats of red paint and moved it into her dining area. She made the sign from scrap boards held together with trim pieces nailed to the back of the boards. White paint and a red stenciled message convey a festive greeting.
MERRY MISSIVES After removing the glass from this picture frame, opposite, Kelly painted it red and sprayed the backing with chalkboard paint. “I bring that frame out for all types of occasions,” Kelly says. “I write ‘Happy Birthday’, jot down dinner party menus, and chalk on Christmas greetings.”
QUICK TIP Kelly frames a tea towel with stapledtogether scrap wood to create Christmas art in her kitchen.
28 Christmas Ideas 2016
“OUR GUESTS LOVE OUR HOLIDAY HOUSE, TOO. THEY ALWAYS SAY HOW COZY AND WARM IT FEELS.” ~ KELLY RINZEMA, HOMEOWNER
MAKING A SPLASH Inexpensive red plates add pizzazz to seasonal place settings, below. Kelly found the “nice” tags (printed with “naughty” on the flip side) at a local store and attached them to cording to form novel napkin rings.
SMART IDEAS A walnut range hood, opposite, built by Kelly’s uncle, showcases a beribboned wreath that hangs with florists wire from a hook screwed into the ceiling.
FAMILY TIES Kelly, Dan, Chloe, and Jack (and sometimes their dog, Charlie), above, gather around the dining table to decorate cookies and cupcakes. A primitive dough bowl holds pinecones, branches, and faux red berries, which Kelly values for their vibrant hue.
VIVACIOUS VIEWS Artificial wreaths are often mistaken for real—proving that selective shopping pays. Assorted red pillows with solid-color squares, snowflake patterns, and stripes partner with a “Merry Christmas” cushion to create a cheery composition. A wooden cement mold holds branches, ornaments, and greens atop a small table.
ALL IS CALM Branches and greens displayed in vases join with simple wreaths, above, in a nod to the season that doesnâ€™t disrupt the master bedroomâ€™s peaceful vibes.
ARTISTIC LICENSE During the rest of the year, this basket, right, acts as a frame of sorts for small artwork. At Christmas it exhibits cableknit stockings enhanced with branches and a ribbon.
RECREATIONAL INTEREST It makes sense to showcase winter sports gear at this lakeside home. In the mudroom, far right, a snowflake pillow and a mitten garland reference frosty-day amusements. For Sources, see page 120.
32 Christmas Ideas 2016
TOUCH Holiday paper crafts are playful, sophisticated, and totally doable thanks to a humble materials list: kraft paper and gold leaf.
Produced by DAVID STARK Written by BECKY MOLLENKAMP Photography by DAVID LAND/PAT BATES
Blossoms created from gold-leaf kraft paper are a holiday heavyweight. Snip a bunch of bloomers and attach to a fresh wreath, above and opposite. Glue others to gold-painted branches, page 39, or use them on gift boxes, homemade cards, and napkin ringsâ€”anything goes for this sparkling accessory!
Basic brown kraft paper is transformed when paired with simple, painted-on gold leaf. Leaf shapes cut from both plain and gold-leaf kraft paper gather along a length of rope to create a sumptuous garland that is at once sophisticated and warm, above.
TREE TOPPER Bold gold and minimal details keep this do-ityourself tree topper from looking fussy. Made from kraft paper decked in gold leaf, the project is as simple as cutting, folding, and gluing.
36 Christmas Ideas 2016
QUICK TIP Make your own gold-leaf kraft paper with the super simple instructions on page 40.
GIFT WRAP TASSELS Handmade paper tassels, above, add a playful touch to a traditional gift box wrapped in paper decorated with metallic paint pens or gold leaf. Once you’ve wrapped your gifts, put them on display. “Pile them up, put them in your vignettes,” designer David Stark says. “Let them be part of your holiday decor.”
STOCKING GIFT BAGS Simple stocking gift bags, right, are a fun alternative to gift wrap. Cut a pair of stocking shapes from kraft paper, then add stripes or a grid with a glue pen. Apply gold leaf over the glue. Then stitch or glue the front and back pieces together.
A LITTLE GLUE AND GOLD LEAF GIVE PROJECTS MADE FROM INEXPENSIVE BROWN KRAFT PAPER A GLAM, SOPHISTICATED FINISH.
PAPER PINECONES Handmade pinecones, above, are stunning holiday accessories thanks to easy-toapply gold leaf.
HOLLY TAGS A pair of holly leaf shapes—one cut from kraft paper, one from metallic paper—are festive drink or gift tags, right. Bells stand in for the holly berries.
PARTY CRACKERS Christmas crackers, opposite, are a British tradition. When pulled from the ends, the cracker makes a pop and candy falls out. The person holding the larger end gets the treats. Our versions are made from paper towel rolls and kraft paper.
38 Christmas Ideas 2016
CIRCLE GARLAND For this simple swag, use a 2-inch circle punch to cut metallic scrapbook paper and gold-leaf kraft paper. Fold eight circles in half to make one sphere, and glue the back side of one circle to the back side of another folded circle until the sphere is complete. Attached to ribbon, the finished spheres can be displayed on a mantel, sideboard, or banister.
FREE DOWNLOAD Download the patterns and complete how-to for all these decorations and more. BHG.com/CIGolden
MAKE THEM HAVE FUN CRAFTING SOME OR ALL OF THESE SIMPLE, SOPHISTICATED HOLIDAY DECORATIONS AT HOME. EACH ONE STARTS WITH A ROLL OF HUMBLE KRAFT PAPER.
GOLD-LEAF PAPER Here is David Stark's technique for making the partially gilded paper used in these projects.
MATERIALS Roll of kraft paper Crafts glue Two foam brushes Gold leaf sheets
DIRECTIONS Unroll a section of kraft paper on a flat surface. Brush on random, imperfect swaths of crafts glue with a foam brush. Do not coat entire surface with glue. Allow glue to set until tacky, then apply gold leaf sheets by gently rubbing in place with your finger. Remove gold leaf from unglued areas by gently dusting with the dry foam brush.
PAPER FLOWERS pages 34â€“35 MATERIALS Downloadable flower pattern Gold-leaf kraft paper Gold beads
DIRECTIONS Download the flower pattern at BHG.com/ CIGolden and cut flower shapes from gold-leaf kraft paper. Fold each in half along dotted lines as shown on pattern; unfold. Fold in half along other axis; unfold. Glue a bead in center.
40 Christmas Ideas 2016
GLITTERING GARLAND page 35
TREE TOPPER page 36
Downloadable leaf pattern Kraft paper, both plain and gold-leaf Metallic decorative paper 1-inch-thick rope Floral wire Christmas balls Bell ornaments
DIRECTIONS Download the leaf pattern at BHG.com/CIGolden. Trace and cut multiples of leaf pattern on all three kinds of paper. You will need about 50 cutouts for each foot of garland. Gently fold each leaf down the center. Apply glue to stems and adhere stems to rope in layers, working all the way around the rope. Hang the garland by draping it over nails or hooks attached to the wall or mantel. Use floral wire to attach balls and bell ornaments.
Downloadable tree topper pattern Gold-leaf kraft paper Paper Bone folder Dowel or heavy wire
DIRECTIONS Download the tree topper pattern at BHG.com/ CIGolden. Print and cut out both pages of pattern and tape together along sides labeled A. Trace pattern onto kraft paper and cut out. Repeat four times. Use crafts knife and ruler to lightly score along dotted lines. Use bone folder to fold along scored lines. Connect tab B to opposite side marked B using glue stick. Score and fold remaining four pieces of paper; glue tab B to side B on each. Once all five points of star are created, glue them together at tabs labeled C and D. Slip a dowel into bottom or glue a piece of wire at bottom to connect topper to your tree.
CIRCLE GARLAND page 39 MATERIALS Kraft paper, both plain and gold-leaf Metallic decorative paper 2-inch circle punch Bone folder Ribbon or string Beads
DIRECTIONS Punch or cut out eight 2-inch circles in a variety of papers for each sphere you plan to make. (It takes about five spheres to make a foot of garland.) Use bone folder to fold each circle in half. Glue back side of one folded circle to back side of another folded circle. Before you glue the last two circle backs together, glue ribbon or string to the fold. Then glue last two circle backs together. Tie a bead to the string before beginning to make next sphere.
PARTY CRACKERS page 39 MATERIALS Paper towel or toilet paper rolls Kraft paper, both plain and gold-leaf Cardstock Skewer Cracker snaps (available online) Ribbon or string Treats for inside crackers Decorative paper
DIRECTIONS Cut cardboard tube to 4 inches. Cut kraft paper to 7¹/₂×12 inches. Lay cardboard tube on paper with cracker snap parallel to it. Roll paper around tube and cracker snap and glue paper closed. Cut two pieces of cardstock to 2¹/₂×7 inches. Gently roll cardstock strips and slip into open ends of roll and secure with hot glue, making sure not to glue cracker snap. Gently pinch cracker at one end between tube and cardstock and tie with ribbon or string. Fill cracker with treats, then pinch and tie other side. Cut a 4×6-inch piece of decorative paper, wrap around cracker, and glue ends.
GIFT-WRAP TASSELS page 37
PAPER PINECONES page 38
Kraft paper, plain and gold-leaf Ribbon
DIRECTIONS Cut Âš/â‚‚-inch-wide strips of plain kraft paper into twelve 10-inch lengths. Lay strips in a starburst pattern, gluing each strip to the one on top of it. Let dry. Loosely bend bundle of strips in half to form a tassel. Glue a strip of gold-leaf kraft paper around the bundle 1 inch from top. For a hanger, slip ribbon through the opening below where the strips are folded over.
Downloadable pinecone pattern Gold-leaf kraft paper Bone folder Skewer
DIRECTIONS Download the pinecone pattern at BHG.com/ CIGolden; print and cut out patterns. Trace patterns onto kraft paper and cut out. Use bone folder to fold each piece so opposite petal points meet. Flip over and fold along all valleys (spaces between petals) to create an accordion fold. Unfold and stack pieces, largest to smallest. Run a skewer through centers and secure with a dab of glue. Trim excess skewer with scissors.
HOLLY LEAF pages 36 and 38 MATERIALS Downloadable holly leaf pattern Gold-leaf kraft paper Bone folder Ribbon Gold beads
ORNAMENT DIRECTIONS page 36
For Sources, see page 120.
Download the holly leaf pattern at BHG.com/CIGolden. Use pattern to cut eight holly leaves from kraft paper. Fold each in half lengthwise with bone folder. Glue one side of a folded leaf to one side of another. Repeat, stopping short of gluing first and last leaves together. Sandwich a loop of ribbon inside leaves and leave a 1-inch tail; glue first and last leaves. Tie a bead to each end of ribbon.
DRINK TAG DIRECTIONS page 38 Use pattern to cut two holly leaves, one from kraft and one from metallic paper. Fold each in half with bone folder. Punch a small hole in the top of each cutout, thread gold string through, and thread bells onto string.
42 Christmas Ideas 2016
Casual luxury and colorful accents define Kristin Cadwallader’s familyfocused holiday decor. Written by KELLY ROBERSON Photography by JAY WILDE
1 GO LUXE “I love luxury decor, but I also have two kids,” says Bliss at Home blogger Kristin Cadwallader. “I want my home to be hospitable and welcoming. I’m not worried if someone breaks something”— including one of these artful yet simple holiday ornaments, gathered in a tabletop tray. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 43
QUICK TIP Use ribbon by the yard to accent the drape of a greenery swag and tie a treetopping bow with long streamers.
2 PICK A PALETTE The Friday after Thanksgiving is decorating day, when Kristin flexes her Christmas style muscle. The family adorns fresh and faux trees, mantels, tabletops, and more. “When you design a space, there’s one thing—usually fabric or color—that you base the whole thing off of. For me, it’s different every year,” she says.
HAVE A MOMENT WITH A HUE Once Kristin picks a theme, consistency in color, material, and texture is key. This year, a navy, black, and white scheme provides the foundation while gold and silver metallics add the sparkle, above. “I thought it would be pretty,” she says. “But I was also having a pink moment and thought we could add that to really make it pop.”
4 THE FIRST NIGHT THE TREE IS UP, KRISTIN’S FAMILY HAS A SLUMBER PARTY UNDER ITS BRANCHES. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 45
5 FRESHEN UP Kristin relies on fresh greenery on her mantel and elsewhere in the house. To help maintain an always-fresh look, “I buy picks of fresh greenery and work those into faux garland,” she says. “As the fresh picks die, I pop them out and work in new bits for a realistic look.”
46 Christmas Ideas 2016
6 MIX YOUR METALLICS “I’m really big about mixing metals for a layered, collected feel,” Kristin says. She always uses mercury glass ornaments, left, as well as golds and silvers with different sheens. “Those are a good foundation,” she says. “You can throw any color or accent into that and it looks good.”
NURTURE YOUR NATURE Glass ball ornaments add sparkle, right, on topiaries, wreaths, and trays and under cloches. As Kristin was growing up, her parents—especially her mom— meticulously decorated for the holidays. “Maybe that’s where I get some of it from,” she says.
8 “A LOT OF TIMES I MAKE MY OWN WRAPPING PAPER TO MATCH THE LOOK I’M DOING ON THE TREE.” ~ KRISTIN CADWALLADER, HOMEOWNER
9 DECORATE WITH YOUR HEART “I always tell people to use what they love,” Kristin says of holiday touches on kitchen shelves, left. “Pick things that trigger happy memories. More than creating a beautiful space, it’s about surrounding yourself with things you love.”
TAKE YOUR TIME “The main spaces are decorated right away,” Kristin says, “but I continue to do things in the kids’ rooms or our bedroom,” such as hanging twinkle lights, right, here and there or adding small accent trees. “I don’t stress—I just enjoy it.”
11 HOME DECOR BUILT ON STRONG NEUTRALS—GRAY, WHITE, BLACK— ALLOWS FOR ADVENTUROUS ACCENT HUES AND BOLD PATTERNS. 48 Christmas Ideas 2016
12 BE INSPIRED Kristin is always on the lookout for holiday ideas from magazines, Pinterest, and blogs, be it months ahead or the day before she decorates. “I don’t always have a plan right away—it happens organically,” she says. For Sources, see page 120.
Use a tried-and-true hue in new ways this holiday by mastering the art of ombrÃ©.
Produced by LINDSAY BERGER Written by CATHY STILL MCGOWIN Photography by ADAM ALBRIGHT
WRAP IT UP
Whether your frames hold photography, oils, or your child’s art, a few rolls of wrapping paper and ribbon will give them a festive new look and create an impressive focal point on the mantel, opposite. Add even more cheer with a garland crafted from fresh greens and paper poinsettias. For instructions, see page 55.
Make a major statement with an ombré tannenbaum, above. This 9-foot stunner showcases nine gradations of red from tip to trunk. Glass ball ornaments and wired ribbons in varying sizes and sheens set the tree aglow. Where to start? Gather your ornaments in piles from lightest to darkest. You’ll need fewer at the top than the bottom. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 51
TONAL TAGS Label your packages with these ravishing-in-red gift tagsâ€”perfect for your under-tree scheme. BHG.com/CICoverTags
52 Christmas Ideas 2016
GROUND COVER Complete the ombrĂŠ look with packages wrapped in dark red shades, opposite, similar to the color of the ornaments near the base of the tree. Papers and bows in a variety of sheens and finishes add texture to the solid hues. Try contrasting glittery and satin ribbons with matte papers and shiny foils.
HAVE A BALL This DIY wreath, left, will last long past the holiday. To make it, choose a foam wreath form (any size) and boxes of ball ornaments (two finishes in similar shades). Wrap the form in ribbon that matches the ornaments. Pop the hanger off each ornament, apply hot glue, and press them onto the wreath form. To ensure the wreath hangs flat against your window, apply ornaments to the front and sides only.
FAUX REAL Trim your garland, tree, or stairway with these lifelike crepe paper poinsettias, below. Nestle these blossoms in bunches for greater impact or add a couple to a vase of greenery for a subtle accent. Either way, with little care, your forever flowers will still be in bloom next year. For instructions, see page 55.
TREE FORM Who says the tree gets to have all the fun? Dress your sideboard with a pair of DIY topiaries in ombré style. Similar to the wreath (page 53), choose a foam topiary form in the shape of a conifer, wrap it in ribbon (light to dark), and secure the balls, top to bottom, light to dark. For more holiday style, hang a mismatched collection of plates and platters in a Christmas tree design on the wall.
THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS THE PERFECT OMBRÉ. IT’S LIKE A WATERCOLOR PAINTING. YOU NEVER KNOW HOW IT’S GOING TO EVOLVE. 54 Christmas Ideas 2016
MAKE THEM HANDCRAFTED ACCESSORIES TINT YOUR HOLIDAY WITH OMBRÉ STYLE.
ORNAMENT ART page 51 MATERIALS Crafts knife Red mat board (2 pieces per frame) Strips of ribbon (use leftovers from wrapping) Spray adhesive Ornament template cut from download (we used two different ones) Gold-tone frame (11×14 inches shown)
POINSETTIA PETALS Use our free downloadable bract and leaf patterns to make your own paper poinsettias. BHG.com/CICoverGarland
DIRECTIONS Using a crafts knife or mat board cutter, cut mat boards to fit frame size (or purchase precut board). Using one board as the base, line up strips of ribbon in ombré gradation and cut strips to fit width of mat, if needed. Use spray adhesive to affix ribbon to the board. Place the ornament template from BHG .com/CICoverArt on the back of the second board to trace. Cut out the pattern using a crafts knife. Lay the clean side of the second board on top of the ribbon board to outline the strips of ribbon in the shape of an ornament. Frame the mats.
POINSETTIAS & GARLAND pages 50, 53 MATERIALS Roll of 19¹/₂-inch-wide heavyweight crepe paper (such as crepe paper rolls from cartefini.com): red and green, if desired 24-gauge cloth-covered florists wire: green Crafts glue Florists tape: green Artificial stamens Hot glue
DIRECTIONS FOR FLOWERS Download the bract and leaf patterns at BHG.com/CICoverGarland. Unroll crepe paper, noting direction of the ridges that run the length of the paper. Place a bract pattern on the crepe paper so a ridge runs through the center of the pattern; trace and cut out. Repeat with each pattern to cut two or three small bracts, two or three medium bracts, and five or six large bracts. If desired, cut two or three leaves from green crepe paper in the same manner. From florists wire, cut a 5-inch length for each small bract, a 6-inch length for each medium bract, and a 7-inch length for each large bract and each leaf. Run a line of crafts glue along the ridge on the back of a bract and adhere appropriate wire on the glue line, placing the wire end approximately ¹/₄ inch from the bract tip. Repeat for each bract and leaf. Let dry. Gently fold each bract and leaf in half along the wire with wrong sides together. Gently pull on the edges of each piece to create a slightly ruffled effect. Twist bottom edges around wire stems. To assemble the flower, gather the ends of small and medium bracts, then place large bracts behind the small and medium bracts; secure with florists tape. Add leaves behind the bracts and wrap tape around all wires. Add artificial stamens to the center of each flower and use hot glue to secure. Note: If flower becomes too top heavy, add a length of wire to the wire bundle for support. Cover with tape.
ART SILHOUETTES Download the shapely ornament silhouettes to create your own version of our ribbon art pieces. BHG.com/CICoverArt
DIRECTIONS FOR GARLAND To construct the garland, cut the wire stems on each flower to a 5-inch length. Weave the flower stems into a piece of ³/₈ -inch cording at evenly spaced intervals. Tuck the ends of 12-inch lengths of ribbon between each flower. Finish with assorted greens, stabilizing with hot glue if necessary. For Sources, see page 120. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 55
LIGHT & BRIGHT Although it is anchored by white sofas, the formal living room bursts with color. Apple green silk draperies frame windows and ribbon-embellished blue fabric dresses the ottoman and throw pillows. In keeping with the holiday color scheme, a garland filled with gold and white trimmings rests on the mantel.
Halls The bright, bold interior of a Virginia home becomes even livelier when draped in festive holiday trimmings. Produced by EILEEN DEYMIER Written by CATHY STILL MCGOWIN Photography by GORDON BEALL
Christmas comes early to Stephanie and Larry Stack’s house. “I like to start planning in summer,” Stephanie says. “It gives me time to think about all the wonderful colors that will give my house even more pop.” When visions of sugarplums start dancing in Stephanie’s head, she calls together her elves to spin their magic. “We love to decorate the front porch and every room in the house,” says Stephanie of her family’s 1936 Charleston-style home. “But it takes a lot of people to make that happen.” Stephanie infuses her home—from formal spaces to the rooms of her sons Leighton, 13, and Everett, 9—with lots of holiday cheer. “We’ve always dreamed of a house like this, and Christmas allows us to celebrate its grandeur. I love watching our boys tiptoe down the stairs Christmas morning to see what’s waiting for them.” To set the stage for the season, Stephanie takes a walk-through of the rooms with interior designer Kelley Proxmire and floral designer Rachel Gang of Helen Olivia Flowers in Alexandria, Virginia. “It can be so overwhelming, and it’s easy to get lost along the way,” Gang says. For the Stacks’ house, Gang took cues from the interior palette. Despite traditional architectural leanings, the BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 57
GLITTERING BAUBLES A wreath crafted from ornaments of varying sizes and finishesâ€” matte and shiny gold, white, and pearlâ€”adds even more glimmer to a formal gold mirror in the foyer.
home exhibits a fresh, lively interior. “The Stacks are such an energetic family. They are ‘Go! Go! Go!’ kind of people. The house needed to reflect that vitality,” Proxmire says. To that end, the designer splashed the rooms with an invigorating scheme that appears more summer than winter. While furnishings display classic lines, the upholstery, paint colors, and finishes are youthful and energetic—perfect for a family with two boys. “I love color and I love using it, but there has to be a flow,” Proxmire says. To ensure that continuity, Proxmire worked with four basic colors (chocolate brown, apple green, sea blue, and white) and combined them in different strengths and applications throughout the house. With so much visual stimulation, holiday decor had to be equally vibrant and cohesive. “I always advise clients to draw inspiration from the colors of the room,” Gang says. “If you have a yellow room, don’t fight it. Instead, come up with a fabulous citrus-themed Christmas and pull in hues of yellow, orange, and green.” For this holiday scheme, the designers focused on colors that would complement—not overwhelm—the interiors. They once again worked with four basic colors. “Everything we used is either white, gold, green, or natural materials,” Proxmire says. “I love layering, adding texture, and piling on an abundance of holiday decor,” Gang says. “I think Christmas is the one exception to the ‘less is more’ rule, but you always have to be careful to plan out a color palette that works with the existing wallpaper, paint colors, and fabric patterns.” Although Stephanie admits her holiday decorating is a big undertaking that requires a lot of people to pull together, she wouldn’t have it any other way. “We make ourselves wait until after Thanksgiving to decorate,” she says. “But once we are done giving thanks, it’s ‘Thank goodness it’s Christmas! Clear the dishes and let’s start decorating!’”
A settee in the entry hall, above left, introduces the vibrant apple green and sky blue colors used throughout the home. Wallpaper subtly underscores the green scheme. Garland tied with gold ribbon trims the stairwell banister for the holidays.
A wing chair in the living room, left, showcases a green-and-blue diamondpattern fabric—the impetus for the home’s color scheme. In the foyer, a swag of fresh greenery hangs from the overhead lantern for visual impact.
PLEASE BE SEATED Set for Christmas dinner, the Stacksâ€™ formal china reflects the color scheme used throughout the home: white, gold, and green.
60 Christmas Ideas 2016
FORMAL AFFAIR The formal dining room showcases a fireplace, French doors, and a crystal chandelier. Apple green walls set off dark, natural greens. Gold ribbon and ornaments atop the mantel echo the gleam of the gold mirror frame.
62 Christmas Ideas 2016
EVER GREEN Fresh wreaths and garland play to architectural details in the family room. A wreath nestles into a round cubby, garland is draped around the mirror and mantel, and a trio of wreaths is suspended by ribbon on each side of the fireplace. “Choose fresh greenery and a few main colors and your decor will look professionally done every time,” says floral designer Rachel Gang. “Use the same colors throughout the house—from wrapping paper to ornaments to ribbon—for a high-impact look.”
“I ALWAYS BELIEVE IT’S OK TO SPLURGE WHEN IT COMES TO GREENERY. PLUS, HALF THE FUN IS THE FRESH SCENT.” ~ RACHEL GANG, FLORAL DESIGNER
HOLIDAY FINERY The underlying theme for the Stacks’ holiday decor is “simple elegance,” Stephanie Stack says. “It’s the perfect combination of sparkly and natural.” A monogrammed tree skirt, right, lends a personal touch to this family-centered holiday. For Sources, see page 120.
64 Christmas Ideas 2016
CHRISTMAS CHEER A pair of mismatched chairs, left, flanks a console table with matching apple green lamps in the sunroom. The designers chose natural materials to set a casual tone in Larry Stack’s favorite room. A twig reindeer trophy is centered on a window. Wreaths encircle the bases of the lamps, and a French gathering basket holds a bevy of gifts.
DRESSED TO IMPRESS The Christmas tree in the family room, below, brims with baubles and ribbon. “We typically go ribbon crazy with our trees,” Gang says. “It’s not uncommon for us to use four or five types [of ribbon] and carefully weave them into the branches. We’ll use champagne, gold, and bronze all in the same tree. From afar they appear to be the same color, but up close, the tree has so much more visual interest.”
BEAUTIES Mother Natureâ€™s bounty and manufactured materials create statementmaking wreaths that stylishly endure. Produced and photographed by MATTHEW MEAD Written by ANN WILSON
AT FIRST BLUSH
Stage a seasonal surprise by presenting common Christmas colors in unexpected ways. Dusty-red leaves, dried dahlias, shiny berries, and lotus pods combine with sprigs of chartreuse greenery and yellow berries, opposite, to convert a traditional evergreen wreath into a luxurious and lively showstopper. Like the lush look? Save evergreen scraps from other projects to tuck around larger elements to bulk up the wreath’s edges.
Use assorted shades of green to breathe new life into an evergreen wreath. Spring green ivy stems—tucked into water-holding floral picks—partner with bluish eucalyptus leaves and variegated euonymus sprigs to fashion a sumptuous bed for red berries and pinecones, above. Daintier leaves and flower heads soften the outer edges while subtly expanding the wreath’s silhouette. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 67
PEARS ON PARADE
Create a wreath with multimonth interest by using dried materials or adornments that dry in an attractive way. A boxwood wreath, above, pays homage to both the harvest and holidays by showcasing vivid red berries, barley seed heads, and tufts of wheat arranged in symmetrical circles.
Blend rustic and refined details to craft wreaths that tell a story. Inspired by country French style, a striking hay-stacked circle, opposite, places faux pears firmly in the spotlight. Chartreuse berries, evergreen sprigs, and variegated leaves repeat the golden tones to compose a sun-splashed scene.
68 Christmas Ideas 2016
USE ARTIFICIAL WREATHS, FAUX BERRIES AND FOLIAGE, AND DRIED MATERIALS TO CREATE EVERLASTING DECORATIONS THAT YOU CAN SAFELY STORE AND DISPLAY YEAR AFTER YEAR.
Delight multiple senses by topping a straw wreath with an aromatic array of tantalizingly textured fresh herbs and zesty dried spices. Spice-swathed balls and cinnamon sticks emit intoxicating “something’s baking in the oven” scents, above, while quick-drying bundles of sage, rosemary, lamb’s-ears, and mint supply an everlasting foundation for woodland forms, such as reindeer moss, walnuts, and twiggy orbs.
Present time-honored ideas in novel ways. A plant that shouts “Christmas!” makes a splash with red poinsettia bracts mingling with piney stems and dried lemon leaves, opposite, to emphasize the geometry of an airy twiggy wreath. Keep your hot-glue gun handy as you layer on fresh and faux components. Adding dots of glue as you weave leaves, berries, and pinecones into the design ensures materials stay securely in place once the wreath is hung.
70 Christmas Ideas 2016
SELECT LEAFY STEMS, FRESH HERBS, AND EVERGREEN SPRIGS IN VARYING HUES, SHAPES, AND TEXTURES TO PILE ON PIZZAZZ.
GATHER FRUITS OF THE FIELD, FOREST, AND CRAFT STORE AISLES TO CREATE NATURALLY BEAUTIFUL DECORATIONS WITH STAYING POWER.
AT FIRST BLUSH
14-inch-diameter evergreen wreath form 3 red lotus pods 3 dried red dahlias Preserved burning bush leaf sprigs Pepper berry leaves Pepper berries Yellow berries Evergreen tips 1 cup fake snow Hot-glue gun and glue sticks
12-inch-diameter evergreen wreath form 20 medium pinecone floral picks High-bush cranberry clusters Variegated euonymus sprigs Seeded eucalyptus leaves Fresh ivy stems Floral water picks Hot-glue gun and glue sticks Floral wire (optional)
DIRECTIONS Position pairs of lotus pods and dahlias on the wreath and glue in place. Let dry. Tuck leaf sprigs, berry leaves, berries, and evergreen tips around the pods and flowers, gluing them in place as needed. Continue adding materials until the wreath looks pleasantly plush. Hang the wreath and dust it with fake snow. (Set a towel on the floor below the wreath to catch surplus flakes.)
72 Christmas Ideas 2016
12-inch-diameter boxwood wreath form Fresh or faux winterberry, marsh berry, or high-bush cranberry clusters 1 bundle dried barley 1 bundle dried wheat 1 cup fake snow Hot-glue gun and glue sticks
Insert and glue pinecone picks around the wreath’s inner and outer edges. Position and glue berry clusters, euonymus springs, and eucalyptus leaves across the face of the wreath. Continue adding leaves and berries until the wreath looks lush. Place fresh ivy sprigs into floral water picks; tuck the picks into the greenery or glue or wire in place. Keep the ivy fresh by refreshing the water every other day.
Glue berry clusters in a 2-inch-wide band around the center of the wreath. Glue barley stems around the wreath’s inner edge, layering the tips counterclockwise and facing the same direction. Glue wheat tips in the same fashion along the wreath’s outer edge. Let dry. Hang the wreath and dust it with fake snow. (Set a towel on the floor below the wreath to catch surplus flakes.)
PEARS ON PARADE
14-inch-diameter straw wreath form 2 pounds fresh hay U-shape floral pins 18—3-inch floral picks 18 artificial pears, in various sizes Chartreuse berries Yellow variegated euonymus stems Chartreuse cedar sprigs Hot-glue gun and glue sticks
DIRECTIONS Cover the wreath form with bunches of hay secured with U-shape floral pins. Glue a floral pick to each pear, holding the pieces together until the glue dries. Insert pear picks, alternating pears by size and direction. Secure picks with hot glue, if needed. Glue on berries, euonymus stems, and cedar sprigs.
8-inch-diameter straw wreath form 6 to 8 bunches of fresh sage, mint, lamb’s-ears, and rosemary U-shape floral pins 2—2-inch-diameter foam balls Brown spray paint Whole cloves and allspice berries White glue Ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves 2 floral picks Pinecone floral picks Reindeer moss, walnuts, twig balls, and 12 to 15 cinnamon sticks Hot-glue gun and glue sticks
DIRECTIONS Attach bunches of fresh herbs around the wreath with U-shape floral pins. Spray a foam ball with brown paint; let it dry. Push whole cloves into the painted foam ball. Glue berries to the cloves or directly on the painted ball. Roll the remaining foam ball in white glue and ground spices; let dry. Insert a floral pick dabbed with a drop of glue into each spice ball. Insert spice ball picks into the wreath. Add pinecone picks. Glue on reindeer moss, walnuts, twig balls, and cinnamon sticks.
8-inch-diameter twig wreath form Fresh Norfolk pine, blue spruce, cedar, and/or Scotch pine sprigs Lemon leaves Silica-dried red poinsettia leaves or artificial poinsettia leaves Pepper berries Pinecones Hot-glue gun and glue sticks
DIRECTIONS Glue evergreen sprigs to the wreath to create a lush foundation. Glue on (or tuck in) a ring of layered lemon leaves with all leaves facing the same direction. Arrange and glue preserved poinsettia leaves amid the lemon leaves. Glue on berries and pinecones to fill out the wreath.
Holiday Written by SARAH WOLF Photography by ANDREAS TRAUTTMANSDORFF
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a hand in the creation of your Christmas decor? This Ontario family is all hands on deck(orating) when it comes to Christmas.
Lucy Akins’ hands are always busy. The talented artist and mother of three seems to have a knack for transforming items most ordinary (yellowed pages of sheet music, an empty cereal box, or a skein of yarn) into the kind of eye-catching gems that make visitors stop in their tracks and ask, “Where did you get THAT?” The answer, quite often, is that Lucy made it—whether on her own; with the woodworking skills of her husband, Lee; or with the sometimes reluctant but always good-natured help of their children. “Decorating is just another way that I express my own art, my own creativity,” Lucy, who blogs at Craft Berry Bush, says. “And I make sure
WELCOME, CHRISTMAS From the very first glance of the Akinses’ Ontario house, two things are clear: Christmas is a major event, and the celebration extends to every part of the home. Round plastic ornaments and ribbons rev up leafy boughs around the door and on the railings with red, while plaid scarves in scarlet are looped through the wreaths on the doors.
that the tree always has handmade items on it, made either by the kids or myself.” In the family room, the Christmas tree is flecked with frost and laden with foresty figures, many of which started off as humble crafts supplies. But with a little (Akins child) labor, they turn into treasure: Nestled in the branches are yarnfeathered birds, etched wood ornaments, and white pom-pom garland, just to name a few. They all contribute to Lucy’s vision of changing their everyday family room into a snug little Canadian lodge perched high in the snowy mountains. Lucy often dreams up a theme for each year’s decorating, and she’ll carry it through the entire room. “I’ll picture myself in that place and then I’ll, say, take a virtual walk and see fallen trees and sprinkled snow,” Lucy explains of her process. Hence, fat birch branches overlaid with greenery splay on the family room mantel, a startled stag statue is caught mid-leap, and fuzzy plaid blankets and vintage books are scattered throughout the room (seen on pages 76–77). BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 75
76 Christmas Ideas 2016
LOVELY LODGE Meant to impart the coziness of a mountain lodge, the Akinses’ family room gets snuggly with lots of plaid. Blankets drape a wooden ladder that Lee built and packages get swaddled in patterned paper.
QUICK TIP Even prelit trees benefit from more white lights for the best “sparkling snow” effect.
The living room (seen on page 82), on the other hand, feels like an arctic blast blew through, fueled by Lucy’s vision of turning it into a frozen tundra. Rather than the family room’s cozy lodge, this room is meant to resemble the Age of Winter in C. S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia books: heavy drifts of snow on the tree, an icy forest looming behind the sofa, and chilly blue accents on ornaments and gift wrap. Again, family-made masterpieces abound: Lucy and the kids crafted the wintry tree tablescape out of old cereal boxes, white paint, hot glue, and glitter. “The trees took a little bit of time to make because we did so many, but they’re cute,” Lucy says. “It’s kind of a new take on those Christmas villages families often display.” And under the tree, handmade wrapping paper (screened with a dapper scarf-clad fawn that Lucy painted with watercolors) and brown-paper gift bags (which the kids pitched in to fold and paint to look like gingerbread houses) eagerly wait for Christmas morning. Decorating for the holidays is truly a family affair in the Akins household. “I love the idea of having handmade items,” Lucy says. “A home has to be filled with things that mean something to you, and I think homemade items and things that bring memories to mind are really important to surround yourself with.”
“ I USE THINGS THAT ARE NOT EXPENSIVE, BUT WHEN YOU PUT THEM TOGETHER, IT MAKES A BIG IMPACT. ” ~ LUCY AKINS, HOMEOWNER RUSTIC & REFINED This little sideboard—constructed by Lee—gathers everything one might need during a snowy stay at a cabin: lanterns (with LED lights rather than wicks and flames), a fur throw, and scads of old books.
78 Christmas Ideas 2016
CARDINAL RED Darling birds crafted from yarn, right, berries from a dollar store, gold glass pinecones, rolled-up pages of old sheet music, and plaid gift wrap make up some of the tree’s holiday gems.
WILDLIFE CROSSING This regal elk, above, lingers among the branches. Though it looks like a pricey piece, Lucy actually made it. She applied paint to a wooden ornament (purchased from a crafts store), printed an elk image that she found online onto transfer paper, then placed the image onto the wet paint. Once it was dry, “you rub off the paper with a little bit of water,” she explains. “They’re easy to make and they turned out cute.”
CREATIVE CREW The whole Akins family, right—Lee and Lucy; Ethan, 15; Tristan, 13; and Isabella, 11; with Brody, the Australian shepherd—contributes time and talents to decorating for Christmas.
80 Christmas Ideas 2016
QUICK TIP Lucy's charming gingerbread house gift bags are a practical, inexpensive, and easy way to share food gifts.
TOUCH OF BLUE
HOME SWEET HOME
Because the dining and living rooms are open to each other, they share the same icy, sparkly, lustrous theme. Real gingerbread houses dwell among vintage and new dishware stacked in the hutch, opposite, while gleaming glass cloches cover snacks on the table. “The cloches are both functional and add dimension,” Lucy says.
The idea for these gift bags, above, styled as gingerbread houses struck Lucy in the middle of the night (when most of her ideas are born). “I had a little brilliant moment,” she notes with a laugh. “They’re just paper bags whose top corners I folded back, then the kids and I put puffy paint on the fronts.”
SNOWBOUND HOLIDAY The living room, a more formal space, froze into twinkling tundra with Lucy’s imagination and skilled hands. “I was going for a snowy, frozen forest here—a very Narnia kind of thing,” she says. Hence, frosty trees sit on a console table behind the sofa, “snow” loads the Christmas tree, and glints of icy blues appear here and there. Lucy’s own artwork—a sweet fawn— appears on a throw pillow and on gift wrap.
IF YOUR ARTISTIC SKILL LEANS MORE TOWARD STICK FIGURES THAN WATERCOLORS, YOU STILL HAVE OPTIONS FOR CRAFTING ORNAMENTS, PILLOWS, AND GIFT BAGS. TRY YOUR HAND AT THESE IDEAS.
1. Favorite snapshots or old family photos make meaningful images to transfer onto fabric (for pillows, table runners, or wall hangings) or paper (for cards, gift tags, or gift wrap). Or download an image from a stock photo site.
2. Kids can turn an array of crayons and a roll of butcher paper or kraft paper into one-of-a-kind wrapping paper; they can also decorate plain gift bags with glitter, markers, and ribbon.
3. Personalize ornaments with a craft-store kit. Transfer copyright-free images onto wooden blanks for tree-hangers no one else will have.
4. Create just-for-you gift tags using your computer. Avery.com and papersource.com both provide online templates for their adhesive labels. Styles vary from simple to sophisticated.
5. Scour magazines, books, and blogs for ideas to craft your own ornaments, gift wrap, wreaths, and garlands. Lucy Akins’ blog, Craft Berry Bush, is a source of nearly endless inspiration.
6. Keep in mind: You don’t need to be a professional artist to add personal touches to Christmas decor. The Akins kids, after all, had a hand in several projects, such as cutting out leaf shapes for the tree tablescape in the living room, threading white pom-poms onto yarn for garland, and transferring images onto wooden ornaments.
SNOWY SCENE The whole family pitched in to craft this small forest of snow-sprayed evergreens, above. Lucy and the kids cut U-shape “leaves” from cereal boxes. Once the leaves were painted white, they were hot-glued to a stiff paper cone (another cereal box rolled and glued). “I love having handmade items,” Lucy says. “When people walk into the house and say, ‘Oh, where did you get those trees?’, I can say, ‘We made them!’ It’s not that I want praise—that’s just what makes home home.” For Sources, see page 120. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 83
BEYOND THE SPOOL Ribbons—in a variety of styles, widths, textures, and hues—are the material for easierthan-you-think, oh-wow holiday decor projects.
We’re taking ribbons beyond gift wrap to create showstopper decorations you’ll want to leave up long after the tree comes down. Projects by KIM HUTCHISON | Written by NATALIE DAYTON | Photography by ADAM ALBRIGHT
HAVE A BALL Trim your tree with these little jewel-tone beauties, or add one to the top of a gift as a keepsake.
⁄8 -inch raw silk 2- and 3-inch foam balls Hot-glue gun 5 ⁄8 -inch or narrower satin, velvet, or grosgrain ribbon
DIRECTIONS Wind raw silk ribbon around ball until covered; secure end with hot glue. Cut pieces of satin, velvet, or grosgrain ribbon long enough to go around ball—three pieces for 2-inch ball, two pieces for 3-inch ball. Wrap ribbons around ball at equal intervals, securing ends with hot glue at bottom. For tassel, cut and stack three 6-inch pieces of ribbon, knot in center, then glue to bottom of ball. For hanger, cut a 7-inch piece of ribbon, tuck under intersection of ribbons at top of ball, and knot ends.
MATERIALS 5 to 6 spools of 1-inch to 2-inch satin, raw silk, and grosgrain ribbon Fabric pen Thread Sewing needle Hot-glue gun Pressing cloth 18-inch wire wreath form
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DIRECTIONS Cut 20 to 24 strips of ribbon 36 inches long. Starting 1⁄2 inch from one end, measure and mark 1-inch intervals about 1⁄8 inch in from the edge of the ribbon. Thread needle and knot end, leaving a 2-inch tail. Feed needle up through one marked point and down through next. Repeat along length of ribbon. Pull thread to gather ribbon into accordion shape and knot thread. Glue ends of ribbon together. Press and twist with hand to form a rosette. Using a pressing cloth, iron flat. Repeat steps above with remaining ribbon. Hot-glue rosettes to wreath form.
SMOOTH AS VELVET
How about a little formal wear for your holiday table? A bow tie napkin ring dresses up things.
For napkin ring, cut a 3-inch piece of ribbon, form loop, and hot-glue ends together. For bow tie, cut 8 inches of ribbon, form loop, flatten, and hot-glue ends together. Cut a little more than 3Â inches of ribbon (to allow for slight overlap) for center of bow tie. Pinch flattened loop loosely in middle, wrap cut ribbon around it, and hot-glue ends together in back. Hot-glue bow tie to
MATERIALS 11â „2 -inch velvet ribbon Hot-glue gun
FINISHING TOUCH Give any item—the tree, a tabletop—a final flourish with a beautiful hand-tied bow, below.
⁄4 -inch satin ribbon ⁄4 -inch satin ribbon
DIRECTIONS Wrap ribbon around hand, forming 10 loops. Pinch together at center. Cut a notch through all layers at center on each side. Tie a piece of 1⁄4 -inch ribbon around center, slipping it into notches. Pull tight and knot. Fluff bow to finish.
CROWNING ACHIEVEMENT Contrasting ribbon colors and textures make this layered creation, above, extra-impressive.
MATERIALS 11⁄2 -inch turquoise velvet ribbon 11⁄2 -inch teal satin ribbon Cardstock similar in color to ribbons Peel-and-stick adhesive strips 11⁄2 -inch pink satin ribbon 11⁄2 -inch teal raw silk ribbon Pink twill tape
DIRECTIONS For bottom layer, cut seven 12-inch pieces each of velvet and teal satin, then cut seven pieces of cardstock the same width as the ribbon. Use adhesive strips to sandwich cardstock between one velvet and one satin ribbon, right sides of ribbons facing out. Repeat with remaining ribbon pairs. Bend a stiffened ribbon and glue ends. Repeat with remaining pieces. Cut a 5-inch cardstock circle. Arrange and layer loops as shown, gluing together and then to cardstock. For middle layer, repeat steps above using seven 9-inch strips each of pink satin and teal raw silk, gluing the new circle of ribbons to the bottom layer. For center bow, wrap a 24-inch length of twill tape around hand three times. Fan out loops and glue layers together in center. Repeat to make a second ribbon bundle. Wrap a short piece of twill tape around center of a bundle and glue ends. Stack bundles and glue together, then glue to middle layer. Punch small hole in cardstock circle and thread wire through to hang.
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A FIELD GUIDE TO THE MOST POPULAR VARIETIES
1. SATIN Smooth and shiny on one or both sides. Available in a zillion colors at any crafts or fabrics store.
2. RAW SILK Slightly slubby texture gives it a high-end look. Even more flexible than satin because it’s cut on the bias.
3. GROSGRAIN Parallel ridges give that characteristic body a crispness. Holds its shape well and is easy to work with.
4. TWILL TAPE Pliable and durable, tapes are used in sewing but can be used just like ribbon. The woven-in herringbone pattern is a style bonus.
5. VELVET Gorgeous texture and luster but can be pricey. Even a small amount adds a lot to a look. Available in regular or crushed, singleor double-face styles.
6. WIRE-EDGED Holds its shape without drooping, thanks to fine wire sewn into the sides. Perfect for bows on wreaths. For Sources, see page 120.
FREE DOWNLOAD Get card holder and package topper how-tos, plus all the instructions for these beribboned beauties. BHG.com/CIRibbon
Produced by STACY KUNSTEL Styling by KRISTINE KENNEDY Written by MOLLY REID SINNETT Photography by HELEN NORMAN Illustrations by ANN MACKEY-WEISS
An annual gathering inspires this Connecticut family to dress their historical home in holiday spirit and glimmer. Christmas at Marc and Michelle Morgan Harrison’s 1875 Victorian house in Connecticut is replete with traditions. Their annual Christmas party, an event started more than a decade ago, gathers nearly 75 people and provides the opportunity to show off Michelle’s thoughtful holiday decorating. “It’s very calming and serene,” Michelle says of her holiday decor. “It has a magical feel to it with all the sparkles and glitter and the shine.”
WARM WELCOME “I started having Christmas parties, and that was the instigator behind getting the house done for the holidays and elevating the decor,” says Michelle Morgan Harrison, who delights in adding to her display each year. As soon as Thanksgiving dishes are put away, natural evergreen wreaths appear in nearly every window of the historical home and greenery lines the grand porch. BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 91
SEEKING SANTA The Harrisons began hanging stockings from the staircase when they lived in a home without a fireplace. The tradition remains. Homemade felted wool stockings embellished with holly leaves hang with matching ribbon from balusters. 92 Christmas Ideas 2016
PETITE BUT POWERFUL The living room, left, isn’t big enough for a full-size fir tree, so Michelle relies on one of her favorite online finds to handle the heavy holiday lifting. Loaded with sparkling yet subdued ornaments, the tabletop tinsel tree adds vintage appeal.
SUBTLE SPARKLE Oodles of hand-tied ornaments dangle from the tinsel tree, below. Round ornaments in soft hues are the foundation for Michelle’s decor. Orbs in various sizes hang from trees, and rest in bowls. Ornaments in myriad greens, pale blues, and creamy whites join metallic highlights of both silver and gold. The palette fits seamlessly with Michelle’s extensive collections of jadeite and hobnail milk glass.
MICHELLE’S CHRISTMAS DECORATING SCHEME INCORPORATES NATURAL GREENS—FORCED BULBS, MINIATURE TREES, AND TOPIARIES—THAT LAST ALL SEASON AND BEYOND. THIS MODERN APPROACH TO ADDING HOLIDAY GREENERY IS SOPHISTICATED YET EASY.
QUICK TIP Position holiday accessories in front of a mirror to double their effect.
WRAPPED IN STYLE
A barely-there strip of organza runs the length of the dining room table, opposite, leaving the pine tabletop exposed. Evergreen boughs layered with vintage silver filled with delicate paperwhites and hypericum berries are a distinctive partner to heirloom china and crystal.
The dining room, above, offers the ideal nook for a grand Christmas tree. Packages wrapped in gold and champagne papers with bows in coordinating hues complement the tree decor. “Good wrapping paper can make or break a tree,” Michelle says. “Shopping early is the key.”
Collected serving pieces, above, of jadeite, hobnail milk glass, and other decorative wares inspire the holiday color palette. The expansive countertop handles kitchen overflow and provides the perfect place for a beverage bar.
Forced bulbs, right, add a taste of spring to the holiday spirit while keeping with the color palette. The silver ball wreath above the sink is one of Michelle’s favorite go-to items. “[It’s] great and works in any window,” she says. “You just put a different ribbon around it.” For Sources, see page 120.
“MY FAVORITE PART IS WHEN IT’S ALL COMPLETE—JUST BEING ABLE TO BE IN THE SPACE AND ENJOY IT.” ~ MICHELLE MORGAN HARRISON, HOMEOWNER
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GIVE YOUR HOLIDAY DECOR LIFE WITH THESE COLORFUL WINTER PLANTS.
1. Goldcrest Cypress These small feathery trees have goldengreen foliage that brightens a room. $29.95; fast-growing-trees.com
2. Dwarf Alberta Spruce The compact conelike shape of this â€˜Rainbows Endâ€™ miniature evergreen is ideal for draping beaded garland. $25; kiginursery.com
3. Colorado Spruce Evergreen Buy a small Charlie Brown Christmas seedling for the holidays and then plant this blue-hue evergreen in the yard. $8.98; homedepot.com
4. Red Star Dwarf White Cedar Petite at just 10 to 15 inches tall, these purple-hue evergreens are stiff but not sharp. $18; shop.miniaturegardenshoppe.com
5. Poinsettia Available in shades of red, green, and white, this bloom is a holiday favorite. $27.99; fromyouf lowers.com
6. Hyacinth Mix Bulbs have to be forced during the winter months, but these deep purple flowers will add unexpected color. $16.95; edenbrothers.com
7. Paperwhites These delicate white flowers are easy to grow indoors in soil, pebbles, or water. $17.99/10; brecks.com
8. Amaryllis Dramatic blooms sit atop the sturdy stems of these easy-growing bulbs. $9.95; easytogrowbulbs.com
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MERRY MEDALLION Resembling a major award, a drink coaster, above left, sports a merry motif and glittery ribbon tails and provides a prize-worthy profile atop a gift wrapped with simple white paper and gold-edged ribbon.
SEASONAL GREENS Organic references (linen paper, a berry pick, and cotton ribbon) complement a stamped-in-place holly sprig, left. Create a harmonizing gift tag by stamping on a message that expresses seasonal wishes.
SAVE SCRAPS OF GLITZY RIBBON AND METALLIC WRAPS TO CREATE LUXURIOUSLY LAYERED LOOKS.
RAZZLE-DAZZLE DELIGHT Accentuate a wood ornament’s curves with ribbon and washi tape, opposite. Tie the fancy revamped trimming onto ribbons that shine in black and gold. Finish the look with silvery leaves and a sparkly card.
A card-carrying, bow tiewearing penguin, above at left, cuts a mighty fine figure as it struts its way across a gift clad in embossed paper. Create your own scene using our downloadable penguin image at BHG.com/CIPenguin.
Metallic paper streamers bring “let’s party” spirit to a gift wrapped in textural striped paper, above at right. The streamers comprise a glittery ribbon-edged band and an easily pleated duo-tone rosette.
TRADITIONAL CHRISTMAS GREEN GOES MODERN IN NONTRADITIONAL SHADES LIKE MOSS AND OLIVE.
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Forget generic gift tags! Identify recipients with fabric-covered chipboard letters, above, that represent each personâ€™s initial. Use double-sided adhesive sheets to make myriad letters in minutes.
Let the revelry begin! Strings of paper garland prompt merrymaking, while jingle bells supply seasonal sound and sparkle to the package, opposite. Inexpensive gold curling ribbon delivers oodles of glitz for pennies.
BEADED SNOWFLAKE BAUBLE Two papers (one with snowlike paint spatters) and a hand-beaded trim, right, say you really care. Use like-colored wood and bone beads for an understated look or go bold with colorful metallic beads.
ALL THAT GLITTERS An hourglass shape formed from glitter paper triangles edged with green and gold washi tape, left, proves that all that glitters is truly gift-wrapping gold.
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QUICK TIP Recycle last year’s holiday greeting cards by using them to make colorful, creative gift tags.
Download our star template at BHG.com/CIStar and craft a galaxy’s worth of stellar shapes using thin sheets of wood and green felt. Add ribbons in varying shades of green to underscore the natural look, this photo at left.
Cardstock is topped with green leaf cutouts and beaded details then adhered to a gift, this photo at right, with gold foil washi tape, giving the gift box a beautifully crafted upgrade.
CULTIVATE GOOD CHEER A cylindrical wood box wrapped with an embossed paper panel, this photo at left, offers a textured backdrop where a flower (crafted from a paper fan) can blossom.
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AVIAN ARTISTRY A wooden bird adorned with red crafts paint fashions a finely feathered decoration, this photo at right, that practically chirps with natural appeal. A glittered twig perch adds bling. For Sources, see page 120.
MAKE THEM MATERIALS White wrapping paper with embossed pattern Chipboard cylindrical gift box Double-stick tape Dotted red washi tape 5- or 6-inch red honeycomb paper fan Mini wooden beads Quick-setting gel glue 2-inch-wide coral satin ribbon
GIVING A GIFT IS ONLY HALF THE FUN! RAMP UP THE HOLIDAY CHEER WITH CREATIVE, FESTIVE WRAPPING.
DIRECTIONS Wrap and center a panel of embossed paper around the cylinder box; tape in place. Trim the lower edge of the paper with red washi tape. To make flower, trim a honeycomb paper fan following the template, right; glue or tape edges to create circle. Fan out the shape to form a flower. Glue three wooden beads in the flower’s center. Let dry. Cut two coral ribbon tails, notching ends, and tape to the back of the poinsettia. Attach the poinsettia near the top of the cylinder with tape or glue.
Avian Artistry MATERIALS Acrylic crafts paint: red Small paintbrush Unfinished wooden bird Permanent black marker Glittered twig pick Quick-setting gel glue ⁵₈-inch-wide red cotton twill ribbon Oval chipboard box
DIRECTIONS Dilute a small amount of red paint with water to thin the paint to watercolor consistency. Apply two coats of paint to the bird, letting paint dry between coats. Color the bird’s beak black using the marker. Glue the bird to the top of a glittered twig. Let dry. Tie red ribbons around the box, finishing with a knotted bow. Tuck the twig beneath the bow; if needed, use tape to secure the twig to the package.
Have a Ball MATERIALS White wrapping paper 2-inch-wide coral satin ribbon ⁵₈ -inch-wide red velvet ribbon Double-stick tape 3-inch red honeycomb ball 2-inch red honeycomb ball 2-inch coral honeycomb ball Glue pen Medium and small sequins
DIRECTIONS Wrap a gift in white paper. Layer satin and velvet ribbons; wrap ribbons vertically around the package, taping ends to back. Tape strings attached to the honeycomb balls to the package. Wrap a piece of satin ribbon around the package horizontally and tie into a bow, covering the taped strings. Top horizontal coral ribbon with red ribbon; tape in place. Strategically space cascading sequins; glue in place.
Merry Medallion MATERIALS White wrapping paper ⁷₈ -inch-wide gold-edged peach satin ribbon ¹₄ -inch-wide gold glitter ribbon ⁵₈ -inch-wide red velvet ribbon Patterned drink coaster Double-stick tape
DIRECTIONS Wrap the gift in white paper and two perpendicular strips of peach ribbon. Cut peach, gold, and red ribbons into 2- to 3-inch lengths to create tails for the coaster; tape the tails to the back of the coaster. Use double-stick tape to adhere the coaster medallion to the package.
Seasonal Greens MATERIALS White linen tissue wrapping paper Ink pads: brownish-green and red Holly stamp “Happy Holidays” stamp Chipboard tag ⁵₈-inch medallion-printed red ribbon Double-stick tape Berry pick
DIRECTIONS Wrap gift in white linen paper. Stamp the holly design onto the gift wrap. Let ink dry. Use the “Happy Holidays” stamp and red ink to stamp a message onto the tag. Let ink dry. Wrap two ribbons around the package, taping to the back. Thread the tag onto a short piece of ribbon and tie the tag to the other ribbons. Tape a berry pick over the stamped design on package, tucking the stem beneath the ribbons.
DIRECTIONS Wrap gift in white paper. Wrap the duo-tone ribbon horizontally and vertically around the package, tying the ribbon into a bow with gold facing out on the bow tails. Decorate the ornament: Glue or tape a strip of ¹₄-inch black ribbon around the ornament’s center. Let dry. Center a piece of gold washi tape atop the ribbon. Tie the ornament to the bow with a strip of ¹₈ inch black ribbon. Tuck silver leaves into the bow; tape a gold foil card to the package.
DIRECTIONS Textural striped paper Double-stick tape 2 rolls gold metallic paper streamers ¹₄ -inch-wide silver glitter ribbon ¹₈ -inch-wide black satin ribbon 1 roll silver metallic paper streamers Quick-setting gel glue
DIRECTIONS Wrap a gift in white paper. Wrap a panel of striped paper around package, taping to back. Wrap a gold streamer strip around the center of the package, taping to back. Accent the streamer with glitter ribbon edging and a centered piece of black ribbon, wrapping and taping all ribbon ends to the back. To make the fanned rosette topper, create a ¹₄ -inch fold in one end of a gold streamer and use it as a guide as you make another 13 pleats; cut off this section of streamer (approximately 6 inches) and set aside. Pleat the remaining 6-inch piece of gold streamer. Repeat for the roll of silver streamers. You will have two sections of accordion-pleated gold streamers and two sections of accordion-pleated silver streamers. Glue streamer sections together, alternating colors, to form one long pleated strip. Glue the ends together to form a pleated circle. Bring the circle’s center together to form a rosette; secure the center with a dab of quick-setting gel glue. Hold the center with your fingertips for a few seconds until the glue dries. Glue a small knotted piece of black ribbon onto the center of the rosette. Attach the rosette to the package with tape or glue.
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Wrap present in white paper. Tie double-sided ribbon, with black side facing down, around the package. Knot the ribbon and notch the ends (the knot and tails will be black). Tape or glue a strip of gold glitter ribbon atop the double-sided ribbon. Download the penguin image from BHG.com/ CIPenguin and print on white cardstock. Cut out the penguin. Cut along the white line around the wing to create a tab to hold a gift card. Tuck the penguin under the ribbon so the knotted portion of the ribbon falls at the penguin’s neck like a bow tie. Use double-stick tape to secure the DAPPER DOWNLOAD penguin to the gift. Tape a gold gift card Use our dressed-to-the-nines in place under the wing.
embossed pattern 1¹₂ -inch-wide black/silver double-sided satin ribbon ¹₄ -inch-wide gold glitter ribbon Double-stick tape Quick-drying gel glue White cardstock Gold gift card
penguin image to give your packages a sophisticated, black-tie swagger. BHG.com/CIPenguin
Initial Here MATERIALS White wrapping paper 2-inch-wide brown satin ribbon ¹₄ -inch-wide silver ribbon Double-sided adhesive sheet Chipboard letter Green-striped fabric Quick-setting gel glue Sprigs of greenery Double-stick tape
make the initial, cut
top protective layer from the adhesive sheet. Lay the fabric piece, pattern side down, on your work surface. Place the letter, adhesive side down, on the fabric. Smooth with your fingers to adhere all layers. Trim excess paper and fabric. Glue greenery to the letter; attach letter to the package.
Joyful Noise MATERIALS White wrapping paper 2-inch-wide black satin ribbon Decorative paper-shape garland Double-stick tape Gold curling ribbon Jingle bell
DIRECTIONS Wrap the package in white paper and a vertically set black ribbon. Cut garland into lengths long enough to drape across the front of the package and wrap to the back. Set garland in place and tape the ends on the front and back of the package. Tie on another black ribbon, placing the bow so it hides the garland’s taped ends. Thread a piece of curling ribbon through the jingle bell and tie the bell onto the bow. Curl the ribbon ends using scissors.
Beaded Snowflake Bauble MATERIALS White wrapping paper Gold wrapping paper Acrylic crafts paint: white Toothbrush 1¹₂ -inch-wide moss green satin ribbon 4¹₂ -inch wire snowflake form Small round wooden and imitation bone beads Quick-setting gel glue Adhesive dots
DIRECTIONS Wrap gift in white paper. To make snow-dusted gold paper, set gold paper faceup on a flat surface. Dip a toothbrush into white paint diluted with water; run a finger across the bristles to spatter paint on paper. Let dry. Wrap the gold paper around the package, leaving a few inches of white paper showing at the top. Tie a moss green ribbon around the package where the two papers meet. Finish with a bow. To make a snowflake topper, string beads onto the wire snowflake form, working on one wire at a time. Apply glue to each wire end, push on the final bead, and hold it in place until the glue sets. Attach the snowflake to the bow using an adhesive dot.
All That Glitters MATERIALS White wrapping paper Scrap paper Glitter wrapping paper Double-stick tape Green washi tape Metallic gold washi tape ¹₂ -inch-wide gold-edged green satin ribbon Pinecone pick
DIRECTIONS Wrap the package in white paper. To make glitter paper triangles, cut a piece of scrap paper to the same size as the face of your package. Fold it diagonally from corner to corner in two directions to create an X in the center. Cut out the top triangle to use as a template for cutting two triangles from the glitter wrapping paper. Tape the glitter paper triangles to the front of the package using double-stick tape. Apply green washi tape along outer edges of triangles to reinforce the X-shape. Top the green tape with narrow strips of gold washi tape. Tie ribbon around package and insert pinecone pick into the bow.
Woodland Star MATERIALS White wrapping paper White wrapping paper with embossed pattern Double-stick tape ⁵₈ -inch-wide ivory/gold metallic ribbon ¹₂-inch-wide olive green satin ribbon Star template, below, or download from BHG.com/CIStar Wood veneer sheet with paper backing Scissors or crafts knife Green felt Quick-setting gel glue Glittered floral spray or pick
DIRECTIONS Wrap the gift in white paper. Center a panel of embossed paper on the package, taping to the back of the gift. Layer ivory/gold and olive green ribbon strips; wrap and tape ends of perpendicular pieces to back. Tape or glue a loosely tied ivory/gold ribbon bow on top of the ribbons. To make the star, copy and enlarge template, below, or download and print it from BHG.com/CIStar; cut out. Trace the template onto the back of the wood sheet and cut out. Set star on top of the felt. Glue in place, and trim excess felt. Glue small pieces of glittered floral stems at the top of the star. Tuck the star beneath the bow and tape in place.
Mistletoe Memo MATERIALS White wrapping paper Ivory crafts paper Leaf stamp Green ink pad White cardstock Quick-setting gel glue Miniature wood beads Gold foil washi tape ¹₂ -inch-wide gold-edged brown ribbon
DIRECTIONS Wrap the package in white paper. To make the leafed cardstock panel, stamp leaf shapes onto ivory paper; let dry. Cut out leaf shapes and lightly crease their centers. Arrange the leaves on a piece of cardstock cut to fit the front of the package; apply a line of glue along the crease on the back of each leaf and glue leaves to cardstock. Glue clusters of beads at bases of leaves. Attach the leafed cardstock to the package with strips of gold washi tape. Wrap ribbon around the package, tying it so the knot falls between the leafy sprigs.
ENLARGE 200% BHG.com/ChristmasIdeas2016 109
WARM WELCOME Holiday greenery makes a dramatic statement in the home’s entry, opposite. The year-round white backdrop means woodsy touches and natural pops of red stand out. A garden toadstool hints at the Scandinavian accents.
GOOD THINGS Louise Gore gathers ribbons throughout the year so her packages, above, are unique and festive each holiday season. A collection of tiny gifts decorates the entry table. Whether intended as gifts or just for display, packages dressed in coordinating papers are an ideal way to outfit any room in the house.
Tucked among the tall timber in Upstate New York is a home that belies its East Coast location—for the month of December, anyway. As quickly as the Thanksgiving decor can be shuffled into storage bins, the Gore family home transforms into a Christmas cottage nestled on a snowy mountainside in Norway, Sweden, or Denmark. Unpacking the family’s holiday decorations is a labor of love for Louise and Parker Gore and their 10-year-old daughter, Eleanor. Ornaments collected from family vacations mix with myriad red-and-white trinkets that would make any Scandinavian proud. “Over and over through my life, I keep gravitating to Scandinavian design,” says Louise, who proudly displays a colorful collection of Danish trays from the 1960s and ’70s in the kitchen year-round. But it’s
ACTIVE ART This homemade version of an Advent calendar, left, does double duty as art. Various containers filled with tiny trinkets hang with bakers twine from a birch branch. Mix in a few ornaments that can be moved to the main tree when the time comes.
TINY TREASURES A small, wooden tomte figure (also known as a nisse) sits atop a cheese plate, below left, providing another dose of red as well as a fun expression of the season. The tomte is one of the most familiar characters in Scandinavian folklore. Place cards are tucked beneath polka-dot toadstools (a common companion of the tomte) at each place setting.
the Christmas season that sends Louise’s Nordic spirit into high holiday drive. Powerfully simple touches of red fill the house. Popping off the home’s crisp, white walls are rich, green garlands dressed with red berries. The fresh greens welcome guests at the front door and continue through the entry and into the living space. The natural splashes of red peak in the living room. From the festive mirror leaning against the rugged fireplace to the fuzzy, striped stockings hanging below, red commands the room. Even the adjacent family tree is dressed in tradition-rich Scandinavian fare—Dala horses, straw snowflakes, and polka-dot toadstools among them. Anchored in simplicity, Scandinavian style insists on attention to detail, as does Louise. Look closely throughout her house and you’ll find treasures at every turn. Small handmade tomte figures (a Swedish version of Santa Claus) and a variety of toadstools (a common partner of the gnomelike tomte) join a scattering of delicately painted Dala horses in myriad sizes. Every room gets a touch of minimalist, yet traditional, holiday fare. The dining room is simple but elegant. Cherry red napkins introduce color to the table without stealing the spotlight from petite toadstools and tomte figures. “This is about as fancy as I get,” says Louise.
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SIMPLY STYLISH A casual setting of white glazed dishware atop a pine table speaks to Louiseâ€™s unfussy style. Even the chandelier overhead is strikingly simple. The redand-white scheme joins the ode to Scandinavian holiday style. Small topiaries on the buffet are quiet reminders of the season.
QUICK TIP Cut (or forced bulb) paperwhite blossoms make for a fragrant holiday display.
Small touches of red have big impact in the family room, opposite. Petite red shades transform fireplace sconces into Christmas showpieces. The mirror between them reflects the colors of the room while making a red statement of its own. The simple white mantel provides the ideal spot to hang matching stockings.
Dala horses, above, are scattered throughout the Goresâ€™ home and earn a prominent holiday position atop the mantel. The painted wooden horses have been an honored symbol of strength in Sweden since the 17th century, so they are a natural addition to any Scandinavian-inspired holiday. Grouping the small figures gives them more distinction.
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“ OVER AND OVER THROUGH MY LIFE, I KEEP GRAVITATING TO SCANDINAVIAN DESIGN.” ~ LOUISE GORE, HOMEOWNER
FRESH FANCY Tulips, opposite, are almost expected amid holiday touches in the Gores’ kitchen, even if they’re not a traditional American holiday flower. The blooms rest atop one of Louise’s coveted Danish trays.
RESTING PLACE The kitchen table and chairs, above, define Scandinavian simple but do it with über style. A red-and-white filigree pillow and cutout table decoration give a nod to the rest of the home’s holiday color scheme.
DANISH INSPIRATION A built-in plate rack, right, turns Louise’s collection of metal Danish trays from the 1960s and ’70s into a colorful display. She finds many of them online for as little as $12. Louise discovered her love for Scandinavian style at an early age, thanks to her family. “It’s the nostalgia—Marimekko prints from my elementary school years, my mom’s Norwegian Catherineholm bowls, and the Danish bracelet my grandma gave me,” she says.
6 7 TREE DECOR
where to buy
PERFECT TASTE Pages 18–23 For more information on dining etiquette, read Which Fork Do I Use? Confident and Comfortable Dining by Rosemary Burns and Linda Reed, Manners Simply; mannerssimply.com. WINTER WONDERS Pages 24–33 Visit homeowner Kelly Rinzema’s blog; thelilypadcottage.com. MIDAS TOUCH Pages 34–42 Design—David Stark, David Stark Design, Brooklyn; davidstarkdesign.com. Tree and garland ornaments, string lights—Jamali; jamaligarden.com. Gold ornaments—Christmas Central; christmascentral.com. Gold and copper papers— Paper Presentation; paperpresentation.com. Cracker snaps— Olde English Crackers; oldenglishcrackers.com. 12 WAYS TO DAZZLE Pages 43–49 Visit homeowner Kristin Cadwallader’s shop and blog; bliss-athome.com. COLOR SHIFT Pages 50–55 Tree 9-foot-tall, 52-inch Red Spruce Slim with clear Easy Plug lights, from the Vermont Signature collection—Balsam Hill; balsamhill.com. Ornaments—The Whitehurst Co.; thewhitehurstcompany.com. Ribbons—Paper Mart; papermart .com. Candlesticks—Kirklands; kirklands.com. TV Stand Buffet Crossville, from the Better Homes and Gardens® Collection— Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; walmart.com. Rug—Ethan Allen; ethanallen.com. DECKING THE HALLS Pages 56–65 Interior design—Kelley Proxmire, Kelley Interior Design Service, Inc., Bethesda, Maryland; 301/320-2109; kelleyinteriordesign.com. Floral arrangements—Rachel Gang, Helen Olivia Flowers, Alexandria, Virginia; 703/548-2848; helenoliviaflowers.com.
120 Christmas Ideas 2016
HANDMADE HOLIDAY Pages 74–83 Visit homeowner Lucy Akins’ store; society6.com /craftberrybush; and blog; craftberrybush.com. Deer pillow— Craftberry Bush; society6.com/craftberrybush. Fawn wrapping paper—available through Spoonflower; spoonflower.com. TIE ONE ON Pages 84–89 Styrofoam balls for ornaments—Michaels; michaels.com. Ribbons—Midori; midoriribbon.com; and Shindo; shindo.com. SPARKLE & SHINE Pages 90–97 Design—Michelle Morgan Harrison, Morgan Harrison Home, New Canaan, Connecticut; morganharrisonhome.com. Exterior balsam roping—Balsam Wreaths; balsamwreath.com. Christmas trees—Maple Row Farm; mrfarm.com. Wreaths— Stew Leonard’s; stewleonards.com. Moose and reindeer tree ornaments—Crate & Barrel; 800/967-6696; crateandbarrel.com. Christmas village pieces in dining room—Traditions Year-Round Holiday Store; christmastraditions.com. PUTTING ON THE RITZ Pages 98–109 All gift wraps and ribbon—Paper Mart; papermart.com, unless otherwise noted. Honeycomb balls—Sweet Lulu; shopsweetlulu .com. Stamps and ink Holly stamp 5527J, Happy Holidays stamp 1507D, Linear Leaf stamp 5429C, Fresh Ink pigment pads in Chocolate, Tomato Red, Tuscan Olive—Impress Cards + Crafts; impresscardsandcrafts.com. Chipboard gift tag, streamers Wrap Spritz streamers in gold and silver—Target; target.com. Ribbon Seasonal Greens—Fabric.com; fabric.com. Turned wood ornament, gold foil washi tape, red honeycomb paper fan, unfinished wood bird—Michaels; michaels.com. Wire snowflake form Darice—Create for Less; createforless.com. Wood sheet with paper backing Barc—Jo-Ann Stores; joann .com. Metallic ribbon—Fabric.Com; fabric.com. RED, WHITE & YULE Pages 110–119 Rosemary tree Let In The Light Rosemary Tree with Better Homes and Gardens® recipe cards—FTD; ftd.com. Tree 9-foot Addison spruce—Treetopia; treetopia.com. Red table cover Red Felt Tree Carpet Tomtes-Pixies 7112—Scandinavian Shoppe; scandinavianshoppe.com. Salt star ornaments Silent Night—Kristal Co.; kristalco.com. Felt Dala horses— WeeWoolyWhimsies by Carol Jensen; weewoolywhimsies.etsy .com. Ornament hooks 100 gold ornament hooks—Balsam Hill; balsamhill.com.
Christmas Ideas® (ISSN 0748-8106), 2016. Christmas Ideas is published annually in September by Meredith Corp., 1716 Locust St., Des Moines, IA 50309-3023. In Canada: Mailed under Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40069223. Canadian BN 12348 2887 RT. Better Homes and Gardens is a registered trademark in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Better Homes and Gardens marca registrada en México. © Meredith Corp. 2016. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A.
MERRY & BRIGHT Pages 14–17 Visit homeowner Stacy Blake’s blog; designaddictmom .blogspot.com. Paper village Christmas Street Advent Calendar—Mr Printables; mrprintables.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT LISTED SOURCES. MOST PRODUCTS SHOWN IN THIS ISSUE CAN BE OBTAINED LOCALLY. WE REGRET THAT WE CANNOT GUARANTEE AVAILABILITY OF ITEMS.
A SMILE STORY As a Christmastime volunteer with her community’s adopt-a-family program, Cynde Veale heard stories of families who didn’t have beds or bedding. Her response? She started purchasing pillows to donate. When she heard about the One Million Pillowcase Challenge, she knew participating would be the perfect fit. “These families do without so much,” she says. “I knew having a pillowcase made just for them would be something special.” Cynde started teaching others to sew pillowcases and last year her group of sewers made 63 pillowcases for families in need.
Smiles Guaranteed. For people who love to sew or quilt, it’s so easy to lift spirits and bring smiles to hospitalized kids, homeless families, and others in need during the holiday season. Simply join American Patchwork & Quilting® magazine’s 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge and make and donate one, two, or more pillowcases. You’ll create just as many smiles. Join the movement today. Find complete details, download free patterns, and be sure to record your donations online at:
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Christmas, decoration, holiday, baking, 2016