Holiday Decor, home, Random

Keeping It Simple

I like the holidays as much as anyone, but for the last several years I’ve enjoyed keeping the associated decor simple. From my still sizeable array of Christmas goodies, something different is brought out each year, and I delight in choosing what to feature. This time the focus is on nativities which are among my favorite things.

Our mantel is barely more than an architectural detail, but it proved to be just right for arranging a good part of the collection.

As each one went to its place, I took a moment to recall its story.

In the days when I participated in holiday shows I always had my eye open for a new nativity to add to a growing collection so many of them came from other vendors.

I particularly liked finding sets from another country that likely had been handmade.

This was the very first nativity I bought so it is years old. I laughed at the chewed wooden legs remembering our first dog. What a character he was and he left behind much evidence of his presence!

Flat surfaces are not abundant in our house, but there are enough to have a nativity on every one.

As each one came out of its box, I began to see a common thread.

Most are handmade and tend toward folk art.

The last to find a place is my favorite. I found these pieces a couple of years ago when we took a boat trip from Maine to Nova Scotia. I was blown away by their detail and the wonderful use of color. No matter where or how the set is displayed, it tells a wonderful story and I am so grateful to the hands that created it.

So there you have most of my holiday decorating and by keeping it simple, each and every one of these nativities invites a look.

I so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind

Home Decor

A Peek Inside

From the minute you enter this home, you know that it’s going to be special.

The walls are neutral backdrops for a world of color gathered in Mexico, Cuba and New Mexico.

No piece appears by accident as I happen to know how much thought has been given to each one.

There are interesting collections throughout,

 all of which have their special place.  Thinking ahead about how to display eliminates the potential for clutter.

Color abounds lending its own energy to every space, 

but it is not used carelessly as the same colors repeat themselves in different ways throughout the house.

There is much to  catch the eye be it the accessories 

or the upholstery fabrics that blend effortlessly into their surroundings.

It goes without saying that the folks who live here are comfortable with color and texture and have used both to their best advantage.  There is something to be said about knowing your style and carrying it off successfully.

i so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind

 

 

at home, Home Decor, Maine

A Peek Inside

Maine homes are as diverse as the people who live in them, and I am enthralled by each one I’m lucky to experience.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHow could one not be comfortable here where casual is so inviting?

At every turn is a vignette which to my eye invites being captured on canvas.  Since I’m not adept at painting, using a camera will have to do.

The house is full of items collected here and there, and I’m betting there’s a story behind each,

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including how this guy came to find his place.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe kitchen with its organized clutter is so inviting

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand I can only guess at the stories that have been shared around this table about life in Maine.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAYes, I love these peeks inside that give insight to people and suggest so many ways of living.  There’s more to come.

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at home, Maine

The Return

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Returning to Rockport, my initial urge is to get everything perfect, so armed with cleaning stuffs I begin the process of getting all things in order.

porchCrazy as it might seem, I begin outside where winter weather takes a toll.  Tarps have to be removed from furniture and porches scrubbed clean.  

IMG_6591That done all things have to be put in their place and pots that have stayed inside all winter are reintroduced to the sun.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThen it’s to the inside where the first thing that catches my eye is a tabletop that I can’t bear to leave bare

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand a cabinet surface in need of a little dressing up.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA few favorite things that make their own statement took care of that in a minute.

Maine houseMoving on to the living room, it took only a glance to suggest that it was time to change rich toned slipcovers

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAto  lighter ones more suitable for the season ahead.  That is not as easy as it sounds as it requires a lot of pulling and tugging.  On a roll now, I decided to move furniture 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand accessories around for a new look.  Talk about an easy way to redecorate!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s amazing how such simple changes can give an entirely different energy to a room.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWith outside and inside in pretty good shape, bathing Miss Daisy was the next order of business.  She likes being clean, too!

Next up will be the yard, but that will have to wait for another day.  For now, I’m calling it a day and heading for bed!

i so appreciate your visit and especially the comments you leave behind

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Random

Fall Tweaking

Maine houseSince we are in Maine from May to November and our winter visits are short, not too much generally happens here in the way of seasonal decorating.  This year, however, I was so impressed by all the fall changes I’ve seen on blogs, Pinterest and in magazines I decided to make a few here.

Maine houseChange began by removing summer slipcovers and revealing the autumn  colors hidden beneath.

Maine houseInstantly, the room seemed warmer, and it would have been OK to stop right there, but no, I got the bug.

Maine houseThe coffee table has a new vignette that uses some of my favorite things in a different way.

Maine houseOn a roll now, I made a quick trip to TJ Maxx, confident of finding some new happy. I was not disappointed!  I found a cozy new throw that will knock the chill off as I sit by the fire in the mornings and read your blogs and emails.  I was delighted to find that it has contrasting sides which suits my fancy for texture.

Maine houseNew pillows for the chairs were a bonus find

Maine houseas was a garland of fall leaves that I hoped would work above the fireplace.

Maine houseUnlike many of you, I have no mantle, and the narrow stone ledge is an almost impossible decorating challenge. The garland works though it was kinda tricky getting it to stay in place.  If you look closely, you’ll see a few leaves tucked up under the edge of the frame.

Maine houseExcept for moving a piece of furniture or two, that’s the extent of my fall tweaking, but it made such a difference even the hubby noticed it!

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Decorating, Home Decor

Simple Decorating Tips for Fall

With its warm colors, fall is a season that delights the senses and with a few simple changes its warmth can be felt in every nook and cranny.

Pumpkins and Gourds

pumpkinsPumpkins, real or not,

gourdsand gourds are favorite accessories that come in all the right colors and add interest any where they are used.

Candles

fall decor/candlesWhat could be simpler than candles?  They are a most inexpensive way of adding seasonal color and their night time glow adds a touch of romance.

Pillows and Throws

fall decorThrow pillows in fall colors easily change the look of a room

fall decorand nothing beats a cuddly throw for a chilly morning read by the fire.

Flowers

fall decor/flowersCostco, Trader Joe’s and the grocery store are full of affordable fall blooms.

fall decor/flowersPut them everywhere and be energized by their beauty.

Porches and Doors

Maine house/diy/fall decorOh, last but not least, remember to announce fall at your entrance.  Nothing is more welcoming to visitors or passersby.

i so enjoy your visit and the comments you leave behind

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Decorating

Changing Things Around

Houston living room
Before

Wouldn’t it be nice if every time we got a little tired of our surroundings we could just start over?  Well, I don’t know how it is for you, but for me that’s not a likely possibility.  Over the years, however, I’ve found it very easy to create new looks by changing things around.

Houston houseChange in the living room was accidental and began with these chairs that were in the breakfast room.  They are quite comfortable, but they have been replaced by a higher backed chair that is a little better suited to reading or watching TV.  Destination for the old ones was Craig’s List, but take a look.  

Houston houseThe upholstery repeats the colors in the rug and the pattern adds a spark of interest to the solids of the other furniture.  Certainly, that means they are worth keeping and I don’t really want to get rid of them.

Houston houseThe chairs would have been change enough, but once I got started rearranging I found it impossible not to move everything around.  The Philippe Stark piano chairs from the 70’s moved across the room,

Houston house and side tables were swapped or added from another room.

Houston houseMany accessories also found new spots.

Houston houseAbout the only thing that didn’t move was the painting which is perfect just where it is.

After
After

The message here?  When you want change, shop your house.  It is surprising what a fresh look can be created by rearranging.  If I were going to add something new, however, I’d look right here.

i so appreciate your visit and the comments you leave behind

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