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Thursday, Apr. 17, 2014

Bring the great outdoors inside this holiday

Thursday, December 13, 2012

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Christmas décor doesn't have to be all glitter and glass globes. Some of the best decorations come from items found in nature. Bring a touch of the outdoors inside when the holidays come around.

There's no better time than December to pull out all the stops with fresh floral arrangements, especially when they are placed in interesting containers and heirlooms you already own.

ANEMONES: Tie them in a bunch to create a topiary. Line three or five down the center of a table.

AMARYLLIS: Display in full bloom, cut short, and mass in low arrangements. Or dress them up in their pots by replacing their support stick with a graceful twig or tying a branch of holly berries to the stem with raffia.

FRUITS: Line vases with smaller fruits, such as kumquats or cranberries. To do this, take two different-size vases of the same shape, and place the smaller one inside the larger; fill the space between them with a single type of fruit. Fill the inside vase with water, and add flowers.

WHOLE NUTS: Scatter them on the table under and around a textural, earthy arrangement. To fashion a swag for a mantel from whole walnuts, cover chicken wire with fabric, and then hot-glue the nuts to that form. The garland will be heavy, so be sure you have a way to secure it before you spend the time making it.

Cutting amaryllis in peppermint stripes is a fun way to add some holiday cheer and the arrangement will last for up to a week. Tall vases of white and silver balls mixed with pinecones can stay up well after Christmas is over.

Christmas tree

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Remember the cranberry-and-popcorn garlands of the past? Bring back those edible ornaments with a twist. Cranberries can be threaded onto thin wire, then looped into a small circle to form a miniature wreath. Add a raffia bow and hang them on your tree for a festive pop of color.

Slices of dried oranges hung by ribbons not only bring color to your tree, but smell amazing.

Some of you may remember making these and other homemade ornaments for your tree as a child. (The Master Gardeners tree at Sorghum Valley) was decorated with ornaments made from nature alone. Pinecones were sprayed red, white and glittered. Magnolia pods were sprayed with glitter and wreaths were made from cranberries and sprayed to keep birds from eating them. Snowmen were made from clay pots and painted white, magnolia leaves and dogwood branches sprayed red or gold, dried hydranges, and other nature items complete this nature wonder of a Christmas tree.

Outdoors

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* Take a Bough - Use cut branches and artfully arrange them in outside containers, making stunning displays all through the winter.

* Decorate with lights - Dress it up with festive "evening wear". Ribbons shimmer in the glow cast by braiding several light strands with bulbs of various colors and sizes. Place in the bottom of the container.

You can also just fill up a large pot with soil and lay lights on top (even last year's tangled ones), then insert branches and dried weeds from the wild. Another idea is to use pinecones, bright-red inexpensive tree ornaments and greenery to fill clay pots of different sizes.

If you have benches or chairs, decorate with greenery and red mesh bows for a festive look.

Decorating the table

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To decorate your table, use a burlap table runner which will provide a nature background for a centerpiece, candleholders and placecard settings. Use cranberries or walnuts as filler for small vases, then top with a votive candle. Scatter pinecones of various sizes on the runner or use some as placecard holders by simply hot gluing name cards to the front. Apples -- red or green -- look festive in a bowl when mixed with chestnuts and pinecones. The trick with natural décor is to dress it up a bit, but not too much.

Stairs and railings

If you have a staircase with a banister, gather bunches of greenery from the tree, branches of holly or eucalyptus and tie them to alternating balusters to create a visual pathway up the stairs. Bunches of greenery tied with ribbon are also a festive addition to the guest bathroom, wrapped around towels or hung from the shower curtain rod.

Every spot in your house that has a touch of natural décor ties in beautifully with your tree and table, to bring a natural touch of the holidays to every room.


Comments
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Very nice article with useful tips.

-- Posted by realworld on Fri, Dec 14, 2012, at 6:20 PM


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