Friday, 15 November 2013

Designs on Decorating

Thank you to all of the people so worried that I wasn't getting my decorating gloves (?) on and attacking the task with my usual gusto.
Actually no one seemed that worried about whether I put the tree up on the 1st of November or the 15th... so I went with the 10th which felt like a good half way point between getting in early at the start of the month and missing my mental deadline of middle of the month.

If you want to get in to the whole thing slowly, that's absolutely fine.

Here's my quick list of things you can do, slowly, to you know, start setting the scene (previous lists included other options, take your pick!)
  • Mercury Glass
  • Reindeers
  • Candles
  • F O O D


mercury glass:
We're not talking expensive pieces. Obviously if money was no object I would have one of these on every table:


Mercury Glass Hobnail Task Table Lamp from Pottery Barn

Mercury Glass has a real sparkly vintage antiquey feel. It adds a whole new gleaming dimension to vases, lamps, candle holders, jars and bottles. It really shines on beautiful Christmas ornaments. Best described as mottled silver. It emulates the way old mirrors get a warped and wavy look and it is a bit addictive really.

Doesn't this convince you?

http://stunningpicz.blogspot.com.au/2013/10/mercury-glass.html
I recently found these tea light jars for only $4 each at The Reject Shop They come in silver, pink or blue or there is another hobnail style one, slightly smaller, for only $3 each.
What's stopping you?


CRAFTER ALERT: After a bit of googling I found that it is possible, and in fact perhaps even easy to do a bit of mercury glassing yourself. The product is available in Australia and is called Krylon Looking Glass spray paint. It's $20 per can (+ postage). I haven't tried it - if I did I would definitely blog about it as the results could be quite entertaining... In the meantime, check out these great efforts on the blog: what maddy did next.

REINDEERS:

Reindeers come in to their own at Christmas time. It's worth trying to think how you can integrate them in to your every day life. Perhaps people above the equator keep them as pets and ride them to work? Not so easy for us down south. Still, the possibilities are fairly endless when looking at the fake, furry and foam varieties...

Here's one I picked up for a friend last year in a local department store. By the time I realised how great it was and had run back to buy one for myself, they were all gone. (And no, I haven't found one similar. Anywhere. Sob.)Here it is in her gorgeous home. Fiona says it has been hanging up there all year, and seems happy whatever the season. I can only agree.


I found these cute fuzzy ones on Pinterest via Tumblr. I like the idea of them grazing amongst other sparkly objects.
Parental Warning: Keep your nerf-toting kids away - target practise can be too tempting.

www.pinterest.com 
And I was very happy to find Archie this great tee-shirt for the Christmas season. A silver foil reindeer with red antlers. Why don't they make this sort of thing in adult sizes??


CaNdLeS:

There are so many types of candles, ways to display them and scents to discover. Some of the snazzy brands bring out Christmas scents each year.  Some are better than others and the more expensive ones are not always the best. It really comes down to personal choice.

I quite like the Christmas range by Circa Home. Nice classic packaging and not overpriced either. Red Spiced Pear is a warm and sweet (without being sickly) scent that will have you feeling Christmassy in a flash.


Some of the real cheaper options I like include the Ikea scented tea lights. At $5 for a pack of 36, you can pop them in every glass and jar you can lay your hands on. I've also picked up quite a few of the Betty Crocker Gingerbread candles and Cinnamon Bun Candles. They're made in the USA and are around $3 each in chemists.

I'm loving Woodwick at the moment - yes a wooden wick that crackles like a campfire as it burns. I'm enjoying Pumpkin Butter, but am soon to move on to Campfire Marshmallow and Vanilla Bourbon. Woo hoo!


If the whole decorating thing leaves you feeling a little tired, faint and woozy, you're obviously not getting enough pre-Christmas sustenance!
 
F O O D!
 
Last year I got terribly excited by the amazing Heston Blumenthal mince pies with the pine sugar dusting (honestly, the man appears to have melted down a pine tree and left us with the sweet  powdery remains - heaven). In Australia, Coles Supermarkets stock the UK's Waitrose produced Heston brand of Christmas fare. This year we have the pies and a number of fabulous pudding options. They are reasonably priced and make great gifts too, if you don't eat them first.


And if Heston doesn't fill you with longing, you can always head to Woolworths for a piece of Jamie. Or maybe even better still support a charity through buying a pudding - or go to a farmer's market.
Aldi has fantastic glazed German gingerbread cookies and a great assortment of other German and European treats. I can vouch for their sugared almonds. I won't be buying them again however. Too tempting.
 
And tomorrow I plan on trying this year's Christmas themed Maple Latte at Gloria Jean's. My all time favourite from a few years ago was the gingerbread latte from Starbucks. Alas Starbucks are a rarity in Sydney these days.
 
https://www.facebook.com/gloriajeanscoffees

Then there was the flavoured roasted coffee I bought in bulk one year in the post-Christmas sales. We so overdosed on this cognac inspired Christmas pudding flavoured beverage, that we still can make ourselves feel sick just by mentioning it.

Yep. Feeling sick again.
(There's still a few boxes in the top of my pantry if anyone wants one!)
 
So what is your favourite way of getting in to the yule-tide mood?
Or are you still in denial?

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