Thursday, December 7, 2017

Christmas Home Tour

I'm so excited to invite you all in for the Christmas tour of our little house in the mountains of Western North Carolina and thankful to Marty for inviting me again. She's the sweetest, and I'm honored to be part of this tour. 

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If you are coming over from Tidbits and Twine's beautiful tour, I welcome you here. 

First, for anyone new, a little background on our home.

We live in a newer house on property that has been in my family for five generations in the mountains of western North Carolina. 

This was my great grandfather's summer home away from the heat of Hypoluxo, Florida. Some of the original structures are still here and house lots of treasures from the past. When the original victorian farmhouse was torn down, my grandfather painstakingly bundled and stored all the doors, windows, trim, stair treads, tongue and groove boards, and more, which we have been slowly restoring and adding to our house.  Now when I refer to the "old house" you'll know what I'm talking about:-) Most of my furniture, art and accessories have also been passed down, and I have added to that with items from antique and thrift stores as well as our travels around the world. Every single thing means something, and that's what makes it *home* for me.

On to Christmas. I love Christmas and have fond memories of the most amazing Christmases here going between both sets of grandparents, and our home.  Snow, early country breakfasts in my grandparents' farmhouse, and lunch at my dad's parents are all romanticized in my head as I approach Christmas in my own house. 

I'm not sure we can ever recreate those precious memories, but we continue to build on them as our own families grow and make new memories every year. I can only hope my own kids will look back on Christmas here as I do on my own childhood. 

I have always loved vintage, things that are from my family or remind me of my childhood, and that is reflected in the things I choose. Lots of fresh greenery, Shiny Brite ornaments, things we've made and other special items are mixed with things from my travels and a new thing here and there. Enough, though, about my Christmas decorating philosophy and on to the tour.

Our house is super quirky, so there isn't really a "front door" -- that we use anyway. The entry also doubles as a music space and is home to whatever instruments we happen to have out as well as my piano and antique organ.

This antique Harden settle was in the old house then sold. A sweet neighbor gifted it back to me for my birthday and I couldn't love it more. Kilim and velvet pillows add texture and pattern along with a moroccan wedding blanket draped across the back. 

The antique pump organ was inherited, and the print was in the old house.  A Mason jar is filled with greenery from the property and accented with a tartan bow.

This rug. It was the first rug I bought in Turkey, and I got it back out this fall and love the rich colors, especially at Christmas. And who wouldn't love a sparkly, red guitar;-)

I dress the chandelier with greens as well and like to add wreaths on the inside as well as the outside windows.

I don't even have these ceramic trees plugged in but I love grouping them together every year in a new location -- this year on top of the piano. 

I found the sweet nativity in a box of Christmas things my grandmother had in her attic and treasure the sweet memories.

Also on the piano is a vintage Jens Quistgaard Dansk Star candle holder my uncle brought back from Germany to my mom in the 70s when he was in the Army. 

Our living space is next, and though small, is a cozy spot for Sunday afternoon naps.

Again, greenery and a few special items scattered about make the room feel Christmasy. 

My childhood record player takes centerstage with an old coffee can from my grandfather's store holding a Balsam seedling, a copper lamp my dad made, windows from the old house, and inherited Chinese ancestor prints.

I pulled the little Balsam tree from the property and it will go back in the ground after Christmas. 

I keep a pretty neutral palette (laughing hysterically now) with white furniture then layer on color and texture with kilim and velvet pillows as well as throws in different patterns and fabrics. 

I could buy out the Kilim Pillow Store and still not have enough of these covers. They are perfect for Christmas, and I love being able to get covers made from the same kilim.

This vintage church came broken after I ordered it from ebay. I glued it all back together because I loved it so much.

This tree candle holder was a purchase I made here about 15 years ago at a local shop I loved. Sadly, it went out of business.

An inherited Indian tea pot and my grandmother's Chinese tea cups are ready for Christmas tea, or in my case lots of coffee.  

The tree this year is a new one I found at Lowes on sale for $79. If you were here last year, you will remember how I loved the tree I bought from Grandin Road that looked like a vintage tree. Well, it really is too big for here, so I looked for something more slim and found this one that looks so very real. It's not the quirky shape of the last tree, but fits well in this spot. So you do not have to pay $400 for a really nice, real-looking tree.

This is the first pre-lit tree I have ever had, so, of course, I added some colored lights to the clear as I have done for years.

Vintage ornaments passed down as well as snowflakes my kids and husband made a few years ago adorn the tree along with tartan bows, tinsel and handblown glass ornaments I bought in Germany.

I always use plain brown paper, but found this plaid and vintage-inspired paper several years ago. I was happy to bring it out this year as it reminds me of the paper my mom always used. 

We had these angel ornaments when I was a child, and although my mother could not find hers, I found eight of these exact same ones on ebay. They are so sweet.

The chaise belonged to my great grandmother, and as impractical as it looks, we can all be found taking a snooze there or watching TV at some point.

Here are a few shots with lights...because I just like the insane challenge of shooting with different light sources:-)

The Turkish yahyali is what grounds this room so fabulously. I bought this one at Yellow Star Carpets on my third trip to Turkey to go with the one in the music room and love this beautiful wool piece of art. That was the inspiration for the color and pattern in this room.

Next up is the dining space, which features a table I made from wormy chestnut off one of the houses on the property. 

For Christmas I have centered everything around the yule log my dad made for my mom many years ago. 

The yule log sits on a chestnut board runner and is simply surrounded with greenery and faux sugared fruit ornaments. 

Mikasa Italian Countryside dinner plates act as chargers for the J & G Meakin Romantic England dinner plates and Johnson Brothers Old Britain Castles Christmas salad plates. Fostoria Argus iced tea glasses add green to the setting, and Wallace Louvre antique sterling flatware adds the bling.

New napkins from World Market keep the setting from looking too stuffy.

On the inherited buffet, is the Putz version I made of the old house my dad grew up in here. We all dream of living in that house and love having so many things in this house that came out of that one. 

The dining table is grounded by a cream overdyed rug from Unique Rug Store and layered with an Afghan Kazak rug from ecarpetgallery on ebay. 

I've been layering rugs ever since I saw the Saudi Arabian team at an Air Force competition doing it in their hospitality tent at an event. I thought it was brilliant and have loved the look for years. 

And now on to the kitchen, which is where most of the action happens around here:-)
 I just want this room to be cheery and fun so I've layered greenery with seasonal towels and a few Christmas items from my childhood.

I love this vintage Blue Ridge Stanhome Ivy dinnerware and discovered it looked really festive when paired with the Chinese cream and sugar bowl that belonged to my grandmother. 

My grandmother's Holt Howard candy Cane and the spaghetti angel candle holders always get a spot in the kitchen windowsill.

On the open shelves, I mixed Romantic England and Old Britain Castles with the Chinese tea set, Mason's Vista red transferware and an old Blue Ridge platter.

The little santa and sleigh and the angel were also in my grandmother's Christmas box.

And this tree:-) This is a Christmas tree to me. I dug up this hemlock from the woods and strung popcorn, added my great grandmother's glass beads, ornaments, and snow flakes and fans I made from old sheet music. I found the clip-on candle holders in my mother's Christmas boxes but don't remember her using them.

If only the LED lights didn't have a nuclear-bright glow.

And yes there is artwork my kids made on the fridge because I love seeing it there every year. 

On the island, which I desperately want to take apart and reconfigure, is another little hemlock tree with cinnamon gingerbread ornaments my kids made in preschool.

This candlestick sat on the mantel in the old house.

Y'all I did not have time to make any kind of cookies so I hit the Walmart Bakery, and these found their way into my cart. 

The kids love hot chocolate at Christmas so it's ready for them to grab.

Last on the tour is the master bedroom. Honestly, this room is so colorful and cozy I could have left off any Christmas decor and called it good, but that would not be the real me.

This bright and bold antique rug from Vintage Pillow Store is the inspiration for this room, and I needed something that could stand up to the 1970's curtains my mom gave me. 

As you can see I added more color and pattern with the plaid bed skirt and flannel duvet cover.

The iron bed was here on the property and I restored it a few years ago.

A quilt my great grandmother made is draped across my grandmother's trunk.

This is such a cozy room to be in at night and our kids love to hang out in here and do homework. 

On the other side is the mantel I made from a door out of the old house.

Above is a colorful Moroccan mirror and an iron candelabra I bought at a Pier 1 about 20 years ago. 

Greenery from the yard and my Cherokee corn bead necklace drape across the top, and fur stockings are hung waiting for Santa.

And that's the master bedroom except for one last thing. 

As a child I remember my maternal grandmother having a manger she had made with a tin foil star. I mentioned it in a facebook post about farmhouse style, and my aunt, who had the nativity, saw the post and brought it to me to borrow for this season. Oh my goodness, I. Was. In. Tears. You can't buy this kind of memory at any store. 

Y'all this right here is what Christmas is about. I could stop now and write nothing else because this one thing wraps it all up in one neat, little gift.

This reminder of my childhood and my grandparents, who I miss so much, tells the story of Christmas with no pretense. And that is why I'm so happy to have it displayed here where I can see it and be reminded of exactly why we are celebrating this holiday called Christmas.  

Nothing else really matters but that one gift of hope and peace from a humble stable in Bethlehem.

I'm so glad you stopped by here and hope that you have a blessed and joyous Christmas. 

Thanks to sweet Marty for including me on this tour, and be sure to stop by House by Hoff next to see April's tour. 

If you missed any of these tours, you can go start at the beginning and see them all. Such wonderful Christmas inspiration from all of them!

I'll be joining:
Wow us Wednesdays
Feathered Nest Friday

Monday – Dec. 4th
A Stroll Thru Life - Marty 
Life On Virginia Street - Sarah
Clean & Scentsible - Jenn
Nesting With Grace - Brooke
Cuckoo4Design - Julia
Pink Peppermint Design - Tammy

Tuesday – Dec. 5th
ZDesign At Home - Bree 
 Life Love Larson - Andrea  
Dimples & Tangles - Jennifer 
Remodelando La Casa - Cristina 
Seeking Lavender Lane - Deb 
Inspiration For Moms - Laura  

Wednesday – Dec. 6th
The Chronicles of Home - Jennifer 
Our Southern Home - Christy 
Decor To Adore - Laura
11 Magnolia Lane -Christy
Our Fifth House - Carmel 
Rain On A Tin Roof - Jenna  

Thursday – Dec. 7th
Setting For 4 - Heather
Life & Home @ 2102 - Vel 
Southern Hospitality - Rhoda
Decorating Delirium - Jennifer 
Hymns & Verses - Doreen
Simple Stylings - Summer

Fri – Dec. 8th
Thrifty & Chic - Alicia
Tidbits & Twine  - Kim 
Far Above Rubies - Anita 
House By Hoff - April 
Duke Manor Farms - Laura 
Common Ground - Debra 


  1. I love love your style & especially that you cherish family treasures! I get tired of seeing all these white contemporary homes in magazines. Seasons Greeting from Canada.

    1. Oh thank you so much for that:-) I try to forge my own path for sure and do something different.

  • Marty@A Stroll Thru LifeDecember 8, 2017 at 5:55 AM

    Anita, I love your home and look forward each tour to see all of your family treasures and how you display them. Your cherished memories of your Childhood Christmases remind me of my own. I love then tensil nativity at the end of your post, I remember seeing one years ago, so a special treasure. Thanks so much for joining the tours, your home is so full of love and family, it always inspires me.

    1. Marty thank you so much for those sweet words and for inviting me on this special tour:-)