Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Winter Ilex Berry With Fantail Pussy Willow

We have often wished for the temperate climate of California with the bounty of gorgeous local flowers that seem to proliferate everywhere you look. Then again, we have certain times of the year that we are ecstatic over the wonderful flora we can find right here in the Midwest. December is one of those months where our cups--or vases--runneth over with intriguing specimens like fantail pussy willow and robust branches of winter ilex berries, otherwise known as holly berry. Our local growers deliver these right to our door and we love the way they spark every arrangement where they make an appearance.

Fantail pussy willows are dry and look lovely for as long as you might care to have them around. Ilex berries prefer cool temperatures and will last for weeks if they're watered from time to time and not overheated.  Nestled in evergeens, magnolia leaves, and pinecones, the berries just sing!

When the season is over, set the berries in your yard as a gift to the birds who love them almost as much as we do.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Holiday Tables

Holiday table with red Amaryllis, dried Lotus pods, Magnolia leaves and green Trachillium

Garnier Thiebault linen napkins
Intimate dinner parties, family gatherings, a feast with friends, and grand celebrations fill the season. We wanted to share a few of our holiday inspired tables with you. Incredible scarlet amaryllis are bold and elegant in a simple basket collared by Lotus pods and Trachillium. Large Magnolia leaves scale up any arrangement with rich green leathery leaves lined with soft amber undersides. Hand written place cards are nested in a miniature mossy terrarium and votive candles glow surrounded by pieces of sea glass.

Vintage table with  centerpiece of Eucharis lilies, Ornithoglium, and Amaryllis in Milk Glass

For a more casual inventive table, vintage containers from you grandmother's cupboard make delightful vessels for fresh flowers and vintage ornaments. We used white Ornithoglium, Eucharis lilies from Holland, red Amaryllis, and sprays of evergreen in a Milk Glass compote. Then we set it atop a pie crust-edged Milk Glass cake plate.

Vintage Bakelite flatware with contemporary Eigen Arts chargers

Bakelite flatware with contemporary Eigen Arts ceramic chargers topped by red and white decal plates make charming place settings. A 1950's Army Navy linen cloth is accented by a homemade red cloth with fat rick rack trim. Browse in the family cupboards of china and linens, then have a little fun with it!