Our Hostesses!
House #3 - Susan:
Susan is a mother to 5 children, now all young adults.
 Santa was the theme at Susan's house. Santa heads, to be more specific.
Susan started collecting them about 28 years ago
and now has a grand total of 50 smiling Santa Claus faces.
Most of the faces were small and adorned wreaths, a twig tree and garland,
but there were a couple of amazing larger Santas as well.
This one looks to be carved of wood and fills the wall near the front door.
Another large Santa head with an extra long flowing beard. One of Susan's wreaths adorned with jolly Santa heads.
Rounding the corner I was pleased to find this portrait of Susan's five children, now all grown. She actually commissioned this from me several years ago. When I drew it, I used photos she had of the children all at similar ages. It was the first time I had seen it framed and was pleased to discover it is one of her most prized possessions.

Susan decorates her home each year in much the same way,
and enjoys the familiarity of her family treasures.

A Steinbach nutcracker collection of 5, one for each of her children, sit cheerfully in a bookcase.
Susan's family Christmas stockings were all hand-knit by her sister-in-law. Each new child born in the family receives a hand made stocking from Aunt Melinda. To date, she has made over 40!

Susan's grand staircase is bedecked with garland, lights, poinsettias,
ribbon and the smiling faces of Santa.

Susan's festive outdoor decorations.
Thank you, Susan for sharing your cheerful home with us!

House #4 - Mattie
Mattie is mom to 4 and grandmother to 2.
 Her busy household is often filled with the smell of delicious food, as cooking is one of her hobbies and part of her generous italian heritage. Mattie had some lovely decorations, but needed a theme to pull it all together. We purchased just a few things - garland, ribbon and some sparkly twigs - and used what she already had.

Our defining theme began with the poinsettias she loves and a vibrant red throughout.
I created the wreaths, (two identical wreaths for her double front doors) using new ribbon and green wreaths and silk poinsettias she already owned.

We added Christmas touches to her entry table.
Also in the entry, we added garland to the top of her curio cabinet. 

I used green garland on Mattie's grand staircase, with a glittery green wired ribbon and red silk poinsettias. The look was simple and elegant - just like Mattie.

The family trimmed the tree in Mattie's favorite blown glass ornaments. We added ribbon and glittery ice twigs for sparkle.
We placed the family nativity set in the formal living room and made it the centerpiece and focal point of the room.

Mattie's dining room needed a punch of red on her side table. She had two amaryllis stalks and a pretty urn. Using a 'found' candle wreath, I was able to create a floral arrangement.
Framed Christmas cards and family photos complete the vignette.

A garland on her chandelier and greens in a lovely italian pottery vase were all that was needed to bring beauty to her table in the formal dining room.
We brightened her cozy kitchen with red placemats and a centerpiece of bright beaded garland and ornaments in apothecary jars. We topped it off with a berry garland on the chandelier.

A cluster of nutcrackers is nestled atop an armoire with garland and glittery fabric.

The family room's natural focal point was the inviting fireplace. I hung a berry wreath over the mirror and added green garland and lights to the mantle. The centerpiece of the mantle was created with a metal tray and three red candles. We added a touch of the italian with faux sugared fruit on the tray and on the green garland.

Just a few more touches - a framed favorite Christmas card, candle and pop of red floral - are all that is needed to complete the decor.
Mattie - we appreciate your hospitality and thank you for participating in our tour.


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