Kodachrome Christmas


I love that the act of Christmas decorating is sort of a design unifier. It doesn't matter if you're the Martha of your friend group or have no clue about Pantone and how it's been predicting your color preferences since forever. Everyone joins in on this one. Year after year those dusty boxes of stored ornaments and half-working strands of lights are dutifully (hopefully dotingly too) carried upstairs and devotedly dangled and restrung - unpacking memories, traditions, and a delight in participating in the thrill and excitement of the season. 


Every year my Christmas S– P – I – R – I – T seems to radically increase. I figure I've got to maximize this Just The Two Of Us time and full-on embrace my crazy color-loving, anti-minimalist, whimsical fancies through our Christmas decor. Soon enough I'll be fretting over fragility and practicality or solely focused on memory-making, right? So I was jazzed to once again feature my pink thrift store secured christmas tree! This time, though, I wanted to create a slightly different theme. Last year was all kinds of glitzy and glamorous and even a tad opulent with layers of draped fuchsia paper fringed garlands and big bulb lights dripping from the ceiling. To change things up I thought I'd try infusing some natural and rustic elements, but still, you know, with a lot of pink – less saccharine, more Paul Simon, Andy Warhol, and urban. Oh yeah, I also vowed to spend no money on decorations so the end result is basically the product of whatever I could find on site.          

I feel like such a grown-up driving home from work and catching that first glimpse of my pink beacon gleaming beyond its bay window enthronement. My wildest dreams came true when the secondary sofa previously occupying the space got the boot. 


The ornaments are primarily just your standard multi-colored bulbs of the glitter variety (a set I bought a couple years back from Target), with the addition of those three oversized glitter glamazon bulbs I picked up at a thrift store last year. I wish I had more, but I just tried to spread them out evenly so it looked intentional. It felt a little flat with just those so I added in some gold geometric ornaments I acquired after cutting apart a few hanging straw himmelis I had on hand from a previous window display at work. The tree topper was my attempt to incorporate that natural element I mentioned earlier. I just screwed some scrap pieces of wood in the shape of a star for that homemade vibe. The verdict's still out on that one.

I've been wrapping presents in a hybrid of fabric and brown postal paper for a while now. It's an easy way to achieve a layered pattern, texture, and color look without having to spend a ton buying several different wrapping papers. Bonus! People feel bad about just throwing it away so I typically leave with the same scraps I started with. Less wasteful that way. 


The other side of the room got some Christmas cheer too. This is my mantel – aka a shelf I built above our tv. But at some point there was a fireplace here because behind that seemingly normal plaster is a brick wall precluding me from hanging anything without the use of a masonry bit and a lot of preparation. Thus, any art or decor I place up there has to be free standing.


At Christmastime I love the simplicity of a classic wreath above a fireplace, but again, I didn't want to spend any money on decorations this year. I contemplated a couple ways of making a large wreath with on-hand materials plus attempting to securely attach it via ribbon to the ceiling molding. Then I remembered the unused sheet of plywood loitering upstairs and decided to use it as the backdrop for a perfectly imperfect stenciled wreath.

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My Thanksgiving candle centerpiece got more air time too! And of course it wouldn't be Christmas at my house without streamers and garland – though paper chains seem more primitive and in keeping with my theme than previous years' more glamorous iterations. I'm super into this color palate of warm copper, various wood tones, blush, and metallics. It all looks so soft, juxtaposed with the gritty stenciled wreath. 


You saw a bit of the dining room decked for Friendsmas, but here's the everyday look. I snagged a bolt of red buffalo plaid wool fabric (is there any fabric more Christmassy than red buffalo plaid?) at an estate sale a while back and used it for a table runner. A strip of extra pink ribbon from the wreath is placed down the center. To introduce that punchy color from the living room clear vases and an amber colored dish corral all the colorful non glittery ornaments that didn't make it on the tree. Simple white tapers accompany the brass section candle holders. And a red vase filled with evergreen sprigs snipped from my backyard rounds out the collection. Skully even donned the requisite cold weather paraphernalia for obvious reasons.    


Our very first Christmas tree, a little white four-footer, got tucked in the corner for some extra ambiance (and a veiled Neil Diamond-esque Brother Love's tribute).    


I like getting the hutch involved in the festivities too. It is a bit like a mantel in some ways. This version is lots of gold and pink, some red, and more pops of color from ornaments. My boss gave me that dreamy Hazel-Atlas Ice Bucket and those vintage cocktail tumblers last year for Christmas. Insane!  


And that's it! This year's bright and colorful Kodachrome Christmas. May your joy and celebration be equally bright and colorful this season.