Home for the Holidays: Rustic Christmas Tree

Welcome to the Home for the Holidays Christmas Tree Challenge with Decorator’s Warehouse. I am so excited to share this year’s elegant, rustic christmas tree with y’all!

Decorator’s Warehouse challenged 12 talented home decor bloggers to design a Christmas tree exclusively with decorations from the store. If you have ever shopped online or visited Decorator’s Warehouse in Arlington, Texas, then you know that the hardest part is choosing just one theme or color scheme. Consequently, there are so many different styles of Christmas decor from rustic to whimsical and elegant which can be found in a variety of trendy, traditional, or neutral color palettes.

Use code CUTERTUDOR for 10% off everything at Decorator’s Warehouse except Christmas trees and resin.

Rustic Christmas Tree

My decorating style is a combination of rustic and casual elegant design. For example, rustic feels distressed, aged or natural. Similarly, materials that exude a rustic feel include burlap, jute, weathered metal or raw wood. It may appear in farmhouse or coastal style homes. As far as the elegant side of the design, I incorporate a little sparkle into my home during the holidays. For instance, think velvet ribbon, glittered balls or stems and twinkle lights. However, I always want my home to feel relaxed and welcoming.

When decorating my home, I I love the look of neutral colors, such as beige, white and grey. In addition, I always gravitate towards cool colors like blue and green. This color combination feels very calming and approachable.

Consequently, my style has not changed from last season. I still love blue mixed with neutrals and creating a rustic elegant vibe that reflects my coastal style. Plus, bells are one of my favorite things to add into my holiday decor. Specifically, I used the large rustic jingle bells on my tree and mantle last year. You can find my previously decorated tree and Tips to Decorate a Christmas Tree, here.

I found these natural fiber deer and pair of trees in Decorator’s Warehouse.

How to Decorate a Rustic Christmas Tree

Basically, there are three things that I incorporate into decorating a tree: floral picks/stems, ornaments and ribbon. However, I used a variety of each to showcase different textures, colors and contrast.

Assuming your tree is pre-lit like mine, the first step is to fluff the branches of the tree. For example, make sure you touch every branch, pulling each towards you and spreading it out to fill in any gaps.

Start with the Spray Topper

Secondly, decorate the top of the tree with a ‘spray topper.’ A spray topper is an assortment of different artificial floral sprays and seasonal stems grouped into a bouquet on top of the tree. In addition, florals, bows, bells or seasonal elements can be added near the base of the topper. For this tree, I push frosted branches, pine and berry style sprays down the top center of the tree, as close to the pole as I can. Next, I add floral sprays in clusters. Lastly, I hang a set of three white washed bells off to one side. These bells have a round circle which I pushed through the tip of a branch before bending upward to secure.

For 9+ foot trees, I remove the top section, place it in a bucket, decorate it using tie-wraps to secure before returning it to the tree. Since, this tree isn’t too tall, I just used my step ladder.

Bells are one of my favorite things to decorate with during the holidays. I have collected many different styles and sizes of bells over the years. However, this set of white washed bells is a recent find from Decorator’s Warehouse. I knew when I saw them that I had to have them. They are so versatile to decorate with. For instance, I hung these on the top and side of the tree. Then, tied a pair on the garland hung on the fireplace mantle. However, they would look great hung on the stairwell or front door or sitting on the coffee or dining table for a unique centerpiece.

Weave Ribbon into the Tree

I prefer to use three different kinds of ribbon with at least one having a bold pattern or texture. For instance, I chose two shades of blue velvet ribbon in two different widths, but added the birch bark ribbon for contrast. Plus, it added another natural element to this rustic Christmas tree.

Wired ribbon is the easiest to work with. It allows you to ‘pop’ the loops out to create more depth. Plus, it can be rolled up and used year after year. Another key factor to working with ribbon is to cut it into controllable increments. For instance, most of the ribbon on my tree is cut between 2-4 feet long. I highly recommend viewing Decorator’s Warehouse tutorials on YouTube for excellent step by step directions to add ribbon to the tree.

Basically, ribbon is added with a series of loops and tails. To create ‘tails’, cut the end at an angle. However, I prefer a ‘dovetail’ by folding the ends in half and cutting a diagonal from the center to the outer edge. To create loops, leave a tail, twist ribbon to create an 8 inch loop to ensure the top of the ribbon always shows. Then, repeat to create either another loop or tail. Simply twist ribbon between the tree branches to secure.

These table top pine trees in galvanized pots look so real. When tied with velvet ribbon, they are a perfect mix of rustic and elegant.

Fill with Floral Clusters and Filler Sprays

Floral clusters are a bouquet of floral, textured, and leaf style ‘sprays’ or stems. These are the basic elements when creating a floral arrangement, as well. Decorator’s Warehouse has a beautiful selection of Christmas flowers in an assortment of materials, colors, patterns and sizes. I chose the grey sugar poinsettia, burlap faux fur edge poinsettia and a green velvet poinsettia with glitter detail.

For winter, artificial ‘leaf’ stems may be cedar, spruce or pine needles and frosted or snow covered branches. Textured stems are usually three dimensional and may include those with faux berries, pinecones, glittered balls or ornamental details. You can shop for both, here.

Therefore, layer at least 3-5 different sprays, including at least one floral, textured and leafy stem. For instance, place a poinsettia over a dewberry pick, frosted branch and pine spray. Then, hold in one hand and with the other, grab the end of one of the more flexible stems, and twist the bunch together. This will allow you to easily push the floral cluster along a branch on the Christmas tree while securing with a tree branch. Make at least one floral cluster per foot of tree.

Lastly, set aside about one dozen each of 3-4 different kind of sprays, as well. These individual sprays will be the last thing that you add to the tree. Basically, these are used to fill in any empty spaces and repeat color and pattern throughout the tree.

Add an Assortment of Ornaments

For a 7. 5 foot tree, Decorator’s Warehouse recommends to use 6 different styles of 5 balls. Then, add 12 different styles of three specialty ornaments. However, this is just a recommendation and you should always decorate in a way that you love.

When choosing ornaments, be sure to consider a variety of different finishes, colors, textures, and sizes. For example, select matte, shiny, natural, glittered, rough, smooth, detailed, big and small. If you enjoy a monochromatic color scheme, simply choose different shades of one color. If you prefer modern look, lean towards smoother textures and cleaner lines, but choose matte and shiny metallic finishes.

Therefore, I chose four unique styles of balls and hung a cluster of smaller decorative ornaments together. For instance, I placed the brown shatterproof balls deep into the tree and the show stopper 6″ blue glitter balls front and center for sparkle. For a touch of rustic, I love the flocked snow twig ball and birch ball ornaments. Find the ornaments, here, and shatterproof balls, here.

Decorate beyond the tree.

Continuing the same elements in the room is great way to make a room feel cohesive with the holiday decor. Last year, I styled a nine foot Belgium pine garland on my fireplace mantle. I loved it so much that I decided to do it again this year using the same beautiful ribbons, bells and floral, berry and leafy picks as the tree. Additionally, I decorated a wreath to hang above the mantle.

In addition, you can use floral picks and sprays for floral arrangements, centerpieces or garlands hung on the door or staircase.

Think outside the box.

If you find something you love, but it doesn’t fit your plan, can you make a simple change to create something perfect for you? Perhaps, you cut some of the larger sprays into smaller pieces for floral arrangements.

Or, like me, I found a garland of beautiful green glass ornaments tied together with jute. It was the same shade of green as the velvet poinsettias. Therefore, I untied the ornaments from the long jute and retied the ornaments in clusters of two. This allowed me to hang them on the tree as ornaments and repeat the color I love. Or, lay it across the coffee table for an easy styling solution with potted trees, like these I tied ribbon around.

Use code CUTERTUDOR for 10% off everything at Decorator’s Warehouse except Christmas trees and resin.

Looking for more holiday inspiration?

Take the tour to see the rest of the Christmas trees in the Decorator’s Warehouse Christmas Tree Challenge. You will find so many different ideas to decorate your tree in a variety of color schemes and styles.

Sami Riccioli | Hip And Humble Style | Dreaming of Homemaking | Tuft and Trim

Adventures in Decorating | Claire Lynn Home | Nissa Lynn Interiors | Refabbed

Cuter Tudor | Montgo Farmhouse | City Girl Meets Farmboy | Courtney Warren Home

Lastly, check out the 2020 Holidays Christmas Tree Challenge, here. Then, search this hashtag #DWChristmasAtHome on social media. Lastly, follow @DecoratorsWarehouse and me, @cutertudor on Instagram to see how I styled this rustic Christmas tree!

Vintage Christmas Decorations

Hey y’all! Today, I am sharing a few of my favorite vintage Christmas decorations. Then, telling you where I find vintage inspired decor, when I can’t find the real deal. Lastly, I have lots of ideas to use traditional decor and furniture to create a vintage inspired look for the holidays.

Vintage Christmas Decorations

So, I’ve rounded up the most popular kinds of vintage Christmas decorations, below. Consequently, this list has me thinking… did everyone’s grandparents have a lighted, ceramic Christmas tree? I know that mine did.

  • Bottlebrush or tinsel trees
  • Handmade stockings with felt, embroidery, needlepoint, beading
  • Lit ceramic Christmas trees
  • Putz cardboard houses
  • Vintage, mercury glass, & Shiny Brite ornaments
  • Retro holiday images, figurines, postcards or signs
  • Christmas, jingle and sleigh bells
  • Bubble lights or candle lights
  • Nutcrackers, train sets and snow globes
  • Holiday china, glassware and Santa mugs

You can look for real vintage Christmas decorations at antique stores, junk shops and vintage markets. However, you can find vintage resellers online at Etsy or Ebay.

My favorite Christmas antique find is a set of hand painted Santa mugs and punch bowl that my mother in law and I spotted at Cedar Chest Antique Mall outside Waco, Texas. Instantly, it reminded me of the ones that my husband’s grandmother owned and used every Christmas Eve. Therefore, the charming Santa face, perfect for homemade hot cocoa, made its way home with me.

Vintage Inspired Decor

In addition, vintage inspired decor, while not actually vintage, is an affordable option, too. Most home decor stores, like Hobby Lobby, Kirkland’s or Warmart offer some kind of vintage, retro or farmhouse inspired Christmas decor.

For example, the retro Santa placemats are from Hester and Cook, who make paper accents for tables. Even though, the postcards are reproduction prints, I styled them in vintage ‘flower frogs.’

Decorator’s Warehouse

Last year, I visited Decorator’s Warehouse, with over 60,000 square feet of holiday finds and 20 beautifully decorated trees. After seeing lots of inspiration, I decorated a vintage inspired coastal Christmas tree in my home.

These are a few vintage inspired pieces from Decorator’s Warehouse. For example, I styled the large jingle bells on my Christmas tree and tied a few to the fire place mantle garland, too. Lastly, I linked a few vintage reproduction favorites, like bubble lights and Grandma’s lit ceramic tree, if you have been on the hunt for those.

  1. Tin jingle bells in 3 sizes 2. Vintage inspired bell tree 3. Bottle brush tree in jar 4. Bubble lights 5. Lit ceramic tree 6 LED water globe
This vintage inspired fireplace mantle with large bells and garlands is my favorite that I have decorated.

Antique Farmhouse

In addition, Antique Farmhouse has an amazing selection of farmhouse style home decor, including vintage Christmas decorations. I love to shop there for lanterns, candlesticks & candles to add a little twinkle during the holidays. Here are a few that I love: 1. Chippy candlesticks 2. Clip on Candlesticks 3. Pinecone candles 4.Stripe Pillows 5. Galvanized Tray 6. Decorative oil lamps

Plus, Antique Farmhouse has a variety of architectural wall decor, like the lattice window that I have which is perfect for layering artwork or signs year round.

Traditional Antique Furniture + Vintage Decor

Honestly, I do not have many original vintage Christmas decorations. However, I do love the charm and nostalgic feel that vintage pieces provide into a home. Often, if you integrate traditional antique furniture or vintage finds with newer Christmas decor, you can still achieve the look that vintage Christmas decorations bring into your home.

  • Silver platters, vases or bowls
  • Wooden sleds, sleighs, skis, ice skates or rocking horses
  • Brass or copper – candlesticks, bells, pots
  • Architectural finds – gates, spindles, corbels, chippy fireplace mantles, frames
  • Wooden crates, old baskets, enamel buckets, postal boxes
  • Natural elements – fresh greenery, pinecones, antlers, dried fruit
  • Simple gift wrap – plain or brown paper, ticking stripe or gingham ribbon, sprigs of greenery or stamped tags
  • Lanterns – decorative, candle or vintage railroad

A fresh greenery wreath, from Lynch Creek farms, and art hang over a chippy gate. Next, a sled that a neighbor had given me when I was about 12 years old always makes its way into my Christmas decor. I guess I have always found the charm in vintage things. Basically, I love the juxtaposition of new and old, shiny and chippy together.

I found a reproduction wood and red sled, here and galvanized tabletop sleighs, here.

Ideas to Mix Vintage with New or Reproduction

A few years ago, I bought this amazing, light blue antique fireplace mantle with the original mirrored insert. By simply adding glass trees, which have the look of antique mercury glass, and winter greens, this display had so much character.

One of my favorite ways to display a wreath, is layering it over an antique mirror, chalkboard or architectural find. Therefore, you can add charm typically found in an older home by mixing new with older pieces.

In addition, it is a great way to show off any collections or family heirlooms. Below right, the writing desk belonged to my husband’s grandmother. So, it is one of our family’s most beloved heirlooms. It is flanked by a wall of vintage silver platters that my mother in law and I collected from antique shops, and handmade stockings for each family member.

Vintage Copper and Silver

Now, for an onslaught of holiday vignettes featuring my collection of vintage inspired or vintage Christmas decorations. Notice, the combination of copper, silver and gold. When used together, it’s hard to distinguish between new and vintage pieces. In addition, the miniature velvety reindeer are only a few years old, but have the vintage look that I love. Especially, when displayed with retro Santa Claus.

I love that bottle brush trees have gained popularity in recent years. It’s fun to add to my collection and mix the different styles. While I do not have any original putz cardboard houses, these reproduction ones were an affordable option about 8 years ago. Often, I will add one to a styled tray, or display the entire collection into one village. The newer houses include a battery operated light, so it’s a beautiful display at night, too.

Gingham Checks and Ticking Stripes

Another way to achieve a vintage look during the holidays is to use simple gift wrap. For example, wrap gifts with brown Kraft paper or solid colored wrapping paper. Then, tie packages with velvet, satin, or patterned ribbons which can be reused year after year. For a fun detail, tuck in sprigs of fresh greenery or hand stamped gift tags to each bow.

Patterns, like ticking stripes and gingham checks pair well together and add a farmhouse or vintage feel. Consider using it in gift wrap, textiles like pillows and table linens or paint stripes on the back of a cabinet. Finally, check out more of this blue and white winter table, shown below.

I hope you enjoyed learning how I use vintage Christmas decorations in my home. If you are new, and love home decor tips, simple DIYS, easy recipes and life in Waco, Texas, subscribe to the blog, here. Lastly, I appreciate any shares on Facebook or Pinterest so others can get inspired, too.

12 DIYs of Christmas: DIY Wood Ornaments

DIY Wood Ornaments with HART Tools

This holiday season, I am partnering with HART tools to create a fun DIY wood ornament for your Christmas tree.  The best part is that you can make these ornaments in any size or from different types of wood or metal. So, these can hang as ornaments on your tree or a smaller version can serve as gift tags on your packages.

 

HART power tools work on many types of materials. For instance, you can use a sheet of galvanized metal, weathered wood, or masonite wood panels.  I chose to use white beaded plywood, because it has a neat texture that mimics the stripes of treasured vintage ornaments.  Plus, it evokes a cottage Christmas feel that I love.

For this DIY project, I am using the HART cordless power tools with a shared rechargeable battery.  This includes the HART Reciprocating Saw to cut, the Multitool to sand and distress edges of wood, and the Rotary Tool for fine sanding and cutting a hole as the ornament’s hanger. It’s quick to swap out the battery from one tool to another.

 

Instructions for DIY Wood Ornaments

Step 1: First, draw or print an ornament template onto paper.  Then, cut out the template and trace the ornament shape onto the beaded plywood material.

 

Step 2. Next, cut out the outline of the ornament from the beaded plywood using the HART Reciprocating Saw. When cutting wood, use wood clamps to hold securely in place. Be sure to wear protective goggles when cutting and sanding wood.

 

Step 3. Sand the edges of the wood ornament using the HART Multitool and 80 grit sandpaper.  Then, distress the raised wood trim on the beaded plywood.

Step 4. With the rotary tool and drill bit, pierce a hole near the top center of the ornament. Then, use the sanding attachment to smooth.  Lastly, pull a ribbon to through the hole to hang.

 

 

Step 5. Hang ornaments on the tree and enjoy!

 

HART tools are great gifts!

P.S.  These HART tools are only available at Walmart and Walmart.com.  You can learn more about them by visiting HartTools.com.  There are over 300 products from hand tools, lawn/garden, automotive to power tools which will become available in the coming months! The HART power tools that I used for this DIY project will make a great gift for the DIYer, woodworker or home renovator on your gift list.  These tools are lightweight, compact and cordless.

 

Now, save this post to your ‘DIY Christmas’ Pinterest Board by tapping the red ‘pin’ on the top left of this image. Then, follow along all month as I share the 12 DIYs of Christmas, including the 5th DIY, a Home for the Holidays DIY wood ornament  and the 6th DIY Snow Globe Treat Containers!  Happy holidays and happy DIYing, y’all!

Cottage Style Christmas Living Room Tour

Christmas Home Tour

Cottage Style Christmas in the Living Room

Over the past year, I have really tried to hone in on my decor style. I love the modern cottage style, especially during the holidays.  Most importantly, I just want my home to feel warm and inviting, cozy and comfortable.  With natural elements and a fairly neutral scheme, I think it feels ‘just like home’ in my cottage style Christmas living room.

Cottage Style Christmas Tree

Y’all, my Christmas tree from Hammacher Schlemmer is gorgeous. I forgot how amazing it was to decorate without a flocked tree…AKA a flocking mess.  Anyways, it has the most magical glow with 5 different light settings and 2500 twinkling lights.  On the tree, I added cotton stems, magnolia blooms, and tiny blue and white churches.  Plus, a mix of mercury glass, burlap and wood ornaments.

 

Cozy Cottage Style Vibes

When I think of cottage style, I think of comfortable living with a light and airy color palette, patterned textiles, and eclectic furniture. Therefore, I lean towards neutrals with blues and greens and use a mix of old and new furniture.  For example, the coffee table and dresser belonged to my husband’s grandmother, but the linen couch is custom order from a local furniture store in Waco, Texas.

 

My favorite combination is weathered woods mixed with lots of natural elements like lots of greenery, pinecones, and even cotton stems. However, I do like to add in a little spark with galvanized metals and vintage silver.

 

Fireplace Mantle Styling

Above the fireplace mantle, I layered a nativity scene art and “For Snto us a Savior is Born,’ sign on a chippy blue gate with fresh garland and a Blended Bay wreath from Lynch Creek Farms. Lanterns filled with battery operated candles are placed in front of the fireplace.  For this room, I really wanted the holidays to feel Christ centered.

Next, I hung blue ticking stripe stockings from Returning Grace with monogrammed wood beads from Hobby Lobby.  In addition, I layered a glittery Merry Christmas garland with felt pom-poms.  Mixing textures creates variety and variety is the spice of life!

 

Thank you for taking the tour of my cottage style Christmas in my living room.  Next, my dining room decorated for Christmas is posted here.  Or, you can tour my bedroom decorated in blues, here. Lastly, if you want to see more holiday inspiration or how I am updating our 1986 Tudor style home, catch me on instagram @cutertudor!

 

5 Ways to Style Mercury Glass Trees

5 Ways to Style Mercury Glass Trees

For 5 Way Wednesday, I partnered with Lenox to share 5 different ways to style mercury glass trees. These Lenox mercury glass trees from the Wintry Woods collection add a beautiful sparkle to any home during the holidays. Not only are they pre-lit and offer a romantic, twinkly glow, but the green mercury glass contrasts beautifully with fresh and faux greenery.  Plus, they are gorgeous during the day or night!

How to Decorate with Mercury Glass Trees

1. Dining Table Centerpiece

For this centerpiece idea, first, lay down a table runner to group the decor.  Then, use a mix of shiny mercury glass trees combined with the snow covered texture of pinecones and bottle brush trees.  I love to mix the sparkly glam with rustic, natural elements during Christmas time.

2. Fireplace Mantle Decoration

First, hang a holiday inspired artwork, sign or wreath in the center of the mantle.  Then, place a couple of mercury glass trees on either side. Lastly, decorate with fresh or faux greenery, adding ribbon or Christmas stems to the garland as preferred.

 

3. Holiday Vignettes

These mercury glass trees make a beautiful statement to any holiday vignette.  When styling a vignette, decorate in groups of three and vary the height of the objects using books or risers.  Also, use a variety of textures found in glass, metal, wood, and natural elements. These are the perfect addition of twinkly lights and a sparkly finish.

4. Coffee Table Christmas Display

Much like the other holiday vignettes, these mercury glass trees can be grouped together with other collections of Christmas trees.  However, when placed on a stack of chippy pedestals with faux snow too, they become a unique holiday display. It’s like looking into a snow globe!  Plus, it would be fun to pair these in the middle of a Christmas village.

5. Buffet Table Styling

When decorating a buffet table, show off your collection of mercury glass trees and holiday decor. However, leave room for entertaining and serving pieces, too.  These gold rimmed bar glasses and snowflake carved plates are also part of the Lenox holiday collection.

If you have a console table to style, place a glass tree next to the lamp with one more holiday decoration like a Putz house or snowman!

 

I hope you are inspired with these ideas to decorate with mercury glass trees.  They are one of my favorite things to collect and use in my holiday decor.  Plus, they make beautiful gifts for the home decor lover!

I hope you check out the rest of the Lenox holiday collection, including the porcelain lit tree that everyone remembers from Grandma’s house. But first, check out how I used the Lenox pinecone and holly platter to start a new tradition in my home… Dessert for Dinner, y’all!

Thank you for stopping by the Cuter Tudor Blog!  Please share this on your social media, or save the image below to your Christmas Inspiration Pinterest Board by tapping the red pin on the top left of the pic! Happy decorating, y’all!