Greetings from Boston on this unseasonably mild but rainy afternoon.
As ALWAYS, my ambitions far outweigh my ability to produce.
Right now, I’m taking a break from opening boxes.
The first box contained my new vintage fireplace toolset.
There was no glass, but they packed it like it would be attached to the exterior of the space shuttle and then expected to survive re-entry.
Styrofoam pellets. My absolute worst. It took me at least 40 minutes to unpack the tools and put the styrofoam in plastic bags. You can’t recycle them. They are a lose/lose situation.
Do you see that bag above? That’s my new fondu pot, looking like it’s about to off itself over the side of the stairwell. haha. I got it at the most darling store on Charles Street on the flat of Beacon Hill. Blackstones, it’s called. I’m in there at least once a week.
By the way, I’m not making fondu. However, the pot is for the party. Sorry, but I don’t want to spoil the surprise.
Anywho, there she is; the most girly fireplace toolset I’ve ever seen. Please notice that the handles are all different from each other. Believe me when I tell you that I looked at hundreds of fireplace tool sets, new and old.
I came close to getting a set with brass duck heads but thought these suited me better.
In case you didn’t see or don’t remember, I’m having a party for 35 women later this week.
One reason I wanted to do the party was to force me to do stuff like this.
And what have we here?
Yes, a garland. A garland from Williams Sonoma.
It was packaged the opposite of the fireplace tools—no wrapping whatsoever. And, the box was perilously close to falling apart.
But, here’s what’s funny.
I’ve ordered so much
crap stuff in the last three weeks; I can’t remember what I’ve ordered and couldn’t remember whether it was faux or real. When I opened up the box, I thought it looked perfect and, thus, FAKE. And then I took a good whiff and went, yep, it’s plastic. But, it’ll do.
Then, I went to the Williams Sonoma website to remind myself what I bought and found out that it is NOT faux but genuine fresh western red cedar.
Oh, good, I bought two of them.
I found out TODAY as I dragged it over to the mantel that I got one piece @25 FEET of garland. haha!
I used about half of it for the Christmas holiday fireplace mantel decor, which you’ll see in a bit.
But, first, I opened the three boxes you can see in the background in the image above.
Awww, so sweet! How did they know? I adore yellow poinsettias.
Remember the last time I decorated for Christmas. It was six years ago, and it’s taken this long to recover from.
You know… I really don’t need to get married.
I don’t even really need a boyfriend. I’ve given up. There are no available boyfriends for me, it appears. However, I’m wondering if there’s a husband I can rent.
“You know you don’t want to live with him; just have him do the heavy lifting, and then he’ll buggar off!”
Raise your hand if you remember that short-lived show from the 60s.
Okay, sorry. It’s time to get serious.
But wait! There’s a card in the box with the poinsettia!
Let’s see what it says:
That was so thoughtful of me. Awww… ;]
Oh, I love the little mesh bags. I’m saving those!
Very sweet. Two are going on the fireplace mantel top shelf and one for the coffee table in the den, I think.
Ack! I was going to show you what I did to the lights.
Well, I got many of the items for myself. And one of them was the leaves with the lights.
The so-called “fairy lights.”
Aren’t fairies supposed to be delicate? Well, the lights are physically barely noticeable– until you turn them on. After that, you could land a 747 with one string of these lights. They’re so bright! So, what did Laurel do? I grabbed a bottle of beige nail polish and dabbed a little on each bulb. Well, it worked! I was going to go all demo on you, but no time today. You’ll just have to take my word for it.
If you take a look at the decorations post, I used the Southern Living image as inspiration for my mantel. I was supposed to get some other lights with faux fruit on them. Instead, I used natural fruit.
Okay, time to see my Holiday Fireplace Mantel Decor.
Please excuse the upside-down fire screen.
Above is one of the earlier images I took. Soon after, I noticed that the pillow on the right chair was missing and, yes, the screen, lol.
Please excuse the lopsided firescreen. Oh, and don’t get too excited about my fire-building skills. It didn’t last long. But, anything for the shot! Right?
Also, the top shelf needs a little tweaking. It doesn’t look as cluttered in person.
Below are some close-up vignettes of the holiday fireplace mantel decor.
The bright light is a lovely pine-scented candle from Anthropologie. And, I love how my antique Staffordshire dogs are ever at the ready amongst the greenery. And, oh my! I see Joe reflected in the mirror. And, the beautiful vintage lamps I bought a year ago.
If you’re looking for antique or vintage Staffordshire dogs, below is a mini widget of ones currently for sale. Most, if not all are 19th century. Please be sure to check sizes. These range from 9″ high to 14″ high. Mine are 12″ high. It is typical for one dog to be slightly larger than the other. (male/female)
(Please click on any image for more information.)
One more showing the right side of the holiday mantel decor.
Well, there’s more to come. But, I think I’m in good shape for my party later this week.
To close, I’m sharing my Suzanne Kasler tabletop tree from Ballard Designs. I couldn’t be happier with it. Thank you, God, it came assembled. Remember my “portable” AC? And, it’s also prelit. All I had to do was take it out of the box and fluff the branches. I think it looks real. And with all of the lovely pine-scented candles I just got, the apartment smells like fresh pine everywhere you go.
Please excuse the wire. This is not where the tree is going, and the wire will be more hidden. By the way, the bulbs are pretty bright here, too, but I have an extension cord with a dimmer on it like this one, so problem solved.
Tomorrow, I will finish decorating the tree.
I hope you enjoyed my Holiday Fireplace Mantel Decor.
Below is a mini widget of items I used in my holiday decor. I couldn’t find the yellow poinsettia at Urban stems, but I put in a small red one in a pretty white pot. They also have a larger version.
(Please click on any image for more information.)
If you’re not interested or already have them, you may be dismissed. ;]
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