Archives For Holiday

Modern or traditional? Designer or DIY? Wacky and whimsical, or subtle and minimal? Whatever your style, there’s a wreath to match. The New York Times recently went wreath shopping with Kevin Hertzog, a freelance set designer and prop stylist who once worked on Bergdorf Goodman’s famous holiday displays, so he knows a thing or two about wreaths. You’ll find a few of our favorites below. See any that would look good on your door?

Wreaths__Holidays_in_the_Round_7-_NYTimes_com

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Source: The New York Times

Much like Hawaii’s Pumpkin Crunch or Oklahoma’s Sopapilla Casserole, we’ll keep this short and sweet. We love this interactive map from The New York Times that shows the most unusually popular food in each state, based on data from Google searches. The quirky names and flavor combinations are a reflection of the diverse cultures that came together to create the melting pot of America, and as much as we love our traditional dishes, we feel inspired to try something new this year.

So whether you’re sitting down to a plate of Spinach Maria in Tennessee, or heading to Idaho for some Frog Eye Salad, we hope you enjoy every bite.

Source: The New York Times

Sure, at this point in your holiday meal prep, the focus may be on food. Between making your grocery list, organizing ingredients, and planning out your day-of oven schedule, it’s easy to forget about setting your holiday table. But David at Another Decor Blog reminds us not to neglect that holiday table essential, the Thanksgiving centerpiece.

Centerpieces have graced tables on special occasions for thousands of years. In Roman times, tables were decorated with natural materials like leaves and branches. In the middle ages, decorative marzipan figurines were a popular choice for holiday tablescapes. 18th century centerpieces frequently incorporated a mirror, to reflect the bounty of food, flowers, and candles on the table.

Centerpiece trends today are broad and varied, so the choice is up to you to pick what best matches your home and style, but many experts feel it’s based to stick to the basics, such as natural materials like gourds and flowers. So take a look at these beautiful ideas for some inspiration, and then get to work on some of your own!

Source: Another Decor Blog 

When it comes to Halloween DIYs, whether costume, decor, or entertaining in nature, it must be acknowledged that Martha Stewart is the one true master of the holiday. Need proof? Look through this rundown of Martha’s Halloween costumes throughout the years. Impressive, to say the least.

If you need last-minute dress up ideas, spooky cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, or just want to perk up your porch before the trick-or-treaters come knocking, we suggest going straight to the source. To save you some time, we’ve found a few favorites below that will instantly improve your Halloween. Happy haunting!

Cast a shadow with some spooky silhouettes:

Going to a party? Pick up glue, glasses, and plastic insects and your costume is covered:

Whip up some creepy cocktails for your Halloween happy hour:

Take your porch from standard to scary with these hanging paper bats:

Source: Martha Stewart Living

Valentine’s Day is coming up tomorrow and love is in the air! If you’re looking for a last minute travel destination, consider checking out one of these Top 10 romantic cities selected by Livability.

10. Hot Springs, Arkansas––Once a popular destination for gangsters like Al Capone, Hot Springs has scenery, restaurants, antique shops, spas, and hiking. Hot spots include historic Bathhouse Row, the Grand Promenade, and Hot Springs National Park.

9. Coral Gables, Florida––A suburb of Miami, “The City Beautiful” is known for its wide avenues, green spaces, monumental buildings, and ornate plazas. For a romantic destination try the Venetian Pool with its crystal blue water, waterfalls, and cave-like grottos for couples to hide away.

8. Cambridge, Massachusetts––This enchanting city is home to two top tier universities, historic mansions, tons of bookstores, and a dynamic art scene. Take a stroll along the Charles River or take your date to one of the many music clubs, theaters, museums, and art galleries in historic downtown.

7. Savannah, Georgia––Imagine taking a horse drawn carriage ride through cobblestone streets lined with Victorian architecture, past fountains and trees draped with Spanish moss. What could be more romantic?

6. Kansas City, Missouri––Filled with Old-World architecture, Kansas City’s growing collection of performance venues, museums, shopping, sports attractions, and eclectic eateries is perfect for date night.

5. Santa Fe, New Mexico––Explore the Adobe buildings dating back to the late 1600s, the red mountains and green valleys, nearby vineyards, ancient Indian ruins, and traditional pueblos. As far as dining options, fresh takes on traditional foods and inventive uses of the chile pepper landed Santa Fe among the country’s best food cities.

4. Charlottesville, Virginia––Mountain views, historic architecture, sophisticated restaurants, and a thriving performing arts scene––what more could you want? Highlights include the Downtown Mall, Main Street Arena, and the Foxfield Inn, complete with in-room Jacuzzis!

3. Bend, Oregon––With a range of surroundings including high desert, pine forest, snowy mountain peaks, and cascading rivers, Bend is the perfect romantic getaway for couples who love the outdoors.

2. Napa, California––Wine country. Need we say more?

1. Scottsdale, Arizona––This town has a little bit of everything from spas to restaurants to night clubs. For the ultimate in romance, take a sunset hot air balloon ride over the legume trees and columnar cacti of the Sonoran Desert.

This article can be found in its original form on Livability

Photo: Napa, California via Millwood Inn

Bryan, Texas is where you will find the “sweetest” home. This house (covering an area of 2,520 square feet and standing at 21 feet high) has been declared the biggest gingerbread house ever by Guinness World Records.

The house was built by the Traditions Club near Texas A&M University to help raise money for a trauma center at regional St. Joseph’s Hospital.

The sugary exterior was mounted to a wooden frame to hold it in place. To make the gingerbread panels they mixed together thousands of pounds of butter and brown sugar, over 7,000 eggs, 1,000 ounces of ginger, and more. The whole edible structure is approximately 36 million calories.

Due to the Texas sun, constant repair is required in order to keep the house from being damaged. The home is open for visitors to come check out the large confectionary creation.

Sources: CBS News and Inman

Photo: Texas A&M University

pomegranatesIf you’re hosting Thanksgiving tomorrow but haven’t had time to decorate, you may want to try one of these 5 simple ideas from Country Living:

Fruit Centerpieces: Pomegranates can make beautiful centerpieces. Cut branches to height that allows its heavy fruits to rest on the rim of your vase and then fill the rest with fall foliage such as purple shiso leaves. You can also try this with apples or persimmons.

Crabapple Arrangement: This is an easy arrangement that can spruce up any space.  Simply remove the leaves from each limb and then display each in a vase. Use different sized vases for the varying limbs. You an also try this with figs or chestnuts.

2 crabapple

Craft a Unique Table Runner: Try this DIY leaf table runner from blue and green felt. Use this leaf template to cut out shapes to traverse your table in an overlapping design.

4 pinecones

Pinecone Door Hanging: This pinecone cluster is an alternative to the standard wreath. To make, gather 8 four to six inch pinecones and 8 two-foot long pieces of silk ribbon. Use a hot glue gun to adhere the last two inches of each ribbon to the base of the cone.  When the glue is dry collect all the ribbons staggering them at different lengths and tie the end in a knot.

Put Your Stamp on Cocktail Napkins: Stamp messages and designs onto small cocktail napkins. You can even have your kids help you with this activity.

This article can be found in its original form on Country Living.