I decided to do a very simple tree this year using only handmade ornaments -- most I made but some I have found at craft shows and small shops from VA, WV and NC. I have some made out of old quilts pieces, some are needlepoint and counted cross stitch that I made over the years and some are vintage Linsey-woolsy stars that I found at a craft fair years ago.
Okay, so the tree is up and I think "Yeah, I'm done" until I stand back and decide it needs tweaking -- a little more here and something else there to add that extra special touch. It's never-ending! A little more raffia, another rusty jingle bell, some red berries stuck between the branches, you know how it is. There's always room for just one more thing! And then suddenly it's "bada bing, bada boom" and it really is done! Now for the next big challenge -- the mantle.
As with the tree, it's all about the layers. I start with fake greens because even though I have a gas fireplace, I don't want any chance of live dry greens going up in flames! Once the basic greens are in place, I add some of the Santa's that I have collected over the years. Then more natural things to make it all look fuller -- pine cones, berries and twigs all add to the effect I'm trying to achieve -- I want it to look like I went to the woods and gathered everything myself. Me and Martha Stewart foraging in the woods. Yeah, right!
The stockings are all counted cross stitch and made for our grandchildren the years they were born. The Santa in the frame is needlepoint that I stitched about 20 years ago.
As my grandmother used to say . . . "Lawsy mercy, I'm plum tuckered out!" Enough for now -- there are still some things that I want to show you but not tonight. And it's only 2 weeks until the "big day" -- I still have shopping to do and cards to make!
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