Finding rusty old junk is fun! Nevertheless, I have found that no matter how much "stuff" I find and collect, only God can fully satisfy my heart. Matthew 6:19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Winter In The Cottage

People, it's winter. I have a love of winter, with my endearments to all things white and wooly. I love the idea of winter. It's beautiful peacefulness after the rush of the holidays. Snuggling under thick blankets with hot tea while snow falls gently. No traffic noise outside, no school in the morning. Warm hearty soups. Icicles glistening like chandelier prisms. I love it all. Except...when it hits us like it has this winter! Subzero temperatures, broken water lines, the inflammation of my joints and muscles as a result of the cold. My child having cabin fever from almost a month of no school. My older son in college calling to tell me it's so cold in his dorm he can't relax. NO, those things I don't like. But I am not one to start thinking of spring immediately after Christmas, because there are truly so many winter wonders. (If you love winter, be sure to check out my "Winter Wonders" board on Pinterest, and if you especially love white, shabby and farmhouse, be sure to click on  last year's winter post, where I was only Dreaming Of A White Winter.)

We recently got our first real snow in several years. Someone commented on facebook that our home looks like Narnia in the snow. I do have to agree it's magical...

 Even if you hate winter, I hope you will enjoy some of my winter touches. There is nothing we can do to change the fact that spring is still months away. Why not celebrate the beautiful landscapes God has created through snow, ice and frost, while waiting for the first crocuses to break through?

Ok, perhaps I  should have titled this post, In Defense Of Winter.

Moving on to the decorating...

This year I did some simple tweaking after removing all of my holiday d├ęcor and kept a woodsy winter theme for my mantel and some shabby-chic touches on my buffet and shelves. As usual I also have a few little primitive items to add to the coziness and homespun feeling I like to create. I used lots of ivories, creams, and whites of course, and layered fabrics, wherever possible. I especially like my shabby chair right now, displaying that fabulous old blanket (love those stripes!), antique lace pillow, and a lovely knitted scarf, a favorite Christmas gift from my sister. This chair just works well year round with simple textile changes.

I started my transition from Christmas to winter with a wintry chalkboard. I traced my little boy's hands and drew some little mittens and snowflakes for a simple design.

In front of my chalkboard is a wonderful big ironstone tureen with a winter scene. I bought this at the flea market in July, always thinking ahead. I topped it with a simple snowman cloche.

Next I created a woodsy-winter mantel using a deer that I rescued from someone's abandoned garden at an estate sale as my focal point. I layered some realistic faux juniper sprigs and pine cones, with small primitive silicone dipped lights. I needed something to balance out the sides. I usually don't go for symmetry, but I got a set of lanterns for Christmas and I thought they would work nicely. I originally used candles in them, but then I found a stack of vintage snow photos in my hoards and decided to tuck a picture of snowy trees in each. For some junky-chic shabby touches, I added the ironstone and silverplate platters to the background and "framed" my deer in an antique frame.

On my buffet I worked in some shabby touches that will transition easily to Valentine's day. I used my favorite garden cherub and a snowy tree in my terrarium with a few silvery-green bulbs and lined the terrarium with moss. I'll simply add some lace and red and pink bulbs in February.

I love these little vintage mittens. I displayed them "drying" by the fireplace at Christmas time. The little saucer features a sweet old-fashioned winter scene. I tucked these treasures in a small orphaned drawer that I shabbied up a bit with white paint.

Here is my "Snow Wishes" jar. I made it last year using a vintage jar, Epsom salts, a bottle brush tree, a large vintage marble and a little girl from Graphics Fairy. I think I can stop making snow wishes now, with another dangerous storm moving in next week! I surrounded the jar with some pretty icy treasures. The antique chandelier prisms reminded me of icicles.

I use lots of silver plate for winter displays. Actually, I use it year round. LOVE IT. Oh and check out that antique seltzer bottle with the chain mesh! I just found it recently at the antique mall where I have a booth.

I really need to stop taking photos in my red robe. My reflection always shows up in the glass and bulbs.

I used more vintage silver plate on my corner cabinet and just added a few little winter things.

One of my favorite displays is  the Christmas card my mom sent this year, actually more of a winter scene than Christmas.

I topped the corner cabinet with my basket display featuring Grace, my vintage jewelry bust. She is wearing a Scottish plaid scarf and antique aviator cap. I used a winter pine tree, some pine cones, some shabby wooden spindles and a vintage book with a woodsy photo on the cover.

Moving on through the house, right as you come through the door I created this winter welcome. I wish you could smell through the computer screen! This lovely preserved juniper just has the softest evergreen scent. I love the small blue berries. I bought two boughs to display after Christmas because I didn't want to keep out a lot of pine and have too much of a Christmas look. The juniper is preserved in glycerin and if wrapped and packed carefully will retain it's fragrance for several years.

Just a simple change on the dress from from a plaid Christmas scarf and Santa hat to this soft ivory scarf and antique leather winter aviator cap.

On the little mantel in our sitting room I kept this book from my Christmas vignette, since the children are making snowballs. I am so glad I discovered the joy of using things I already have to create seasonal displays. It's always a treasure hunt around my own house and it takes a little creativity but that's the fun part.

Well there's about 10 minutes left until February and I did it! I got a January post finished! As most of my followers know, I  am very sick with Lyme Disease and other autoimmune illnesses and I just really struggle to keep up with blogging when symptoms are bad as they have been for a while. But at least I am getting one post in in January. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

 Tomorrow, health permitting, I will start changing out some things for Valentine's day, but winter is far from over according to the extended forecast. Eastern KY is predicted to have 10-12 inches next weekend! I love beautiful snow but I think I'm ready to start working on some spring and Easter crafts to combat cabin fever!

Stay warm and cozy everyone. Sip some hot cocoa, coffee or tea. Enjoy the beauty of winter...spring will arrive eventually,  it always does!
I was featured on:
Common Ground
The Charm Of Home
Have a Daily Cup of Mrs. Olson
Amaze Me Monday


Share Your Cup Thursday
Treasure Hunt Thursday

Feathered Nest Friday
Be Inspired
Home Sweet Home Friday
Thrifty Things Friday
Fabulously Creative Friday
Simple and Sweet Fridays
Redoux's Link Party

Saturday Sparks
Show And Tell Saturday

It's Party Time
Seasonal Sundays
A Bouquet of Talent
Nifty Thrifty Things
Sunday Best Showcase Linky Party

Amaze Me Monday
Inspiration Monday
Monday Funday Link Party

Nifty Thrifty Tuesday
Inspire Me Tuesday
The Scoop
A Return To Loveliness

What's It Wednesday
Blissful Whites Wednesday

Time Travel Thursday
Thriving On Thursday
Home and Garden Thursday
WIldy Original Linky Party