I’m so thrilled to finally be blogging about this magical day we had at a local farmhouse several weeks ago. I have so much to share for the holidays and what feels like so little time! Better later than planned than never, right? Today’s post is the first in a 3-part holiday series. (Lots more holiday inspiration here!)
First up, I have a DIY Holiday Mantel Garland, DIY Minimal Wreaths, and Dessert Buffet Styling Inspiration. Then, next week I’ll be sharing Seven Holiday Party Looks (with tips and tricks for hair and makeup), and finally, a Simple, Scandinavian-Inspired Holiday Table & Party. Lots of pretty photos and holiday inspiration coming your way!
This 3-part holiday series was all styled and shot at Ballenger Farm, a new local Airbnb! After planning out some holiday inspiration that I wanted to share with you guys, I decided it’d be perfect to work at Ballenger Farm, and Liz was more than obliging!
If you’re like me, you don’t have a mantel, then Christmas is the time of year you most wish for one, to decorate with ALL the greenery and candlesticks, and of course, to hang the Christmas stockings. Since I don’t have a fireplace, and our home is too small to even pretend we have one by sticking a mantel someplace (no walls are big enough), I borrowed the dining room at the perfect Ballenger Farm! Read on for all the DIYs and styling inspiration!
Making your own garland for a mantel is super simple, mostly because it doesn’t have to be as sturdy as a garland you’d be hanging, say, on your banister or around a doorway. Because it’s mainly resting ON the mantel, you can get away with less twisting and securing.
These are my favorite type of wreath to make, because almost anything goes! You can use any type of form (grape vine, metal, embroidery hoop, etc) and any type of greens and embellishments. You can make them as simple or as complicated as you like. For these wreath forms, we started with artificial wreaths from IKEA and just ripped off the pre-decoration and used the gold form, because it was cheaper than buying the forms new!
For this holiday party, I wanted a very Scandinavian, minimal feel, and decided to keep the color pallet very limited. And no warm tones in the decor, which was actually super difficult since I LOVE me some warm tones. No brass, no gold, no reds, etc. I really wanted that cake from Scout Bake Shop to shine on that dessert buffet, since it is obviously the star. How STUNNING is that piece of art? I was so honored that Megan said YES when I asked her to be a part of this shoot. And as pretty as this cake is, it was like 1000x yummier to eat, if that’s even possible. A group of 7 ladies gobbled it up in about 30 seconds.
Mostly everything we used for styling the dessert buffet was black or grey or white. I had to hunt down those matte black candlesticks, and only found them the DAY BEFORE the shoot. But they were an essential element! Foraged pinecones and Carolina Sapphire greens were nestled under the glass domes. I used flower frogs to hold the cypress greens upright (love that trick). The gifts were wrapped in matte black paper and tied with dark grey velvet ribbon.
If you want to recreate this look, here are some links:
I hope you’ve been inspired to make some natural decor and fill your home with some simple holiday cheer this month! I cannot wait to share the rest of this series next week!
AND A HUGE THANK YOU to the contributors for this post:
Photography: Hilary Hyland
Cake: Scouts Bake Shop
Venue: Ballenger Farm
Styling Assistants: Anna & Rebekah of Gilded Gatherings
And of course, Meghan, who held the day together
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