yule making: decorations

8 December 2013

So this is the fourth post today! that must be some kind of record. I have been really busy lately, but I do love to make things and pretend that I'm a Primary school art teacher.
This year, like every year, I tried to make the tree look a bit different. It's hard when decorations are so expensive and you need a lot of them to make a difference right? So I thought of pine cones as a cheap decoration, and also I like to stick to the original idea of winter solstice which is all about bringing nature indoors, decorating it and celebrating the fact that it will be spring soon! I guess that makes it ok to put paper moths and butterflies on the tree too, as they are the perfect symbol of re-birth and renewal. Do I sound like a hippy? 

anyways, I used some of our extra good quality one coat emulsion paint, which was way too thick, so I had to water it down a bit.

they took ages to dry, but once they were, I glued some mini metal bulldog clips to the bottoms and dabbed them with a bit of gold glitter paint.


we always buy one decoration from Liberty's, but this year we bought two. This sparkly pear, and a moose bauble. We splashed out!

I'm quite happy with this painted pine tree twig.

that book paper bunting I made a few years ago, it survived two house moves!

and my vintage bauble collection which I treasure. This is one of my favourites...

these snowflakes are from a little local shop here on the Island.

Our little'un LOVES to help build the fire (we have two usable fireplaces btw, this one is sort of in the kitchen area, tea room?) thats sounds kind of posh, which we most definitely are not.

(yes I know we are missing the 'ash boxes'?? from our fireplaces, the chimney door thingy is also broken, hence big gaping hole).

anyhow, its so lovely to sit by the fire and think of what needs to be done next. I do love a list.
Please excuse my poor spelling ; )

So decorating is a bit slow and I seem to have lost a few strings of lights during the move. We found those big pine branches in the woods, I love the smell of them.
We also purchased two school benches, one of them is next to our dinning table, the other lives under the window. This is a nice place to sit down, tie on kiddos shoes, store stuff or just look at a book.

this room was kind of an in-between room with no real purpose. It's a bit like a corridor and we kept just plonking all our coats and bags there and we never sat in it or appreciated it, but now we have decorated it and lit the fire, I love it so much and we have so many places to sit now. (which is great if you have an argument or its your day off from kiddo minding).

I'm collecting old prints and paintings of mountains. I have two thus far, is that classed as a collection? I'm on the look out for more.

this lantern was a recent Ikea purchase, I'm kicking myself that I didn't buy more of them.

I have finally got round to sewing up some curtains, I made ones for the front room which was quite a job as its a bay window, and this one. I didn't have enough proper curtain wire when I took this photo so it looks a bit saggy here, but I'm really pleased with them in the end.

In the mornings our kiddo kisses the tree 'mmmmwaaahhh' with a big lip smacking sound. I just love it!

this is the living room...

by the way, it might seem like our house is really big, but actually the rooms are quite small so it's a bit misleading. It's perfect for us though.

More vintage baubles, I broke just two this year : (

I'm over the moon to have found some gold letter stickers to do this, I never thought i'd find any, but came across them online.

some mouldy logs and fake snow, cheap and cheerful.

ahhh I love all things Yuletide. I think I need to stop and put my feet up now and appreciate all my doings with a large glass of wine.


  1. Donna8.12.13

    Ooh, it all looks so magical and wintry. Much more stylish than my fake white tree and gaudy decs-I have got a good collection of vintage glass baubles too courtesy of the local rubbish tip last year (thanks hubby). Love your cockatoo in his bobble hat!

    1. ah thank you Donna! I bet your tree looks just a magical! its amazing what a few twigs and candles can do.

  2. so so beautiful! I feel inspired. Thanks Artemis x

  3. Stasie8.12.13

    Your home is so so lovely.

  4. simply stunning - we are on the exact same wavelength when it comes to decorating for yule x

  5. Anonymous8.12.13

    I would say you deserve a BOTTLE of wine, after all your hard work. Your house is really beautiful and it seems to suit your family perfectly. You put me to shame with all your crafting....As you love Liberty so much, I would imagine you were glued to channel 4 last week, watching the documentary series about it. What an amazing shop, I was so envious of the young assistant to the head of the shop! from Ruth in Dublin.

  6. Anonymous8.12.13

    If i was your kid, i'd be mad at you for putting countless pics of me on the internet

    1. really??
      I have thought about this a lot, and I guess it's something you either feel strongly about or don't. My blog is my diary about my life and she is a big part of my life.
      There have been and always will be pictures of children and babies, on tv, in magazines, modelling clothes in online shops, acting in films etc... do you feel the same way about that to I wonder?

      I try not to use her name when I'm writing so it's not that easy for her to come up on a search, but other than that I'm fine with it. Its such an easy way for all her family around the world to see us and what we are doing.

      I'm sorry you don't feel the same way though.

    2. I think it's a beautiful thing to write your blog with pictures of your daughter in it. One day she will be able to look back at it and see all the things you did together and it will be a really charming record of her life. I would have loved to do this when my children were little but the internet was a dial up squeak. Now, they just have my word for it that we made tons of stuff and did loads of amazing things. I love your blog Artemis. It's full of inspiration and visual delights. I hope Anonymous doesn't put you off creating posts...don't usually comment but am always lurking.

    3. Anonymous9.12.13

      Some of my favourite posts involve Pehr, keep them coming! :o)

    4. The law is that your children will be annoyed with almost everything you do/don't do by the time they are teenagers so I wouldn't worry about it ;)

    5. ha ha! thats so true! we didn't have internet when I was a nipper but if my mum had published, say, a series of books about what we got up to when I was little, I'd be absolutely fascinated by it! As it is, I have seen only about 5 photos of me as a baby/toddler. I guess having a blog gives me the drive to document these things which will one day be really important to her. If not, then I'll just delete my blog or make it private. However, I think the lovely comments she gets on this blog might help her, if she ever feels down or alone in the future.

    6. In the future, she will love you for this. It is delightful. All your life before she came along too. What a fantastic historical document. I have a dusty faded black and white pic of my mum and dad before me and I LOVE it. It means everything. Lucky Pehr. She looks happy and beautiful.

    7. One thing I would worry about is how to save this blog long enough for her to be able to read it and enjoy it, as I am afraid things on the internet are surprisingly ephemeral. My solution was to make a printed "book" of the three years worth of blog-writing about our family life. It makes me feel good knowing that even if blogger (where my blog is hosted) no longer exists in one of the coming years, I have the posts safely squeezed in our bookshelf between the photo albums. Now I just need to make sure I keep this up somewhat periodically so that kid #2 also has paper copies of the happening in her early life...

      P.S. I find your blog absolutely lovely and inspiring, so I do hope you keep it public for many years to come!

    8. Oh Sari that's a great idea, I think I'm going to look into that. I would be so upset if something happened and my entire blog got wiped away! and thank you for your lovely comment too!

    9. Well I am happy if you found the idea useful. You bloggers give us readers so much that I often wish there was a way for readers to give back a little to our favourite bloggers :)

      There are several companies online which will turn your blog into a book, but I found the prices too steep as I needed to do this for several years at once. What we ended up doing was to find some (free I think?) software which turned the whole blog into a huge pdf, and then I got that printed and binded (well just with a spiral thing, not really like a real book). Maybe next time our finances are looking up and I can afford to get something nicer, but this will do for now :)

  7. Anonymous8.12.13

    So so lovely!! Would love to see more pictures of your home!

  8. This makes me wish so much that my fireplace WORKED! Beautiful!

  9. Love the final picture with the winter hat on the bird, so cute! x

  10. Oh, your home looks soooo comfy and friendly and cozy - just perfect!
    Have a wonderful christmas time!

  11. Love everything. What a fun, messy time you had with the pine cones! A year or two more and you will have little hands getting mucky too.
    Love all your floorboards. We have floorboards badly in need of re-sanding and varnishing. Yours look gorgeous.
    I like the mantle with the cockatoo the best. Nice arrangement. xx

  12. I love the little beanie on the cocky's crest.

  13. Beautiful and inspring. And I don't even like Xmas/yule clebrations and decs! xx

  14. Your home is so sooo beautiful! Love all the gorgeous wintery Christmassy details, it all looks completely gorgeous!

  15. Anonymous9.12.13

    Hello, I find your blog so very inspiring! You really are very talented. I love your new home and your lovely family. I also adore all the blog posts you've just done in one evening :-) I rarely get chance to look at blogs anymore, but this is the one blog I come back to again & again. I hope you have a lovely first christmas in your new home. Best wishes, Emily x

  16. I look forward to your Christmas decorations post every year :) You have some wonderful ideas and a beautiful home and family! Can I ask where you found the gold letters for Pehr's cabinet? I am looking for something similar! x

  17. I just can't ever get enough of your beautiful self, family, and home -- every bit of it is always so lovely :) xoxo from Boston!

  18. Well done of getting organized for Christmas. I've yet to start decorating our home. It's this week's job - defo! Beachhutcook x

  19. Oh my, your house and winter solstice decorations are looking so gorgeous! loving all the yultide making posts too! x

  20. So whimsical and festive, and positively perfect in every way!

  21. Your house looks so festive and cosy...love it! I've been collecting branches for xmas decorations today.

  22. Anonymous9.12.13

    Those vintage ornaments that look just like (no kidding) the antiques that my Mom always puts at the tippy-top of the tree. That tree is far away this christmas, so seeing yours gave me a good smile. Thanks bunches. :)

    The Board and Wire

  23. How creative and amazing you are!! REALLY! I'm endlessly inspired by your quaint little life full of making, wandering, and loving your little family. SO WONDERFUL! Thank you so much for sharing it all with us.

  24. i love every single thing about this post - the homemade decorations, the cozy fire, the beautiful styling to your home - everything looks so so wonderful!

  25. There are 1,000 comments I want to make about how beautiful and inspiring your life looks. But, I'll spare you and just ask you one question...for now. :)
    How can I make or buy paper butterflies like that? I LOVE the idea of spending the holidays celebrating nature!

    1. ahhh thank you!
      I bought those paper butterflies on ebay here:


      bit of a long link which you may have to cut and paste into google!

  26. Please write a book about your life, home and makes!
    I would definitely buy it!

  27. I second the request for a book!

    Your beautiful home is giving me so much inspiration for my own. My partner and I just moved into a cute little house and are finally at the point where we want to start decorating for the holidays. I may have to steal some of your ideas. :)

  28. ah, this whole post is just so lovely… I love all of your Yule touches around your house (and your actual house is beautiful too). I too have a collection of vintage baubles and I treasure them :) x



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