Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

Guest Post: Pam writes a great design blog called Housemartin. She is an amazing floral designer and is owns a home, garden & lifestyle shop this  in Portland called Ink & Peat.

Welcome to all the readers at The Inspired Room and thanks to Melissa for including me!

I really had fun with the Holiday decorations this year. I tend to get a bit more romantic for Holiday decor. I seem to need a little sparkle – maybe because it gets dark at 4pm? We decided not to get a tree so I just came up with other ideas to build some vignettes in our home.

Here is the mantelpiece over our fireplace. It’s a sparkly wonderland of different textures. First I set the palette of aqua and silver. I worked with evergreen branches as a base and nested simple white lights inside. It gives the house a Holiday smell without having a whole tree. On top of the mirror is a snowflake garland from Wendy Addison (a true glitter guru) for Season’s of Cannon Falls.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

Off on either end you can see white feather trees that I bought locally but you can get them here.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

Of course, the star of the winter wonderland show was my new-found deery friend – a vintage cement garden ornament. He even dons a vintage turquoise velvet bow for the occasion.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

To add some shine and color, I used large apothecary jars filled with vintage ornaments in my color story. These were from West Elm several years ago but you can get similar ones here. This really would work with any color story – red and gold, green and gold, silver and pink for those of you with non-objecting beau’s.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

and here I have more of a footed fishbowl container filled with ornaments.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

And now onto the dining room vignette… here I brought in more of sense of nature. It is a large tableau created from many elements. In the center is the “tree”. I used 8 very tall mossy branches in a vintage tarnished metal urn. The urn adds some charm and drama.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

The palette is shades of green, brown, pale aqua, gold and silver. The ornaments are a combination of vintage balls as well as new acorn and pinecone ornaments from Martha Stewart for Macy’s (my sis and I kind of went nuts in there the day after Thanksgiving trying to round up our loot before the kiddies came to see Santa after the parade).

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

Here is a closeup of how this was constructed. The branches were all set deep into the container and decorative rocks were piled around the branches to anchor them. Then reindeer moss was added to the top of the container for color and mood.

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

and down below the “tree” was more evergreen branches — these had brown berries which added texture. I also kept my Blue Hubbard squash as I felt they still fit the scene. People tend the throw pumpkins away the minute Halloween is over but I enjoy keeping them as long as possible. I have found the green and white varieties far outlast the orange and I keep them for Holiday decor. I moved the white ones to my porch!

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

And here is a vignette at either side of the tree. I used vintage column pedestals and built on top. I then added an apothecary jar filled with moss. I poked into it these clusters of wired glitter ferns (bought locally but available through Michael’s) and added silver balls to create a vignette. Behind these are bold silver stars (again by Wendy Addison).

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

One  final little vignette on a side table…a mini wonderland with a vintage white deer, a sparkling tree, and acorns. It is all set atop a vintage silver bowl filled with live moss.

Cheers and thanks for coming to see it all!

Holiday Decorating: All-a-sparkle

All photos and decoration descriptions are copyright of Pam @ Housemartin blog. Used by permission.

Next, CLICK A FANCIFUL CRAFT! Don’t miss other posts in this Creative Inspiration Week series: click here for the beginning!


  1. Jenn and Jacqui

    Pam, thank you so much for the stunning beauty you have created and all the inspiration here! Every photo and every item is a visual treat. Your style is exactly what we love, and we wish you all the very best with your new store Ink and Peat, what a great name! If only we did not live in Melbourne Australia, we would be regular visitors for sure! Thank you :)

    Melissa, your are so lovely to host this for us, thank you :) Jenn and Jacqui

  2. Elizabeth Holcombe

    That would be stunningly gorgeous, not “stubbingly”. Now I’m going to go look for my brain. Your decorations are trult lovely!~~~XXOO, Beth

  3. Suzy

    Oh Wow! Your decorations are gorgeous, I love the color palette! Your mantlescape is FAB! That concrete deer just makes it. I love old concrete garden statuary, old silver and the moss is wonderful! Looks straight out of a magazine! xo, suzy

  4. Vee

    I am particularly intrigued by this because my mother has decided not to put up a tree this year. Even though I have offered to do it for her, she says that she can not cope with one at this time. These are wonderful ideas for adding all the charm of holiday decorating without actually using a tree. Thank you!

  5. Teresa

    Wow…these ideas are stunning. So light and airy. Beautiful colors to hold over the season. Great inspiration. Thanks Melissa & Pam, and good luck on your store opening, Pam.

  6. Kathleen Grace

    Beautiful arrangements! I love moss, the color and texture and softness of it is so beautiful!

  7. Joy

    WOW – love it allllllll!

  8. carol eldridge

    Just found your blog and your wonderful photographs of holiday decorating. Please stop by to visit my new blog this week when I post photos of some of my decorating tips.
    thanks for sharing,

    carol eldridge

  9. the feathered nest

    Such gorgeous displays! The concrete garden urn with the branches is my favorite! Love it all!


  10. cathy nash

    Wonderfully inspiring! Thanks for sharing~

  11. Dawn-Enigma Artist

    Lots of inspiration here! Thanks for sharing! I adore the deer on the mantel.

  12. megan duerksen

    i think i will be copying the branches in the pot with moss idea. how beautiful is that?!
    love it.

  13. Cre8Tiva

    i love the natural inspiration shown by pam…all i need to do is go out into my yard…blessings, rebecca

  14. Sharon Goemaere

    Stunning Melissa!Gorgeous in it’s simplicity!
    Blessings from Stayton~Sharon

  15. Nan

    What gorgeous arrangements. Who says you need a big tree to be festive. I love your color schemes.
    Thanks for sharing.

  16. JO

    That dining room center piece is stunning!! Elegant..classy… the overall idea leaves room for limitless possiblities

    Thank you for taking the time to share and inspire


  17. Tracey

    Wow! I love. it. all. Those branches! Genius!I love your site.

  18. janet

    That is just the best, WOW!!! I love decorating with nature (as I have said ad nauseum) and these ideas are wonderful. Bet Pam never met a twig she didn’t love. If I lived in Portland I would be knocking on her door for a job at the new store. If I ever get to Portland it will be my first place to visit ( Melissa, I will pick you up to come with me, OK?).

    Thanks to both of you.
    PS. I finally ate my small blue hubbard. It had been a decoration since October.

  19. Tam

    Dear Pam and Melissa,

    Please come decorate my home. hahahahahahahaha.


    p + p

  20. Ruth Welter

    Just gorgeous and I think the napkin rings from the below post are fabulous as well.

  21. A Fanciful Twist

    Oh Goooodness!!!! How incredible!!! Iwas swooning all the way until the end!!!

  22. Mrs.Limestone

    I have just spent entirely too much of my day pouring over your blog. What a great source of ideas and inspiration. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Penny, Mosaic Artist

    What beautiful decorating ideas! My favorite one is the tarnished silver urn display!

  24. Terri

    Everything is just heavenly! I especially love the little deer, who looks very dapper, and the mossy branches in the urn. Lovely, lovely vignettes. Thanks for sharing and I am so inspired. Too bad I have no time to shop these days with my office workload through the roof. Ugh. I will live vicariously through all of you creative goddesses!

  25. katiedid

    So gorgeous! I am totally inspired! How do people do it all?

  26. Esther Sunday

    Pam! Thank you! Your decorating is great! I live in the wooded Northwest – I am inspired to slosh my way outside to get some branches to decorate! Love, Esther

  27. Neutral Dwelling

    Absolutely beautiful! Thanks for sharing such wonderful ideas!

  28. Jane

    I’m writing a column for a Canadian newspaper about decorating alternatives for those who do not / cannot get a tree. I love your branches and was going to suggest it as a wonderful decorating idea.

    I’m really hoping you’d grant me permission to use the images for print and online. I will, of course, credit you appropriately.



  29. Alice

    What great inspiration…I just love the mantel with the fawn with the blue and silver ornaments. Just stunning. Actually, all of it is stunning. Thanks for the inspiration.

  30. Christine

    Lovely lovely displays! Gosh, I have alot of reading to catch up on! always an inspiration my dear!

  31. Present Past Collection

    I’m just loving all this holiday inspiration! Fantastic posts, all just the icing on the cake. Thanks so much for gathering such a wonderful group of creative gals!

  32. shelbi

    i just love love love this! the sweet little deer, the mossy branches…oooh…inspirational all the way!

  33. cielo

    Wow… that’s expectacular… I love decorating with branches and leaves… all your pictures are lovely

    Have a nice day


  34. Cottage Contessa

    Beautiful photo’s, and Melissa, you have the most gorgeous home! Happy holidays to you.
    Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

  35. Ele

    Love the branch tree. It is so refreshing and it feels so right to bring a little outdoors inside.

  36. Julie

    You know I’m loving those stars, don’t you? Beautiful!!


  37. Polly

    I just love that cement deer! It’s traditional but so unique. And I like the blue with silver. It’s all been so beautiful this week. Melissa, you’re some kind of worker to get everything put together like this. I’m loving it! Oh, and IT finally arrived late this afternoon. I know it’s just a little thing but it’s so exciting to see. Thank you for the encouragment. Blessings… Polly

  38. Lynn

    Enjoyed this post so much. Especially love your dear deer as I have one too and will use it in the decor. Good luck on the opening of your new store. Love the name. Wish I lived close by so I could shop there. ~ Lynn

  39. Pam

    thanks for all the lovely comments everyone! So glad you enjoyed it! Pam

  40. diane

    Her home is beautiful. Thanks for sharing these photos.

  41. Amy

    wow everything you do is beautiful!! I love that deer!

  42. mary

    atmosfere meravigliose!!!ciao

  43. Theresa-Garden Antqs

    I just had to tell you how pretty everything looks and I loved your ideas. Isn’t Wendy Addison’s designs the best!! And…Celebrate Home by Seasons of Cannon Falls is one of my favorite books. Happy Holidays, Theresa-Garden Antqs

  44. Denise Fontaine

    So many natural ideas.I am going to use branches for my tree.I cannot bare to buy cut down trees.Thank You!

  45. Anna

    Gorgeous – I’d love to see you submit this in my ABT Christmas Competitions!!

  46. Riki

    Good deer decoration / thanx for sharing

  47. Country French Antiques

    Absolutely love your decorations.
    Very inspiring and I love the use of vintage.
    Thanks for sharing



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