Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Arts & Crafts - Seasonal Decorating

In our kitchen I have a work area where I do all my kitchen prep, often read magazines or eat lunch sitting there too. We couldn't design the kitchen so that this work area faced into the kitchen so I have my back the 
room when I'm sitting at it. I wanted to pretty it up a bit, so we built it with a little shelf we could put ornaments onto.

On there so far is:

  • an easel frame with some home-made artwork from some old cards I had lurking around on the left-hand side;
  • in the middle a metal & symbol and a couple of empty glass vases (pic to follow!);
  • a speaker dock for my iPod on the right-hand-side.
Its getting there but so far I've been lacking inspiration for the glass vases. I decided that I wanted to use this little arrangement to create a monthly vignette that was either seasonal or relation to a holiday during that month.

Here are some of the ideas I have so far - it is still very much a work in progress and I've failed miserably with doing anything for January as I've not been able to go shopping due to other commitments plus I hurt my back and have been stuck at home.


I wanted a combination of a wintery theme with something Scottish as its Burns Night on 25th January - I wanted a layered effect to look cosy/wintery and thought about grey felt, layered with a grey tartan ribbon on top, tied with string and perhaps with a sprig of heather tucked into the string. The vases would have battery operated tealights inside. I did order some ribbon from The White Company, just not sure whether I can incorporate it or not - but at least now I have a year to figure this out!! This is the picture inspiration for January (from

January - Scottish Theme/Winter. Grey tartan ribbon and grey felt maybe wrapped round vase, secured with twine and maybe a sprig of heather? Alternatively grey check wrapping paper and ribbons from the White Company. Tartan wallpaper sample!!

I didn't want to go all out valentine with red/pink, but I did like the idea of hearts wrapped round the vases. I'm thinking to go with a purple candle in the vase with a heart garland wrapping the outside of the vase. This is the picture inspiration for February (from

February - Valentine's Day. The hearts would go on the outside of the vase (and be more purple coloured theme?) and candles inside.

I know I definitely don't want to go down the green route of St. Patricks Day but I did think something maybe with white four leaf clovers might be an idea. I'm still pondering this one. This is the picture inspiration for March (from

March - St Patricks Day - white 4 leaf clovers instead of the cherry blossom.

I want to fill the vases with bare branches and hang white eggs with purple ribbon onto the branches. From my picture inspiration though I do also like the idea of putting eggs into the vase itself but the vases might be a bit wee for that. This is the picture inspiration for April (from

April - Easter. Vases filled with mini eggs painted in white, silver and purple? Or Kirsty Colquhoun has pinned a spring pic with duckegg blue eggs - would that work?  Or bare branches with mini eggs hanging from ribbons (white eggs/purple ribbons).

For May I think I'll just go with a generic spring summer theme and introduce some flowers to the display to change things up a bit. In other parts of the kitchen we have dark aubergine (eggplant) coloured roses and orchids so for the vases I'm thinking to go white as that is pretty spring-like. This is the picture inspiration for May (from, so I would probably use white tulips, orchids and cherry blossom:

May - Spring/Summer Theme. Use white flowers though instead to match in with kitchen colour scheme. Fresh or artificial? I just remembered Japan's Cherry Blossom Festival (its earlier March/April, but I'm sure they wouldn't mind me borrowing the idea for my May theme!).

As I've gone with a spring summer floral theme for May, June has me a bit stumped - its Father's Day and its our Anniversary in June but so far nothing is inspiring me. I did think something with butterflies might be nice, but its random and not really relevant! There's no picture inspiration for June yet.

I was having real difficulty with all of the summer months as there are no really big holidays celebrated. So, doing a bit of lateral thinking and remembering my love for all things Japanese, I want to do something centred round Tanabata which is the Festival of Wishes celebrated on the 7th day of the 7th month. This is the picture inspiration for July (from I've bought white luggage tag labels from the White Company which I'm going to wrap in handmade paper, tuck a wish into each one and then hang them:

July - Tanabata - Japanese Festival of Wishes (7th July).

We are having our summer holiday in August for the first time ever this year - normally we wait till the schools go back in September. So in honour of this and because I loved the idea from the picture inspiration, I am going to do something with white shells. This is the picture inspiration for August (from girlunderglass,net):

August - beachy theme with sand and white shells. Could I get purple sand?

Usually when we have our holidays it is heading rapidly towards autumn so in honour of that I am going to do something with silvered leaves, white painted acorns (if I can get them) and pinecones), This is the picture inspiration for September (from

September - silvered leaves, white painted acorns & pinecones.

Continuing the autmnal theme but incorporating Hallowe'en too I'll have white pumpkins, pinecones and maybe pussy willow. This is the picture inspiration for October (from

October - Hallowe'en. White mini pumpkins and pinecones (not if using pinecones in another month!).

Heading back into the wintery theme I'm thinking of covering the vases with white cosy jumper sleeves and then trying to have some sort of sparkler/bling to reference that its Bonfire Night in November - I've got some mini sparklers from The White Company to see if I can incorporate this some way - not sure yet. This is the picture inspiration for November (from

Cosy Covered Vases

I loved the snowball garland I found from an inspiration picture, so that is going to be the basis for the December vases. I need to expand on this as I think just the garland on its own will look too insignificant. This is the picture inspiration for December (from

December - Christmas Theme TBC. Either pompon garland (this pic just to show garland - vase would be glass) wrapped around the vases to look like snowballs. Or white painted small wooden snowflakes blu-tacked on (in rows) all round the vases. Vases filled with bare branches with mini hanging baubles or snowflakes (snowflakes only if we go with snowballs outside, otherwise what about sleigh bells?).

I've been busy gather inspiration from around the net and frantically pinning to a couple of my boards on Pinterest - these can be viewed here and here.

I'll post updates showing the monthly theme as and when (and IF) I achieve them - I have a feeling with all the other home priorities we have that for this year, these ideas might just well stay as ideas - but as the vases are currently sitting sad, empty and lonely hopefully that will bother me enough to get on with it!!

If you have any ideas I could use for the vases or you've done anything like this yourself, I would LOVE to hear from you.

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