Our very talented friend and interior designer Mona Thompson of Providence Ltd. Interior Design continues to charm us with her casual elegance. (We featured her home on the cover of our November issue.) And her holiday style is just as we imagined: beautiful yet cozy. Below she shares a few design ideas, plus tips on hosting a holiday get-together and a delicious recipe to warm up a Sunday dinner party. All you have to do is add friends and family.
PS- Donât forget to leave a comment for a chance to win a year-long subscription to At Home in Arkansas magazine! Click here for details, and to see our month-long Holiday Guest Blogger Series schedule.
It doesn’t matter if you are dreaming of a White Christmas or longing for more traditional season colors to decorate your home, our Holiday Designs are always inspired by nature.
This table setting was featured in House Beautiful last year and is Drama Plus. The masses of white flowers artfully arranged in the carved out Birch is amazing. Actually this is a very simple idea that could be achieved using a variety of materials for a very different look.
Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snowâ¦If only it would, I’d hunker down somewhere in this house and never leave. Lisa Luby Ryan of Dallas is one of our very favorite designers. Her shop is a must see when in Dallas. You can visit her here.
Obviously this entire home is drop dead gorgeous, but notice the small details in the holiday decorations that make it extra special. Many would not be that hard to incorporate somewhere in your own home, such as the jar attached to a tree limb with wire and filled with water and fresh flowers. How fun would this be to do for a special party?Â It wouldn’t have to be an entire tree either. You could add these to a wreath or garland.
Another example of a similar idea. I added these rustic wire lanterns filled with battery operated wax candles I found at Park Hill Home into my tree this year. They cast a magical glow along with the tiny white lights at night. You cannot tell that they are not real.
Entrances are very important. Simple but welcoming is the very best.
Tablescapes are always a challenge. Your mantels and tree may not change much from year to year but it’s always fun to come up with something different for the table.
I opted to mix boxwood, pinecones and berries in my dining room this year.Â I plan to get creative with these wire napkin holders fromÂ Our Shop.
We usually host several small gatherings during the holiday season.Â I can attach a placecard or a small gift similar to the ornament shown here.
For larger gatherings, we normally choose to do a buffet setting rather than seated dinner.Â Guests always seem to enjoy this.
Speaking of Entertaining, for those of you who follow us, you’re alreadyÂ familiar with our Sunday Suppers.Â I’m sure we’ll do some Sunday holiday entertaining this year. Those dinners are always cozy and casual. A hearty soup is always a crowd pleaser, so we’ll try this recipe for Loaded Baked Potato Soup from my friend Yvonne over at Stone Gable. She tests, and retests, every recipe and they are always delicious.
STONEGABLE LOADED BAKED POTATO SOUP
10 baking potatoes
2/3 cup butter
3 ribs celery, diced
2/3Â cup grated carrots
8 green onions, sliced (use green parts too)
1 cup flour
12 cups milk
2 lbs thick sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
3-4 cups extra sharp cheddar cheese (I use 4)
16 oz. plain Greek yogurt
freshly grated nutmeg, a couple of good grates~ dash
6 hard boiled eggs, cooled, peeled and chopped in medium pieces
Bake potatoes. Cool, peel and cut into medium size chunks.
In a large stock pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add celery and carrotsÂ and sautÃ© until softened, about 5 minutes. Add green onions and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.
Add 1 cup of flour and stir. Cook and stir for 4 minutes. Add milk and whisk. Cook, stirring occasionallyÂ until it bubbles. Watch the pot so you do not scorch the milk. Add potatoes and bacon. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Add cheese, Greek yogurt, salt, pepper and nutmeg. When cheese melts and Greek yogurt is incorporated add hard boiled eggs. If the soup is too thick more milk can be added. We love it thick!!!!!
Garnish and serve.
Whatever your plans for decorating and entertaining this Holiday Season, I wish you the very best.Â As long as you include plenty of family and friends, whatever you do will be a huge success.