I take inspiration wherever I can get it, and sometimes I get inspiration at the most unexpected places. But it’s no surprise that most of my inspiration this holiday season, came from NYC.
There is nothing like New York City at Christmas time. The decorations are over the top, and the energy is palpable. The big department stores have it down. Their window displays are gorgeous, and I can stand there for hours and take note of every detail.
Lord & Taylor has a detail that I love, and they bring out this one decorating feature every Christmas season that I have admired year after year. The awnings over each window are covered in an evergreen and lights blanket. Sounds simple enough, yet it is so very elegant. And the look screams Christmas!
I wanted to bring this look to our home. I thought, if I could recreate this look on our foyer ceiling, what a huge statement that would be. And it would look gorgeous. And welcoming.
I put a lot of thought into how I would accomplish this idea. Something with this kind of punch still needed to be cost effective. So last year, a few days after Christmas, I visited a huge craft store and took advantage of their 80% off Christmas items sale. I bought enough greenery to cover the ceiling in the foyer, with a couple extra strands of garland to have on stand by.
Then I collected random chicken wire from various projects. This would be the base for my evergreen blankets. All this stuff hung out in our attic until just a couple weeks ago. When it was time to design and conquer, I set up tables in the living room and started attaching the garland to the chicken wire. I used these garden ties to attach the garland and keep it secure.
I felt like it took forever to fluff and attach the garland. But I got it done. Then it came time to attach the lights. I used green-corded icicle lights mainly because that is what I had on hand. I laid each strand down flat and evenly placed the lights on the greenery. I nipped and I tucked the cords within the garlands, and that was really the easiest part of the project.
The most difficult part: Hanging the blankets on the ceiling. To borrow a phrase from my friend Nellie, I never realized how much I missed dry wall until I had to deal with plaster. Pulling out the handy staple gun again, and using a broom to hold an end up to make attaching easier, We started stapling. And we stapled. And stapled. And stapled. And clearly we have some repair work to do in January, but hey, future blog post.
One blanket up. Then the next one went up. Then we filled in the gaps, attaching the garland directly on to the ceiling. Added some more lights. And it was time to plug in to see how it looked.
And all I can say, is Fierce!! This project turned out exactly how I pictured in my mind. I am so happy. It looks so welcoming, and so Christmas-y. And I brought a little Lord & Taylor into our house.
This is exactly the warm holiday welcome that I have dreamed of for a long time. I might just be keeping it up until spring..