A very Merry Christmas to you all…..

image via Tiffany & Co

To all who stop by my blog….wishing you a very Happy Holidays and a year ahead filled with blessings! Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts and inspirations …..I do hope your Christmas tree has at least one of these little aqua boxes beneath it!

I will be spending the next few days with my family, counting our blessings for the year just gone and the New Year ahead and indulging in lots of good food , of course!

Deck the halls with boughs of holly….and some baubles too!

I cannot believe that it is only 9 days until Christmas……I love Christmas and who doesn’t love decorating the tree?I have finally unpacked my Christmas decorations and I plan to put up my tree which will be installed  at my sister’s house, where we will be having Christmas lunch. This will have to be done this weekend – my mum is arriving from the UK next week and I need to have it all decorated by then…I am also trying to finish up my painted ceiling project in time for Christmas so that I can at least take a couple of weeks off to spend with my family……so this weekend is going to be really really busy! I have been searching online for some decorating inspiration and there are some spectacular Holiday decorations out there…..look at what I found………

image via french garden house

The charm of simple red and green against white is wonderful….

image source unknown
image via martha stewart living

These wreaths are amazing and the little velvet dress is just perfect!

image via martha stewart living

Somehow Martha always gets it right…

image via southern accents

Chartreuse and turquoise…..what an unusual combination and it works beautifully.

image via traditional home

Glamour and sparkle….it wouldn’t be Festive without candles and flowers..

image via better homes and gardens

How fabulous to come downstairs to these presents on Christmas morning….

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Although this tree looks almost sparse in comparison to the tree above, I love the simplicity and lack of colour.

I actually have never experienced a true white Christmas and even though the Middle East is relatively chilly during December, the chances of snow are minimal to non existent, so I plan to aim for a white Christmas next year…wherever that needs to be…..possibly the UK or the US…who knows? Something to add to my list of New Years Resolutions for 2012. I would love to experience the sights and sounds of Christmas with snow…I am sure it would be incredible and I am so envious of all the lucky people who will be sitting in front of a fire, opening presents while snow falls outside!! Yes, I am sure I would not be quite so convinced once I lived through a snow storm with no power……I have read some of the posts which other bloggers have written about being stranded without power for days and having to dig their way out of their snow covered properties! Probably not so much fun! Maybe a Christmas in the sand is not too bad after all………..as long as you are with family and friends, does it really matter where we celebrate?

Moody paintings….

These moody and ethereal works by Australian artist Min Woo Bang , found via Brabourne Farm blog, are absolutely breathtaking…..I LOVE the soft and dreamy quality of the flowers and although they are smudgy and misty, it is very clear what type of flower they are…the Peonies are my favourite  of course!

all images via here

His technique is unusual and very interesting and makes me want to stop and look deeper into the work…. and the canvasses are all over sized , which I love at the moment! An over sized piece of art really makes a statement on a wall…his website is definitely worth a look!

Outdoor living….

With the wonderfully cool temperatures we are now experiencing in this part of the world, my thoughts have been turning to outdoor rooms….I think that if the weather permits, extending one’s home outside and making use of the extra room is a great idea.

I  love the idea of taking indoor furniture outside to create a separate room entirely….even if only for a special dinner or a party, to sit on a sofa or armchair under the stars makes for a wonderfully original evening!

dinner under the stars (image via sweet home style)

This image above is really inspirational…..the combination of sparkly lights and greenery and crisp white linen is spectacular!

image source unknown

While sourcing products for a project last week, I found a shop selling these  Chinese paper lanterns and I thought it would be wonderful to use them in some way….this would be perfect! Strung alongside the electric lights they look magical…..

image source unknown

This table looks like it may have been set up for a wedding but the individual lanterns are wonderful and the whole idea would be perfect for a dinner party for Christmas or Thanksgiving.

image via garden of simple

I can just imagine the kind of relaxed and casual dinner which is about to happen here….cosy blankets for the chilly night air complete the perfection!

image via marthastewart.com

And don’t forget a waiter to serve you dinner…..I love the lanterns filled with rose petals….

Mannequins and decor………..

I have been toying with the idea of getting a mannequin for quite a while now …. While I would LOVE to get a really battered , old vintage one, the reality is that I am living in a country which is really only 40 years old and the chances of finding anything vintage  is close to impossible, unless you are looking for something regional like carpets, or an old spice chest……I thought I might have to wait until my next trip to the UK to visit my mum….on a really good day you can sometimes find a second hand one in a thrift store…..not often..but sometimes!

I think they are such a lovely feminine addition to a dressing room or bedroom , and fantastic to display a special dress or a statement necklace on – my friend B displays her lovely wedding dress on hers and it looks lovely!

And then I found this site….absolutely gorgeous offerings and they ship worldwide……what more could a girl want? Perhaps just the view in the last image………………….

all images via http://www.corsetlacedmannequins.co.uk

I love the black and white Toile……I can see it in my home! Perhaps an addition to my Christmas list?