Creative Inspirations, Creative Projects

Decking the halls and the walls and the tiniest of places. PART ONE: The Keeping Room.

This year has been the year of birds in our household. David placed some of his charcoal-burnt-out bowls into my garden obliques to hold bird seeds. And what started as one small feeder has turned into many multi-stationed towers creating a live museum with birds of all sorts and a near full-time job for him.

It is amazing how they seem know us. As we walk out the door they stay put and just chatter at us. It is truly a blessing.

The room just inside the back door where “the museum” spreads out is our fireplace room. It’s where we start each day with coffee watching the birds. It made sense this year to give a nod to our feathered friends with the room’s decor. Enjoy the decorations this year in our Keeping Room.

This wall is always a focal point; its what you see when you walk into the room. This is year I hung the same painting I did last year for the season as a good back drop to our collection of antique shore birds. You may remember from past years where they lived in the living room.

The tree is decorated with a variety of birds from my collection of bird ornaments. My grandmother collected them too–of that gorgeous german glass sort–and when my mother passed away the collection was mistakenly placed in a box for the yard sale and the antique collector swooped in on them. My sister and I were heart broken so ever since we have collected contemporary versions to sooth our souls.

We have bluejay frenzies outside this room in the “museum”!

Fireplace mantles always look better when there is an element of asymmetry included. My painting is centered, the candles are equidistant from each other and in equal sets. The greenery sprigs are placed equally from side to side but by tilting one up and one down it adds interest. The birds are not the same side to side also.

My grandparents collected these clay birds on their travels through Mexico. They are whistles of graduating sizes and therefore graduating tones. They are usually in an upstairs room but they needed to live down here for the season.

David’s latest folk art painting made it into the room for the season. How apropos.

A sideboard with an under-storage wine rack sits in the room near the entrance to the kitchen. So, my little cast iron stove from childhood sits on it, a segue to all things kitcheny. Last year I created a mini tree to mimic what was in the kitchen and this year (even tho it wasn’t birds) I fashioned a basket with mini books, just what is in the kitchen this year (stay tuned for the next post). The basket is made from one of the clay pots that survived the Paradise, CA fire in my sisters home. Cut paper strips mimic the handle.

How to make mini-books

  1. Scan a book cover on a flat-bed scanner and save the image in 300 dpi.
  2. Place the completed jpeg into a word document and size the image to the finished book size you want. NOTE: in MAC you need to convert the page document to Page Layout. This allows you to move the images around the page.
  3. Place the images to the right of the page.
  4. Print the page on good paper.
  5. Cut a strip containing the book image exactly the same size.
  6. Z-fold the strip back and forth behind the image until you have a finished “book”.

Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment. Happy holidays!

12 thoughts on “Decking the halls and the walls and the tiniest of places. PART ONE: The Keeping Room.”

  1. What a treat to read through your first episode! You and David have such eyes for color, subject matters, accompaniments and light! Will eagerly wait for next installment!

  2. Hi Jane, I loved reading this; you continue to inspire me! I have lovely memories of living in Canterbury, and of being in your beautiful home. Happiest of holidays to you and David. Susan xoxo

    1. Hello to you in Maine! I am so pleased you loved reading this…one never knows if what they think is great will appeal to others. I can still see your smiling face here…sending you all the best this season. ox

  3. You and David are well suited to have a house “museum”! I enjoyed reading this very much (purposely, instead of my e newspaper) as I sip a hot cocoa this morning. Comfort and Joy!

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