Categotry Archives: A Mid-Century Modern Christmas

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Decorating with Pyrex

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Categories: A Mid-Century Modern Christmas, Christmas Open House, Pyrex

As you may know, I designed a series of 12 Christmas ornaments this year with a mid-century theme and titled the series A Mid-Century Modern Christmas.  Part of the fun of designing ornaments is knowing that you now have 12 new ornaments with which to decorate.  This past spring, we bought an aluminum Christmas tree to use as a photographic prop.  After seeing it set up, I really wanted to use it in our Christmas decorations.  However, there is currently no room in the house.  We have plans to convert our breezeway into a library and that would be a good place for it but not until next year.  So….what to do with my ornaments??  I still wanted to decorate with them in a way that had that mid-century feel.  Thus began the wheel-turning in my mind.

I collect Pyrex dishes of all kinds and colors.  Several years ago, my husband arranged them for me on top of our kitchen cabinets.  He grouped them by color and even put plastic containers inside the nesting bowls so each would be seen, rather than disappearing inside one another.  As I was thinking of where to put my mid-century ornaments, the Pyrex collection came to mind.  I took the branches from the aluminum tree and placed them on the cabinets in front of the Pyrex and then I nestled the ornaments all around.

It’s hard to take overall shots of something that is so spread out but here are a few to give you an idea of how it looks…

mid-century ornaments and Pyrexmid-century ornaments and Pyrexmid-century ornaments and Pyrexmid-century ornaments and Pyrex

mid-century modern ornaments and Pyrex

How have you used your decorating smarts in a creative way?  I would love to know!

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New Ornament Releases

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Categories: A Mid-Century Modern Christmas, Christmas, cross stitch, new releases

Hello to you all!  The last four ornaments in my series, A Mid-Century Modern Christmas, will be released tomorrow.  Thanks again to my darling sister Valerie for her beautiful finishing work.  I loved designing this series and am looking forward to doing another Christmas ornament series sometime in the future.

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas

Christmas Tree

Christmas Tree

Noel

Noel

For this last ornament, I was inspired by the scene in A Charlie Brown Christmas, where Linus and Charlie Brown go to the tree lot to pick out their tree.  We all know that Lucy wanted Charlie Brown to get “the biggest aluminum tree” he “could find, maybe painted pink!” and Charlie Brown certainly had plenty of options.  Even though he ended up choosing a real tree, I was always intrigued by the scene of the crazy Christmas tree lot and all the modern trees and their colors.  It was 1965 and as Linus said, the trees on that lot “fit the modern spirit”….that modern spirit being what we now call mid-century modern.  Here’s the last ornament, Tree Lot.

Tree Lot

And here is the whole kit and caboodle!

A Mid-Century Modern Christmas

I’m looking forward to Christmas so I can decorate with these ornaments.  Still figuring out where to put the aluminum Christmas tree…

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A Mid-Century Modern Christmas

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Categories: A Mid-Century Modern Christmas, Christmas, cross stitch

Good morning! The big day has finally arrived! This is the first time I’ve designed an entire series of ornaments so I’m very excited about it. As you know, the theme is A Mid-Century Modern Christmas. There is something about that time that feels very nostalgic, even if you never lived through it. It was a peaceful decade after the incredible turmoil of World War II, a time when Baby Boomers were growing up and things were prosperous in our nation.

It was the day after Christmas last year when I got the idea for a series of ornaments with a 1950s feel to them. Right away, I sat down at the computer, opened my designing software and a few hours later, the first ornament was born. Over the next few months, the ornament designs grew until I had a collection of them. They were all stitched and ready for finishing by April. Now the big problem…what to do about finishing? I had already finished Crow On Snow a few months back and it was much easier than I thought, thanks to Vonna Pfeiffer’s tutorials. However, there are 12 pieces in this series and the thought of finishing that many ornaments was a little overwhelming to me, especially considering I knew I wanted some of them finished as little pillows and sadly, sewing is something I know little about. I immediately thought of my youngest sister, Valerie, who is a quilter and has done cross stitch and loves embroidery. I knew she was much more handy with a sewing machine than I and I know she is very creative in her crafting. I approached her with the task of finishing my ornaments…she had never done work like this before but she accepted the job. I’m afraid I was probably not very good at communicating what I wanted – I just spoke in general terms of what I thought I wanted the ornaments to look like. I did give her some trims, from Dames of the Needle (I love her hand-dyed trims) and amazingly enough, we also found some rick-rack that was our grandmother’s, still in the package, probably from around the mid-century period. Val was able to use that as well which I think is wonderful…keeping it authentic.

rick rack

In June, I received a package in the mail from Val and to say I was completely delighted with how the ornaments turned out is an understatement. She did an absolutely amazing job finishing them and I was more than thrilled with them. As long as she is willing, I think I have a finisher for future projects. I love her very much and am so proud of her work and her willingness to help me succeed in this project of mine.

I’d also like to thank Lisa Smith, of The Village Stitchery Shop, who got a sneak peek of all the ornaments back in April and was so encouraging to me.  She even pointed me in the right direction to an antiques mall where I found a silver aluminum Christmas tree, to use as a prop for my ornaments.

The first four ornaments will be released this Friday, with the next four following at the end of September and the last four at the end of October.

May I present, the first four ornaments in A Mid-Century Modern Christmas, in order…Aluminum Tree, Bell, Greetings and Ho Ho Ho.

Aluminum TreeBellGreetings Ho Ho Ho