Holiday Inspiration: A Friend’s French Country House Decorated for Christmas 2011

As promised,

a few glimpses of my friend’s

merrily decorated home where we

enjoyed a festive juletide evening.

Check out the authentic vintage baby santa suit…

are you dying?

Blurry, I know!

Wish I could capture the painted finish

of this primitive cabinet since

the photos don’t

do it justice.


A peek at the loveliest 14′ tree with ginormous ornaments.

These stars were everywhere

and make me seriously woozy–I love ’em!

My friend’s better half did the millwork

himself, including this mantel…


9 out of 10 bloggers will

type mantle when they mean mantel.

No, it doesn’t drive me MENTAL or even MENTLE.

We aint perfect in the land of blog.)

and the coziest of bars off of the family room.

The vintage Americana throughout

is authentic and gloriously primitive.

Can you see in spite of my sucky photography

how romantic the lighting is?


The tree!

My sis and me.

(She paired a very Kate Spade-ish retro number with gogo boots,

and I found this Banana Republic sequin shift dress I topped with

a Jarbo ballet wrap.

The name of the game here is: COVER UP THOSE FLABBY ARMS


Clearly, dogs were barkin’.

I swear these antique stockings are the sweetest ever.

Yes, that cabinetry on the left

was designed and built by the homeowners…

I told you they were amazing.

And it did not happen overnight!

Years of saving and planning and sacrificing

and executing and working went into the dream.

Here you can view the scale of the tree

and fireplace with a human in the photo.

Obviously we were in party mode,

not photography-for-the-blog mode,

yet the beauty of the night and our friends’

hospitality was so blogworthy I had to share.

Can you feel the love for Christmas

and friends in this stunning atmosphere?

Peace to you right where you are.


will you pray for me tomorrow?
flying to NY, and traveling is
not one of my special talents.



  1. December 18, 2011 / 11:41 pm

    What a magnificent tree and you and your sister are lovely. I had some photography trouble last night, too. Frustrating but yours is fine!

  2. December 19, 2011 / 12:42 am

    that is a seriously tall tree! love the masses of fairy lights.

  3. December 19, 2011 / 12:43 am

    Looks like a wonderful Christmas party!!! Don't you just love this time of year?! It reminds me of the importance of families and friends – what would we do without them!
    It's such a beautiful home and you look so gorgeous as well!!


  4. December 19, 2011 / 1:22 am

    …and from the moment you board the plane until you leave, I will be with you in spirit. Promise! Sending wonderful love and light your way!

  5. December 19, 2011 / 3:51 am

    very cool! i cannot believe how HUGE that tree is…
    great pic of you and your sis!
    oh and the bar at your friend's house looks like an actual bar…like a public one…LOVE it!

  6. December 19, 2011 / 3:58 am

    Your friends did a wonderful job on their very tall tree. Funny it didn't seem that big until the picture with your sister. You two look wonderful too! Don't you just love a Christmas party?

  7. December 19, 2011 / 4:31 am

    Oh lord, all i can think of now is if i would have spelled it mantel or mantle.. except for the part where i'm enchanted by their "The stockings were hung by the chimney with care" sign over the fireplace. I can't believe how big the tree is, and the built in thingy is insane it's so crazy cool.
    It looks like ya'll were having a wonderful time, and i'm still in love with your hands…


  8. December 19, 2011 / 3:25 pm

    Another beautiful post my friend so nice to catch up with again, Oh yes feeling the love over here can't wait for christmas. Sending you and your lovely family special wishes for a very Merry Christmas Day and look forward to keeping in touch in 2012.

    Always Wendy

  9. December 19, 2011 / 4:43 pm

    I can!!!

    Your friend should send that Santa outfit ME way when she gets tired of it. So I can hang it by my MANTEL (:! And enjoy it for years to come.

    What a wonderful home! You captured the mood & atmosphere brilliantly!

    You and sis look stunning in black! I went to a party this weekend and wore brown! (What was I thinking…).



  10. December 19, 2011 / 5:14 pm

    The tree is HUGE! The biggest I've seen inside a home, how wonderful!! Your photos totally convey the lovely warm festive mood and as always, you look stunning my friend!

    Have a great trip to NY!! Lots of festive cheer to soak up, yes?

    Meera xx

  11. December 19, 2011 / 10:35 pm

    I can not get over the SIZE of that tree! Oh my goodness!! I think my perspective has changed living here in the UK with our tiny houses, I forget just how big some homes in the US really are! You've really captured the magical atmosphere in the home through your pics – also, that pic of you and your sis is fabulous. Gorgeous and sassy – I reckon you'd be giving your son's girlfriends a run for their money! *wolf whistles*


  12. December 19, 2011 / 10:38 pm

    PS. I'm not a religious person so instead I'm sending lots of positive thoughts for your flight my dear! xxx

  13. December 20, 2011 / 2:00 am

    What a gorgeous tree and you and your Sister look fabulous!!

  14. December 20, 2011 / 5:10 am

    Oh Michele! You look absolutely stunning. You have a very sweet smile, did I tell you that?

    And that candy stripe red and white baby dress- seriously. So warm, so simple and so so beautiful.

  15. December 20, 2011 / 8:33 pm

    Hello sweetie,

    I'll pray for you… for sure!

    Did you get my email? I hope you did… missing all of your posts…. wish i had more time to continue visiting you and other blogs, but as you know, my life is a bit busier now and w/a bit harder w/ a c-section (hate that!).

    Just want to thank you for everything you did for me this year. It's wonderful to know you… I feel blessed.

    Have a very Merry Christmas, my beautiful Michele.

    Love to you,

    Luciane at

  16. December 21, 2011 / 5:25 am

    First off, yes! I will pray for your safe travels!
    This home is amazing! I am atounded by the size if their entertainment piece. It is gorgeous and completely deceiving as t its size. Until I saw your sister next to it, I did not realize it was so large! Amazing!
    So many pretty things to look at and I love it all too.
    Yes! Let's make a promise to get together in the first two months of the coming year. THAT would be great!

  17. December 24, 2011 / 10:11 am

    Joyeux Noël à toutes et à tous ! Ta maison est splendide et les photos respirent pur bonheur ! Au plaisir !

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