Wednesday, 17 December 2008 by Irene Hoofs
Stephanie Levy's Advent Wreath and Centrepiece
I started making an advent wreath each year after moving to Europe. In Germany, one candle is lit on each Advent Sunday until Christmas. Traditionally, family and friends gather together to enjoy cookies, cakes, gingerbread, and hot mulled wine or tea by candlelight on each of these Sundays to celebrate the holiday season. The atmosphere of the candles combined with the spicy Christmas delicacies is something special! People create all sorts of advent wreaths in different styles and colors. Feel free to use your imagination! To make this year's advent wreath, I used :
* a purchased wreath of fresh greenery (These are easy to find at florist's shops here in Germany during Advent season, but of course you could make one yourself if you are so inclined.)
* mini glass ornaments, dried orange slices, cinnamon sticks, star anise, red lacquered berries, candle holders, florist's pins, florist's wire, wreath candle holders, and long-lasting handmade Danish candles (All items available at a florist or craft shop.)
* to assemble : First, I added the candles in their holders to the wreath. I wrapped the cinnamon sticks in little bundles with thin florist's wire, as well as the orange slices and star anise to make them easier to attach with the florist's pins. The mini ornaments and red berries were already attached to wire, making them easy to press into the wreath. It is a good idea to place the finished wreath on a large ceramic or metal plate or platter for safety reasons because of the burning candles.
Light a candle, turn on your favorite Christmas music, make your favorite hot beverage, get out the spice cookies or cake, and enjoy :)
To make your holiday table more festive, it is nice to have a centerpiece with candles. These also create a cozy atmosphere in a windowsill or a side table. I have created a more traditional centerpiece and a more modern, glitzy one. Both are fast and simple, and only take a few minutes to assemble.
For the traditional Centerpiece I used:
* 4 red candles in different sizes, a platter covered in gold leaf, mini pine cones, mini red Christmas ornaments, cinnamon sticks, dried orange slices
* Arrange candles and decoration on your platter as you wish, light your candles, and you have instant glow!
* * * Stephanie Levy
* * * Stephanie Levy's blog
* * * Stephanie Levy's shop
Stephanie would like to offer a 20% discount on all prints in her new collection through Dec. 24th to all Bloesem readers. Just write "Bloesem prints" in the message box at checkout, and she will refund the discount.
More lovely Christmas cards this week ... this time from a recelty launched new online shop ... Ginko papers ... out of passion for writing little notes to friends and family and always trying to find the most original cards Garin Hussenjian from Boston decidied to open her own online shop offering you the great and unique postcards, lettersets, stickers, erasers and little gadgets from Japan like the orange bird peeler she herself loves soo much .... Congratulations Garin with your beautiful Ginko papers!
Tuesday, 16 December 2008 by Irene Hoofs
This morning I received an email from Virginia Armstrong. A graphic and textile designer living in London UK, who just opened her online shop called Roddy&Ginger ... here you can find a great selection vintage and mid-century bits and pieces .... and even better some marvelous cushions ... I'm in LOVE with the red one in the right upper corner. Virginia's prints which she uses for tea towels, artwork, cushions and pieces for children's are simply gorgeous! I'm sure we will be seeing much more of Roddy&Ginger in the near future and I'm happy to be able to show Roddy&Ginger to you today!
Elsa+Sam is a place online were I can easily find presents for my friends, family or myself ... I love their selection ceramics and other special pieces from international designers for the table. Elsa from Portland, OR opened this fantastic online dishware boutique, so you could get easily access to the designs from many international artists and Elsa will be adding more and more special products in the near future ... in the image above you can find bowls from Coe & Waito, a bowl from Cul De Sac, an olive dish from Kim Westad and a pitcher from Dovetail.
I love these Deer And Bird Ornaments by Art School Girl which the lovely Kelly from Little Paper Planes told me about. They are letterpresed and die-cut ornaments inspired by vintage tin cookie cutters. Ready to assemble and hang on a tree or a gift with bakers twine. At Little Paper Planes you can also find a terrific Gift Guide, just click here, I'm sure you will find a great present!
Monday, 15 December 2008 by Irene Hoofs
Bastienne's beautiful Christmas tree Garlandes ...
If you prefer a simple Christmas, here are two very graphical ideas.
Make your cupboard a bit festive with this graphical garland of black & white Christmas trees.
Use any kind of wallpaper, cut out the trees and you’re ready.
Use the same mal and draw white trees on black paper to make a simple placemat.
My motto for Christmas is … less decoration, but more candles & nice people together with honest & simply cooked food. Enjoy and happy holidays!
* * * Studio BAS_I.C.
* * * Bastienne van Bockel