Thursday, December 10, 2009

danger garden Christmas

This year we decided it was going to be a semi-tropical Christmas at our house. Just because we don’t live in a warm climate doesn’t mean we can’t pretend, and when better than Christmas to pretend right? Usually the centerpiece of our holiday décor is my vintage silver aluminum Christmas tree. But this year…we have a Christmas Tree Fern! (ok not quite "tree" yet, but least that's what the tag promised)All my ornaments are vintage; I love the colors, the patina and the metal “hardware.”They’ve been collected over the years at thrift and antique shops. Every year I manage to break at least one of them, so the supply is dwindling. Instead of the traditional Christmas Poinsettia we have a Christmas Bromeliad, and since I haven’t got around to wrapping any gifts yet, Tanuki joined in the holiday display.
You don’t know about Tanuki? He’s a Japanese folk character, rumored to be both mischievous and jolly, but also somewhat gullible and absent-minded. He’s always wearing a hat, carrying a bottle of Saki, and has a large belly and disproportionately large testicles. Andrew purchased this Tanuki at the Togo Shrine flea market, when he lived in Japan. The thing about Tanuki is that when you see him outside a building you know their serving booze inside.
While our clear skies have contributed to the extreme cold temperatures they are also bringing bright beautiful sunny days. Some of my tender potted plants are enjoying the sun-drenched living room, and its warm temperatures. I guess it is obvious we haven’t been using our gas fireplace too much…
And instead of evergreen swags or pine boughs we have Papyrus stalks in a vase. At least inside the house I can pretend we live in a warmer climate. How are you decorating for the holidays?


  1. You're way ahead of me. Maybe this weekend. Thanks for leading the way. Your take on Christmas is inspiring.

  2. Tanuki - I must find one !
    It will go well with my tengu, which has an overly endowed penis shaped nose. The two would make a lively pair !
    Your fireplace mantle is beautifully table-scaped!
    And the tree fern holiday tree is tropically festive.
    PS. Loree, I'm putting my order through with San Marcos. Still want your goodies. I'll have to double their availabilty list again with your wish list , but glancing at it I can see that Agave Joe Hoak is not on the list.
    Actually it is looking like slim pickens.
    If you go onto their website and click on December availability you'll see what they have.
    I had a hard time with the list appearing last week so I had them fax their list over to me.
    Their website seems to be having some difficulties .


  3. Your christmas decor (and home decor in general) makes me extremely jealous!

  4. Now this is truly inspirational! Absolutely brilliant..... maybe the start of a west coast trend where holiday decorating is concerned. Very nice!

  5. Beautiful and hip decor! I like it, and I also like getting a glimpse of your home. Love your painted fireplace---what material did you paint on the surround? Seeing your framed cactus picture I really get the sense that you should be living in a warmer climate. ;-)

  6. Oh, I was about to think I needed to get a Tanuki for my daughter but maybe not... cute, but a little weird for kids perhaps, between the booze and the balls. Your house looks like a magazine shoot, and I mean that in a good way! Here we just shove aside our usual clutter and put some more clutter out. Some is passed down from family, other stuff we just have accumulated. It is pretty traditional - cedar garland for the mantelpiece, holly sprigs from my mom, wreath out front, etc. I dig the tropical Xmas, good for you! And the tree fern "tree" is a stroke of genius.

  7. Hi Loree~~ You've got really good taste. Your plants look pristine and well loved. I like your vintage colors. I made the erroneous decision to leave my tree fern [one year old] outside for the first cold night. It's indoors now and my fingers are crossed but it's definitely suffered a setback. ... Tanuki is a new one on me. Cute, in a devious sort of way.

  8. Christmas tree fern! Hilarious!
    I am decorating by...doing nothing so far. It's time to get on it, or it's going to be too late. I have a vintage bulb collection, but I also got a bunch of glittery black ornaments this year, thinking they would go great on that pink tree I still haven't bought.

  9. ricki, hopefully you'll post a few pictures of your holiday decorations, when you get them hurry...

    DD Michelle, thank you! I responded to your email, hopefully you got it? I want to go for the one plant they do have...I think it will be fine in shipping. Good luck tracking down a Tanuki of your own.

    d+n, don't be silly...YOUR tree rocks!

    Thanks Teza, I never thought of starting a trend, I thought most folks would think I was rather batty for taking this approach.

    Pam, thanks! The surround was painted white when we moved in, unfortunately. I wish it had been left the natural wood. There was too much white so I painted the green. The burgundy inside that, around the firebox, is the original tile. I love it, very cool. A couple of our neighbors have the same tile, and the house we rented when we first moved to Portland had virtually the same fireplace with natural wood and black tile, it was sexy!

    Karen, the kids do love Tanuki, and don't seem to notice the "features" the adults do. Thank you for the kind words. I have a friend who insists we need to be in Sunset, ha! Maybe someday, you should see the rest of the house...needs some TLC.

    Thanks Grace, the Tree Fern was luckily in before the cold hit, only because of using it as the tree. Otherwise it would have been outside like yours.

    Megan, black ornaments on your pink tree would be so cool! Are you old enough to know Pinky Tuscadaro (sp?) from Happy Days? Reminds me of her...only a cooler version.


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