Thursday, December 16, 2010

Balls! And I Urned It

With all that happened in Canada, I lost a couple of holidays. Did Halloween happen this year? I guess I had my own scary Halloween in Calgary.

We had our kids come and visit us in New Orleans around the first of December for a four day weekend. It was the first time they saw us outside the hospital, and I was so proud of them making plans to come and see us sooner than later.

I had to whip the house in shape for them, something I do with all my love. I wanted to get the Christmas decor up, because this time together would be our Christmas together.

But this old vamp is slowing down, so I kind of slacked on the Christmas decorations I usually do, the whole Breakfast At Tiffanys Holly Golightly tree and trimmings HERE and HERE

I dug around in the shed and found a pre-lit tree from years ago that I used in our dance studio The House of Tango. We've been living in our current home for nearly six years, so you can imagine how much I had to dig around in a junk filled shed to find it.

Click on images for larger views~

Visual Vamp Christmas 2010

I dragged a garden urn in from outside, and shoved the tree in it. One reason I like to think this is an "easier" tree to decorate, is that I use huge over size gold balls to trim this tree. So that was that: Big balls and a pre-lit tree in a big ass urn this year! I guess I earned the rights to a slacker's decor this year ha ha.

Cholo says it's all good Mom

I added some gilded garland around a mirror and a gold tinsel wreath to the entrance table near the door, and a pair of square gilded leaf wreaths on the striped doors. I put the tree in front of a tall window in the dance parlor this year. We needed all the room we could get in t he living room, with the family visiting.

It all looks rather old fashion and charming.

Gilded leaf garland on the entry table mirror

I didn't do much in the living room, except for throwing the gilded leaf garland around the big clock, and plopping an emerging Amaryllis plant on the coffee table. I hope it blooms on Christmas day.

Visual Vamp living room
Christmas garland around the big clock

But then I added Cholo! He is always the perfect model and decorative accessory, and he gives me lots of kisses.

Cholo in the living room

I didn't drag out all the big guns this year, but kind of went for stuff that was easy to reach in the cupboards where I store the Christmas decorations. I grabbed the infamous "Eddie Ross" wreath I made last year, which is still a misshapen hot mess, that I force into looking pretty. I hung it on the mirror in the dining room.

Visual Vamp undecorates the dining room for Christmas

Eddie Ross glass ball wreath hangs on the mirror

I added a white lacquer tray that I got at Pier 1 for the holiday bar, and plopped a glitter ornament in a glass. Not much, but just enough. I am learning that restraint can look festive.

Visual Vamp holiday bar tray

A handmade Italian bowl got a collection of vintage ornaments I just scored at a tag sale across the street from our house. Check out the Christmas card Alberto got from The White House!

Christmas card from the Obamas!

Not many people send Christmas cards anymore, so the ones we get are treasured. Photo cards seem to be more popular than ever. I especially love the one with the greeting: Amazeballs! Can you tell me who sent it?

Amazeballs! Some people still send Christmas cards!

The large white Italian ceramic bowl filled with vintage ornaments is on the built-in buffet area in the dining room.

Visual Vamp dining room - built in buffet

I decorated the outside of the house for the kids too. I use the same decorations I have been using since we moved here, including a wreath I made from vintage satin balls.

Vintage satin balls make a pretty wreath

The tree really does look pretty seen through the window from outside of the house.

Peeking through the window at Casa Visual Vamp
A large garden urn holds the Christmas tree

All the neighbors know me for using the ginormous light bulb decoration, and around October they start asking me am I going to put them up again. But of course! I'm on a roll here with big balls, big light bulbs, and a big urn!

Visual Vamp outside Christmas decorations in New Orleans

Maybe Holly Golightly will return next year. Even though the look this year is not as "designed", I kind of like doing something more simple and different.

Do you guys change up your decor from year to year?

Anyhoo, I hope you enjoyed the pared down Visual Vamp holiday look I did.

Wish you were here to have a cup of holiday cheer with Alberto, Cholo, and me!


court. said...

if this is slacking off, i will take it! well done!

Molly Marler said...

Gorgeous!!! WOW!!! Kind of obsessed w your tree/lime chair combo... w adorable Cholo as well! :) I know who sent you the AmAzEbAlLs card... cause I have one, too! :)
Thanks for sharing!

Sketch42 said...

Awww happy holidays hun! I hope you and Alberto have a very merry xmas!

Beadboard UpCountry said...

Hey, Valorie!
The house looks great! You did yourself and the family proud.We've been so busy at the shop I'll consider myself lucky to get the tree down and just have white lights.....So glad you and the whole family are getting together xo Maryanne

Kori said...

Ca n I please have the adorable dog? Kori xoxo

Acanthus and Acorn said...

It gorgeous...I especially love your tree!!! If this is your idea of slacking off, we are all in big trouble and inspired for sure! Wishing you and Alberto good health in the new year and a wonderful holiday at home.

Scribbler said...

Great minds, and all that .....

I pared way down this year, too. Yours look really good, and frankly so do mine. I am not as young as i used to be either. I have decided that there is something to be said for "flying by the seat of your pants" and that sometimes the most creative things happen that way.

So glad you had your family time and your mate is better.

Unknown said...

Love those big balls! Very festive!

MFAMB said...

are you for real?!?
your shit looks amazing (balls). and i know who sent you the card bc i sent it to you.

Gerry said...

You did an amazing job. I'm surprised you had time to do anything at all! Glad to see everything is going well for you now. I also went with a bit of a pared down approach this year and I actually like it better! Was much easier to put out and will be much easier to put away when Christmas is over!

carla fox said...

I think it all looks gorgeous! I chose to go to Seattle to see the Picasso exhibit instead of decorating, so we have nothing done yet. It was worth it, though!

pve design said...

Just today, I hung the garland on the outside railing and found a new wreath in my signature green. JC loved it...and told me how great it looked.
Your place is rocking Christmas. I love the simple touches. Still addressing cards....

Linda in AZ * said...

* Val-gal:

* (1) If yer WRITING n' sounding THIS HAPPY, your dearest must be doing VERY WELL, and for THAT we are ALL thankful!

(2) If THAT'S what you call "just throwing some things out there cuz the kids are coming home", PLEASE ADOPT ME!!! It all looks STUNNING!!!

(3) EVERYTHING looks wonderful and I know if I were there, I would ALSO see a WONDERFUL, GLOWING, STUNNING n' VERY HAPPY n' BLESSED VAMP, and THAT is a WONDERFUL gift for all, from Him!

Lastly, I am in sooooo love with CHOLO... I think my Belle would be too! WHAT A CUUUUUUTIE-PATOOTIE!!!

Again, soooo happy all is going soooo well... (ahhhh, the power of prayer!!!)...

Warmest wishes to you both, my friend,
Linda in AZ *

Anonymous said...

I love your 2010 Christmas look! With all the visual vampiness in your life, you shouldn't confine it to one look every year anyway. It's done, it looks great, now enjoy your family!

Anonymous said...

I love your 2010 Christmas look! With all the visual vampiness in your life, you shouldn't confine it to one look every year anyway. It's done, it looks great, now enjoy your family!

Rebecca said...

Aw, Cholo!

Looks fab, Valorie.

Here's to a Merry Christmas!

Nita Stacy said...

I love the tree with the huge gold balls! I think it's brilliant and I really adore those gigantic lights outside...I can see why your neighbors ask for them. They are fantastic!

Love the wreath on the front door too.

Sue said...

Fabulous job of editing and achieving the perfect balance of Christmas decorating to welcome your family. I did the restrained version of decorating this year too.
Maybe next year we will be ready to do the full Christmas decor treatment, but then again maybe not!

Our Southern Nest said...

I love it all! It looks amazing and I want to curl up in the lime chair beside the tree! Merry Christmas!

Sarah Greenman said...

How gorgeous! I'm in awe. Yes - I like to do something a little different every year. Decorating for the holidays is one of my favorite things. But you have just won the holiday decorations of the year award from ME. Beautiful.

Jay said...

My decor this year? Boxes. We are moving between Christmas and New Years here at It's a great time to purge the excess stuff though.

Unknown said...

Darling, you have the magic touch!

This is all so glorious!
I am glad all is going to be good!

Come on over, I have my first give away! Just in case you need a little distraction....

Sabina said...

Your house looks beautiful, and of course Cholo enhances everything. I love that your neighbors ask for those giant lights outside too. Happy holidays everyone!

Mary Anne Komar said...

Lucky enough to have had 3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Rosie, Ginger and Meg, now all in Heaven. We had all worked hard on our gingerbread house, all put together and massively decked out. The next morning we awoke to Ghetto House, Meg had taken a bite out of each side, and one whole wall!!!! It was to funny to get upset about! Merry Christmas, Mom of 2 wild terriers now!

24 Corners said...

Look who's back...and in a big way! I turn my back for two seconds and there are posts galore to read nice, and so you!

Your holiday decor shows zero sign of any type of slowing down what so's all wonderful and very Christmassy...and your wreath it the best (no, I take that back, Cholo is the best)!
xo J~

Anonymous said...

The decorations look great. I suspect you worked harder than you're willing to tell us. Merry Christmas.

Dina Kucera said...

Seriously.... you are killing me. This is 'slacking off'? Sweet baby Jesus. This year, as we await out new grandson, possibly on Monday or Tuesday, we are having a very laid back Christmas. I mean, we're getting a baby. Can you top a BABY? The new baby has overshadowed this Christmas. Next year will be epic:) Your home looks warm and I can see the love:) Merry Christmas to you and Alberto and all the kids:) Dina (complete slacker)