Sunday, December 14, 2014

Church Street Christmas

There is no question of a white Christmas this year as December has already delivered quite a bit of snow to Vermont. It is a beautiful start to winter and we are looking forward to celebrating at home.

In keeping with my general aesthetic, holiday decorating at Church Street leans toward the minimalist but this year I wanted to make a change from the traditional color scheme. The blue was inspired by some Swedish Dala horses I found online. Our travels through Northern Europe last summer only intensified my interest in Scandinavian culture.

I love to set a beautiful table though never want it to feel too formal. This mix of our wedding silver with pottery handmade in Vermont and linens from Ballard Designs sums up my personal style in a nutshell.

I'm not one for New Year's resolutions; I tend to act when the idea strikes. In November I met a photographer who inspired me to give up my 26-year coffee addiction - impressive because of a previous failed attempt in 2011 that I long referred to as the worst four days of my life. I am now going on week five so here's to perseverance.

A departure from the usual Christmas crackers, this year I will be offering these 'fortunes' found at Anthropologie with dessert - something fun to ponder as we consider what lies ahead.

To all my readers, many thanks for your visits to Henhurst and all best wishes for the new year!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Blue Christmas

My love of all things Scandinavian goes into overdrive as the holidays approach and the icy winter wonderland outside my window has me thinking blue and white for this year's holiday decor. It began with my ordering a version of this Advent candle wreath from The Linnet's Wing on Etsy. Following is further inspiration and as I am linking up to the Blue and White Bash at The Pink Pagoda today, please click over and see who else is sharing the love. Thank you, Jennifer, for organizing!




We traditionally start decorating the weekend after my daughter's birthday which falls on December 4th. It is going to be a great weekend!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

London Calls Again

Following my trip to Washington I was home for less than 48 hours before leaving for London to visit my sister, Irene. I wouldn't normally plan travel like that, but Irene asked me late last summer if I would come over to help her make some decorating decisions and this was the window that worked for us both. We only see each other a few times a year and I relish the days we get to spend together.

We were blessed with good weather and a few bright and sunny, un-London-like days. (In Hyde Park near the sunken garden pond.)

A few hours were devoted to visiting the Chelsea Harbour Design Centre where I always stop in at Nordic Style to admire their displays.

Irene is an art historian (on account of her Ph.D. she is actually Dr. Irene) so a visit to The National Gallery to see the current Rembrandt exhibit was required. I was a little fixated on the architecture which almost rivals the collection.

We spent the weekend in Wiltshire enjoying long walks in the countryside. Evidently the literary agent for one of my favorite (deceased) English authors lives here.

Back in London I did what I could to help with the children's routine as Irene needed to finish some writing. I love doing the school run - the English uniforms kill me and my niece, if you could hear the way she calls me 'Aunt Philly' - well, I can be counted on to indulge things Mummy does not allow.

On my last day I spent some time before school pick-up exploring Notting Hill where some streets have a distinctly bohemian feel very different from other London neighborhoods. And Portobello Road is a lot of fun for both the antique shops and the boutiques.

Irene (below with Spaniel pup Lily) is eight years younger than I am. At dinner one night she mentioned to our companion that when she was two-years-old I saved her from drowning in our swimming pool. While it is not something I've thought about in a long time, it is my most vivid childhood memory. My movements leading up to and following the incident play like a movie in my head. It was no less than a miracle I showed up at the moment I did and for much of my young life I felt acutely responsible for her. Now firmly in middle age, however, it seems roles are reversing and Irene has begun to feel responsible for my well-being because whenever we are together in London she drags me to her gym (admittedly very luxurious and spa-like) and insists I drink green juices.

I want to tell you - probably because another birthday is fast approaching - that despite the age difference and the fact that, given a choice, I would always take wine over kale juice, we were mistaken for twins more than once.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Dumbarton Oaks

My daughter and I traveled to Washington, DC last weekend, partly for business but mostly for pleasure. We had beautiful weather, stopped into all my old haunts in Georgetown, saw friends, ate well and laughed a lot. It was a perfect escape. Following are a few photos from the enchanted garden at Dumbarton Oaks.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Seize The Week

Most people probably think of Spring as a time of rebirth, but personally fall has always felt like the season for beginning again and starting new projects. This morning the cold weather I've been eagerly anticipating has finally arrived and I am ready to put plans into action.

A few things have been percolating here and the first to go live is that Henhurst has recently opened an Etsy shop. Please click over and have a look.

Interestingly enough, fall is my busiest time for decorating work; most new clients reach out to me in September and October. Maybe it is the climate here that inspires that desire; after all, nature herself is redecorating as well.

Wishing everyone a productive week ahead.