Posted by: Alycia Nichols | December 24, 2013

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Progressive Dinner

It’s the night before Christmas, and I’m late getting photos of our 2013 Christmas decor and annual cul-de-sac Progressive Dinner posted! Very little chit-chat tonight. I hope all your stockings are hung and that you are ready to just coast from here on out!
(Click on any photo and then click again to enhance/enlarge it and see details up close.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Cul-de-sac gangEvery Christmas season several of the households on our cul-de-sac get together for a progressive dinner. It’s a chance to get together one last time before the bitter cold of January chases us all indoors, to share good food, and to check out everyone’s holiday decor. I wanted my neighbors to really enjoy the ambience during the entree portion of the dinner at our house, so I got busy!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Front doorI didn’t do a lot with the front entry door this year, nor did we put lights up outside. Next year when I’ve fully recovered, we’ll go all out again! Still, guests were greeted with a cheery wreath with our monogram.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Entry & library

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Library tree collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Secretary collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Vitrine collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas Decor 2013: Library desk, leather chair, side table collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Burlap wreath, wood slices, Swiss Army camping gearOur library, to the immediate right as you enter our home, took on a very rustic look this year. I started the look when teaching my “Art of Tablescaping” class in that room, so after taking the table down I just embellished the existing decor with even more natural elements like huge moss balls on the urns flanking the vitrine, wood slices, whittled pencils, burlap and twine. To see that “Woodland Christmas” tablescape and read more about the design elements, click HERE.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Orchid and pine greenery arrangement with uplightOn the chest at the top of the stairs is an arrangement I created in a mercury glass pilsner vase using faux greenery and orchids with an LED uplight to show it off. Really dramatic look when standing at the foot of the steps!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Entryway arrangement

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Hallway collageBack down the stairs and into the entryway is a decorated wreath over the mirror. Lots of LED candles grace the space beneath the wreath, proclaiming it all to be “Merry & Bright”. Notice the ivory “scrunchie” that covers the electric cord. Very clever way to hide it! (I invested in about a dozen of these in several colors at Hobby Lobby about 10 years ago.)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Dining room

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Dining Room table collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Buffet in dining room

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Tea cartEvery room has a very different theme, and this one is full of bright, cheerful color! I used many of these same elements to create 3 very different tablescapes for my “Art of Tablescaping” class. You can check them out HERE, HERE and HERE. After clearing the tablescapes and adding a few more fun pieces, this room is declared the Fun Zone! I won the wreath at the base of the mirror at a White Elephant party a couple of weeks ago, and it fit right in!

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Dining room tree and into hallwayThe brightly colored tree in the dining room has a Nativity scene beneath it. As we go back into the hallway, the table by the front door is decked out with a fun wreath and a huge LED candle. Let’s head to the living room…

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: View of living room from kitchen

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Progressive Dinner set upWe’ve moved furniture and made space in the living room for our Progressive Dinner tables. This year’s theme in this room is cardinals and reindeer. An additional theme of snowflakes was added for the dinner. The tables are covered with red full-length round tablecloths from LinenTablecloth.com. I recently purchased some ballroom chairs for events at home such as this, and they work out perfectly with cool white Spandex chair covers with contrasting red Spandex sashes, also from LinenTablecloth.com. (I LOVE these because they’re super affordable AND I don’t have to iron them!!!) This is a buffet dinner, so huge white acrylic snowflakes work as “chargers” at each place setting. LinenTablecloth.com red 20″ napkins are neatly folded into reindeer napkin rings purchased on clearance at Target last year. The centerpiece is a simple faux greenery wreath with meandering red ribbon, pine cones and red berries with a trio of LED candles (for safety!) in the center.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Kitchen & buffet collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Christmas Coffee: Black table under breakfast bar collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Christmas Decor 2013: Kitchen wreath

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, Christmas Coffee: Regina Reindeer & kitchen Christmas tree collage

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas Progressive Dinner Decor: Candlestick arrangement in window at kitchen sinkI created this arrangement in the window behind the kitchen sink on a moment’s notice. I wanted something really dramatic for the window that could be seen from outside. I simply entwined a curvy wrought iron candlestick with faux greenery, red berry vine and red lights. I made sure to drape the vine across the countertop for a more dramatic look.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Progressive Dinner guests, I

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Progressive Dinner guests, IIGuests served themselves from a buffet in the kitchen. On the menu: a choice of Chicken Tortilla soup, Chicken & Wild Rice soup, or Chili along with nice, warm bread and iced tea. The fun red & white snowflake soup bowls and mugs are from Dollar Tree (yes…Dollar Tree!), and the snowy white ramekins – for those who preferred a “flight” of soups – are from Pier 1.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Fireplace

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Fireplace & mantel decorThe fireplace mantel is heavily decorated with faux greenery, holly, red berries, pine cones, glass ornaments and cardinals. Reindeer stocking holders (Pier 1 clearance) on each end hold ornate red & gold silk stockings. Small trees in black urns flank the fireplace hearth.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Mice on chair & small tree on hearth collageThese two lovey-dovey mice all dressed up in their Christmas finery are new. I saw them at T.J. Maxx and just fell in love with them. Their names? Ramon & Alycia, of course!!! :-)

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Sofa, reindeer on side table collageWe have lots of black elements in the living room, so I played that up with black velvet pillows behind red silk ones with gossamer gold ribbon. The luxuriously soft throw is from T.J. Maxx. My bold gold reindeer make another appearance this year in different areas of the living room. (To see these reindeer used in other Christmas settings, click HERE and HERE.) On the table behind the sofa, a large red ornament rests above lots of lighted greenery and pine cones.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Living room tree in red & gold

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Tree ornaments

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: Wrapped giftsThis year’s main tree is dressed in lots of red & gold ornaments including cardinals, musical notes, poinsettias and stockings. The tree is flanked by the two larger gold reindeer wearing sparkling wreaths around their necks. Gifts beneath the tree are all wrapped in colors that reflect the room’s color scheme.

Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas: ArmoireThe television armoire across the room always gets a little treat, too. This year the decor mirrors that of the mantel with a huge red ornament (just like the one on the sofa table) rising up like a phoenix from behind.

All very different looks throughout the house. My mind was just going in a million different directions, and I just let the decorative chips fall where they may! :-)

Merry Christmas, everyone!


Responses

  1. Beautiful Decor.wow… Love the festive feel and you have done a wonderful job.Merry Christmas to you and to your family.Best wishes.Love and Hugs…sujatha…:):)

  2. Wow, Alycia! Everything looks so pretty and festive! Wishing you and your family a Very Happy And Blessed Holiday season!

  3. Hi Alycia,

    Everything looks just beautiful and so festive! I’ll be back later to look when I have more time, but I wanted to let you know that I sent you a Jacquie Lawson e-card, and I noticed it hasn’t been viewed. I thought maybe you might need to check your spam mail box or perhaps just your regular e-mail. I hope you see it — let me know!

    Merry Christmas, Alycia!!

    Warm Hugs,

    Denise

  4. Wow–an amazing Christmas display in your home, Alycia! I love it all, and it looks like you and your friends had a great time. I really like the menu that you served–soups are so perfect for this time of year. Merry Christmas!

  5. How beautiful!!! I want to be invited next year. I live on a cul-de-sac – does that count??? I cannot decide which room I like best, but I love so many of your details, like your cord cover and your use of LED lights. I know you were the perfect hostess! Merry Christmas, my friend!!!!

  6. We’ve talked about doing a progressive dinner and I like your idea of serving the soups as the entree. Many moons ago, I hosted soup tasting parties and it was always a bit hit.

    Your home is so pretty and festive! Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas!!

  7. Fabulous job Alycia! You decked the house out beautifully. The new chairs are great with the covers- very fancy! Your soup sounds great and It looks like everyone was treated like royalty! You’re the best at this!
    Hugs and Merry Christmas!

  8. Wow, Alycia! What a dinner! I am so impressed that with the kind of year you’ve had you still managed to pull off something so beautiful! Love the stretchy chair covers! I had never seen them before. I also love your menu. I’ve always wanted to give an All-Soup party! I love soup! Wishing you a blessed Christmas. And peace. Peace on Earth!

  9. Lovely post and what a dinner. Merry Christmas dear friend and a Happy and Healthy 2014!!!

    Cynthia

  10. Fantastic Alycia. You have really knocked yourself out! So many lovely details. The menu sounds wonderful. Love the red and white table. All of the florals are amazing! Merry Christmas to you and your family. May the new year bring you peace, happiness, good heqlth and prosperity….

  11. You’re hired!! My house..next year!!! What a gorgeous home!!!
    Merry Christmas, Love and Hugs, Rene

  12. Merry Christmas to you and your family!!!! I love the warmth and homeiness of the decorations. Just beautiful!!!!

  13. Sweet Alycia -
    I wanna live in your neighborhood! I did a dinner party with three soups right after Thanksgiving and it went over well. I wish you a fabulous Christmas with your precious family and a surgery-free New Year!
    BTW….you and Ramone are really styling there!!!!!
    Linda @ A Toile Tale

  14. so many beautiful photos all your Christmas decoration.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours
    Blessing
    isora

  15. Alycia, Today is Christmas. And a Merry Christmas to you and your family. I just had to pull myself away from our holiday traditions for a little alone time to see your post. This is beautiful as always. Ok, now you mentioned “next year when you are fully recovered” well sister love, If “this” ain’t fully recovered…my lord, I don’t know what is. I can only imagine! This is beautiful. I’m singing Christmas songs as I’m strolling along touring your home. I have lots to study and learn. Thank you so much for your inspiration. Cheers to a wonderful and safe New Year!!!

  16. Merry Christmas! You have wonderful touches everywhere. Love all the wonderful candles and of course the rustic touches of antlers!

  17. You are definitely more “all out” than I ever am even if for you it seems understated! Hey, if your house has no decorations at all I’m betting your neighbors would love to be there to enjoy the warmth you and Ramon project. Nothing beats that.

  18. If this home doesn’t say “happy home” I don’t know what does! It all looks so festive and lively and pretty, Alycia. Please share what your neighbors had to say about it…they must’ve loved it! I hope your Christmas celebrations were merry and bright. Here’s wishing you health and all things good for 2014! ~Zuni

  19. Oh, Alycia! Everything is beautiful! I love the rustic room – the wicker reindeer is wonderful! Those LED candles are beautiful with all your wreaths and Merry and Bright “sign”. Your chairs with the spandex covers and sash are perfect! What a great investment! I’ve never seen those before, but those covers are awesome. I love your red and gold decorated tree, and those reindeer flanking it are so neat! You really went all out, and I enjoyed seeing the elements from previous tablescapes used in different ways. It looks like y’all had a fabulous time, too! You are the hostess with the mostest, my friend. :-)
    Now…on to “Happy New Year”…more partying at your house?

  20. I cannot believe that you did so much decorating with you still recovering from your surgery…you are wonder woman!..and to top it off you hosted a huge dinner party that was so beautifully done in the usual Alycia fashion…over the top gorgeous!…What fun your guests must have had and to have such a magnificent setting all around them was certainly a highlight for the holidays!…Bravo Alycia!!…Happy Holidays!!

  21. What a fun party! I love how you used smaller tables all in the same room, much more fun than guests in multiple rooms, and it looks wonderful with the dramatic red and white! LOVE the snowflake chargers, and your new no iron chair covers! Everything is MERRY & BRIGHT indeed! What a great tradition with your neighbors, we used to do that in my neighborhood and it was so much fun! Happy, Happy New Year!
    Jenna

  22. Alycia, Everything is so beautiful. I love all the traditional colors and the fun ways you used them.Don’t know what I like best but I love the chairs and the stretchy covers. The large reindeer are so cool. I am amazed that you got all this done so soon after surgery but I am glad to see our Sweet Alycia back in form.
    Looks like everyone had a blast and they definitely had plenty of food from which to choose.
    Love ya girl,
    Ginger

  23. Love seeing your friends at your beautifully decorated home. You did a lot of decorating. What a festive party for your friends. I love your snowflake theme on your tables. You must have bought the dollar store out. I know guests love to be invited to your home for a dinner party.Your menu sounds perfect.

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