Friday, November 12, 2010

Paperwhites – Step Number One in My Holiday Preparations

Creative Home / Photographer – Michael Partenio
Stylist - Donna Talley, Regional Editor and Producer for Meredith Publications
 


The official start of the holiday season begins for me when I plant my paperwhites. I head to my local garden center where the bulbs can be purchased individually instead of pre-packaged. They are less expensive this way and I can choose the best ones. It seems every year I buy more bulbs than the previous year. I guess I just can’t seem to get enough of these pretty white flowers during the holidays!

You may remember last year I wrote about one of my favorite holiday hostess gifts – a single paperwhite in a vintage tea cup. This year I did more of the same as well as add some new pots to my repertoire for my own house.


For several months I have been collecting milk glass vessels in a variety of shapes and sizes. Each one cost between twenty-nine and ninety-nine cents. Many of these will undoubtedly end up in the hands of friends as well.


At the moment the containers are all housed on my kitchen table. I am always amazed at how even the simplest items become more important and beautiful when placed together. Although I do love how this grouping looks, I am sure they will be moved once I begin decorating in earnest.


You may also have noticed I have mixed in some simple baby tear plants with the paperwhites. My only holiday decorating plan this year is to simplify and use natural elements. We’ll see how it all turns out!


So, how do you begin your holiday decorating? Is there a tradition in your family which signals the beginning of the holidays?

Linking to a few of my favorite parties HERE

20 comments:

Get Your Martha On said...

I planted paperwhites this week, too! I've never done this before, so here's hoping ...

Love all your containers, as well.

Boxwood Terrace said...

Paperwhites signal the start of the holiday season for me too. I always receive paperwhites from a particular friend and enjoy watching them bloom. Yours will be beautiful in the milk glass. Great idea!
Deborah

Janet said...

I also planted paperwhites this week. Do you have any tricks to keep them shorter or to keep them from flopping? I always think they are going to be fine nd then one morning I come down to find them "flopped". But, Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without them.

Annie Louise said...

Thanks for the inspiration--I think I will give growing paperwhites a try. Love your groupings.
Jeanette

Andrea said...

I love planting paper whites and hyacinths. I saw a picture of paper whites planted in a pewter urn, and topped with pinecones. That's what I plan to try this year.

Linda in AZ * said...

* LOVE your blog~~~ what a great read! I'm so glad I could sign up for E mail notification of when you post something new...

I, too, do paperwhites every year... (LOVE that more "natural" look about them!!!)...... MAYbe you can answer a question that even FLORISTS won't either GIVE me the answer to, or don't KNOW that answer to (which I DOUBT!)... CAN they be "planted" TOTALLY WITHOUT SOIL, and just a small layer of rock instead???

I would LOVE to know if you've tried it and if so, has it worked???

MANY THANKS!!! I'm a new "follower" of your blog, but hope you can take a minute to answer me by E-mail if you have a minute~ I'd sure appreciate it!!!

Again, terriffic blog and THANK YOU!
Linda in AZ *
bellesmom1234@comcast.net

Jane said...

You have just given me an idea...
I have never planted paperwhites.
Seeing your white containers, I am pulling out the milk glass from Great Aunt Peg and planting them in the morning. Thanks for the inspiration!
Jane (artfully graced)

Red Door Home said...

Yes - paperwhites can be planted in just rocks. This is what I have always done and have had great luck with them. To keep them from growing too tall, I have read you can add alcohol to the water in a 10 to 1 ratio. (ten parts water to one part alcohol)

Paula said...

Paperwhites are definitely one of my annual holiday traditions. I need to get started on this for this year.

I'm interested in the alcohol tip, I'll have to try that.

Living It At Home said...

This is great inspiration and a wonderful idea! You made this project look really easy and simple! I am definately putting this one on my Christmas to-do list!

Thanks!

Jamilyn

Kathy said...

I really like the idea of you doing your step by step decorating -and that you are trying to keep it natural -But I have a question -I have never planted paperwhites -so if I plant them this week-end they really will bloom by christmas? -do I add any miracle grow to the water? Any other hints ?
Thanks so much

Kathy said...

I just found your post on how to plant the paperwhites from last year -you are so right what a great hostress gift

Jane, Naples, Florida said...

I am going out to try and find some
paperwhites! They are my favorite
and this is a wonderful idea! Thank
you for sharing... I am inspired.
Love the idea of the teacups also!

Jane
Flora Doora

Carol@SofasandSage.com said...

I really like the white container idea. Super clever, inexpensive and great looking. I would love to receive one. I confess I'll be stealing this idea!

Between You and Me said...

so glad you stopped by my blog...gave me a chance to come over and meet you!

Love your blog and your style...enjoying browsing through your archives!!!

Sixty-Fifth Avenue said...

Beautiful table display! I too plant them and this is my first year giving them away in a pretty pot for a teachers gift.

My Notting Hill said...

Great reminder - I need to do this this weekend!

mydesignchic said...

I adore the simple elegance of paperwhites, and the scent...heavenly ~

Laurel @ Ducks in a Row said...

I do these every year - but last year my husband informed me that he really really didn't like the smell of paperwhites. so no paperwhites this year for us - boo!

The French Maid said...

Love these...paperwhites have always been a favorite!
New follower here!
--Lee Ann

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