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Bird in a Gilded Cage!

Years ago, I had the pleasure of presenting Holiday decorating workshops
at 'Girlfriend's Weekend' events in a gorgeous lodge, located in the wine country near Seattle.
 At each annual event, I created several vignettes...

[okay, I must digress here for a moment...
as I was typing the word 'vignette', I typed 'Viognette'.
If you know wine, you are smiling right now!  
I may have just coined a phrase there....]

back to our story...
vignettes to illustrate inspiring Holiday decor ideas and themes.
This 'Bird in a Gilded Cage' theme was one of them.
Since Gold is once again a hot decor trend, this is a perfect opportunity to share it!
I began with the hydrangeas...
Found in my own yard, they had aged to soft green and tan hues.
When I popped them into a gold metal cachepot that I had on hand, the theme came together:

greens, tans & browns, copper, and gold
with natural elements from the garden
and the nest I had nearby inspired me to incorporate birds...

The tabletop elements above include:
*a ceramic sculpture that looks like wood with two birds - it holds the real nest and twigs.

*a gold damask stripe tablecloth and green embroidered placemats with a leaf motif.
*gold charger plates, paired with a white china plate and a transparent amber glass dessert plate. 
*A vintage bar glass has green and gold embellishment.
*gold flatware

continue reading for more details...

incorporating a birdcage into the decor theme was a given...
this one was found at the thrift store but it was black.
so I painted it dark brown and then rubbed gold paint into it for an aged finish.

inside the cage, there is a faux greenery wreath,
embellished with trailing gold sheer ribbon and some glass ornaments.
inside the wreath are pillar candles, in a perfectly safe location!
a few special vintage glass ornaments hang above, from the bird perch.
I love decorating trees with large-scale elements...

*the green 'ribbon' you see here is actually swaths of sheer fabric @ 18" wide.
I also used sheer gold ribbon with a swirling leaf pattern.

TOP TIP from Deb:
the thing about using fabric and ribbon on trees is this: it has to look FLUID.
when you are placing it, make it dip and swirl and flow through the branches, like water would... 
go in and out, move at an angle down the tree as you add it for an elegant, abundant look.
wrapping ribbon in straight rows around the outer edges of a tree 
just makes your tree look short and stubby!

and now, a secret that may make you look closer at this photo:
that sheer gold ribbon came from the Dollar Tree store!
it's really cheap stuff - no wired edges or anything.
but mixed in with the green fabric and the gold foil cones, it adds sparkle 
and looks like a million bucks!

 * I also tucked large hydrangea blooms into the branches, inside gold paper cones.
those cones are made using the method that I shared HERE last Spring.
TIP: spray your hydrangeas with a shot of hairspray, and they won't shed!

* the sweet birdhouses are simply made of vintage sheet music...
the roof is one piece, the base is one piece, and the four walls are one long piece that gets folded up.
hot glue holds it all together, and the 'hole' is drawn on with a marker.

* along with the copper, gold, and green ornaments, you'll also see  
tiny vine nests, little green flocked velvet birds, and bunches of faux roses in copper tones.
and on TOP of the tree is this little gem....
a tiny cage made from wire painted gold, sheltering a little velvet birdie.
I found the idea for the cage on a blog I just love to read:

Alicia Paulson is, in my humble opinion, one of the best craft bloggers out there!
she's inspiring and encouraging, and she's got SKILLZ.

Well, Miss Alicia used to make these little wire birdcages .
she'd attach all sorts of whimsical things to them, and she called them 'cagelets'.
I asked her if it was ok if I made one for my seminar, giving her credit, of course,
and sweet girl said 'yes, of course!'

(it's a pity she wasn't making and selling them anymore at the time,
because when I showed those 50 women how cute it looked on top of a Christmas tree,
they would have bought every last one she had.)

I still have that cagelet that I made, btw... 
it will show up in another upcoming post ... maybe I'll create a tutorial for making it.
Here's a photo of the whole vignette that I set up for the seminar...
 showing how all of the elements work together to create
an elegant yet natural decor theme for the Holidays.

1 comment:

  1. Love this, Deb! I wish I had a TENTH of your creative energy, girl!