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Wednesday, December 8, 2010


When I posted my two decorated Christmas trees, several of you asked how long it took me to decorate them and/or how in the world did I have so much energy. I have a trick I use to get my two trees decorated. My daughter and her husband and my son and his wife do not pass up a free meal. So…when I’m ready for my trees to be decorated, I invite them over for dinner. (I’ve done this since they left home, so they usually have a pretty good idea that I’m going to pull a “Tom Sawyer” and start decorating the trees and talking about the origins of each ornament and how much fun it is to decorate the trees, until they join me.) Of course, these days, their four children join in “helping” decorate, so the bottoms of the trees get very heavily decorated.

full tbl

This year, when I used my dinner trick on my children, I had fun using my pretty new toile Christmas table runner, which was a gift from my friend Susie, who also came up with the title for this post (it’s so nice to have such a kind, generous AND clever friend).

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Toile paper plates on inexpensive aluminum cookie trays carried the theme over to the grandchildren’s table.


ch tbl cloche

The dolls’ Christmas tea set under a cloche was the centerpiece for this table.

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The other trick I use is that dessert and boiled custard are not served until the trees are decorated. We turn off the lights and sip our custard and eat cookies while we admire our work. The theme for the dessert table was toy horses. The grandchildren even get to drink out of the Christmas tree stemware for this event. Maintaining control of  four grandchildren toasting one another with their stems, filled with boiled custard and cinnamon, has become more than a little problematic though!dessert table-full

When I went to the estate sale of a friend’s mother, I found this vintage decorated Christmas tree. I asked my friend if it had originally been covered with a glass dome. (I’m never sure if people who aren’t bloggers know what a cloche is. I know I didn’t until Marty told me!) My friend said that the dome had been broken somewhere along the way. Of course, being the good cloche collector that Marty has taught me to be, I had a cloche that fit the tree perfectly!

des tbl tree cloche

I have always loved Christmas tree skirts, but I usually use them on tables instead of under trees. Since our trees are real trees with large stands, the skirts do not really show up very well. I like being able to enjoy them by using them on tables. The one I used on the dessert table was one that Mother put under our tree every year when I was growing up (I did wash it!).

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In honor of Marty’s Cloche Party, I am posting photos of some of the other cloches around the house. Some of you may know that I have a large Santa collection, so you may wonder how I decided which Santa would go under glass. I based my decision on which Santa would FIT under the cloche!


See that blingy reindeer hanging from the cloche? That was on top of my package from my friend, Susie. I told you she was generous and clever.

sant-chld  mos

My Mother’s flocked tree (which is a little worse for the wear) fit under another cloche.


When my sweetheart and I first married, we couldn’t afford much in the way of Christmas décor, so when we found this miniature set of houses, trees, and caroling monks at a yard sale, we bought them. (They are also becoming a little worse for the wear! Does anybody else use that expression?)

sng monk cloche

I added the little house with the red roof to the set. It is one that I played with as a child. (it’s a lot worse for the wear!)

sng monk clsup
Can you see all of the little French people under this cloche?

They are on their way to see The Nutcracker Ballet.  (Note:  I apologize for the blurry pictures.  The dancers in the theater are moving all of the time, so it is difficult to get a clear picture of the performance. )
I love this Scrooge set that belonged to my mother. I remember when she received it as a gift from the vintage collection of an older friend of hers.

scrooge cloche

This may be cheating, but since I tied a Christmas bow on my cloche that displays my granddaddy’s and grandmother’s watches, I decided I would include it in my set of cloches for the party.
watch cloche
Whew! This ended up being a very long post. If you stayed through all of this cloche craziness, I thank you!
I am joining Tablescape Thursday at Between Naps on the Porch,


and the Christmas Cloche Party at A Stroll Thru Life.

Thank you so much Susan and Marty, for hosting these fun events!
Don’t forget about Favorite Things Saturday. I’ll have the link up on Friday evening, and it would be wonderful if you would join me. I’m so glad you came by to visit. laurie


Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

What a great and sneaky way to get the trees decorated. Love your tablescape and all your wonderful cloches. Such great collections.

Sharing with Sherri said...

LOL! I just left your last post, and couldn't believe that when I went back to my dashboard that you already had a new post up!
I knew you had to have some little helpers and I see that I was right! lol! Do you think you could send them over to help out this poor little ol slow poke?!!

Cute cloches!! That one with the little village with berries on top kinda looks like a snow globe!

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Laurie I enjoyed your story of getting your trees decorated. Lots of fun. How cute is that desert table. Love that theme and the 'giddyup'...cute. Your cloches are wonderful, gosh I better get mine done tomorrow. I am so behind on decorating!

Mellodee said...

"And Toile a Good Night!" That is wonderful!! It made me laugh out loud!! I just love a great play on words. Compliments to the author!!

I tried that trick with the tree. It only worked once! So it remains just me and the Big Guy. I love all your cloches. Simply love them! In fact, I think I want them, along with everything under them, and everything around them. I know, I know....FAT CHANCE!

Lovely as always!

Myrna said...

You crack me up! I love your post title (Toile a good nite!) What a great idea to get helpers to decorate those GORGEOUS trees!!
Love your tablescape (I'm a big fan of toile) and you have so many lovely Christmasy heirlooms on display (be still my heart!)
'Twas a pleasure to visit..Toile be seeing you!! :-) (Sorry, couldn't resist!!)

Kathleen said...

I bet they have a wonderful time decorating those trees! You have everything set up so prettily! Love the tree in the cloche, perfect!

ellen b said...

Laurie! It's always such a treat to visit here and to see all your wonderful decorations. You truly are the queen! :o)

Jewel Sauls said...

Your double trees are stunning! Love your toile tables!

Debbie said...

I love the title of this post! Tell your friend Susie that she's very clever!

I also love your idea to lure tree helpers to a decorating party. The table is great, as is the kiddie table. (I would love some of those snowman glasses. How fun!)

And I totally enjoyed the cloche tour. You have so many wonderful ones that I thought I would have trouble picking a favorite.

Then, I saw the one with the pocket watch. LOVE that the best.

As always, this post was just full of great stuff.

Mitzi said...

Those little dickens figurines you have from your Mother are Sebastian figurines. I have quite a collection of them and just love how detailed they are. I love yours. Happy Holidays.

Glenda/MidSouth said...

Yes - Got lots of "worse for wear" stuff around here. Everything looks so pretty and festive. Love how you get help decorating the trees. :)

middle child said...

The Monks, etc. are actually BETTER for the wear. Shows they are loved.

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Oh my heart went pitter patter as soon as I saw toile in your post title! Love all the pretties on your table and inside your cloches. So pretty.

Ceekay-THINKIN of HOME said...

I sent you a message in my post today....but you still win!!
Love all the old pieces passed through the family. Those are the best!!

Sarah said...

Lucky you! I could some extra hands to help around here. ;-) I'm still in progress!
This all looks very festive. ~ Sarah

a quiet life said...

so love love love your header, what a goreous room! and the table, from top to bottom is darling~

Marigene said...

What a great way to get your gorgeous trees decorated! Your table is beautiful, love red transferware. I do believe you are the queen of beautiful cloches, Laurie!

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

Oh Laurie,
You are the cleverest of most clever!
hehe. But my dear, you still put a lot of work into that tablescape and dinner! Love the toile, love the cloches, love it all!!!!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful Laurie and I love the title!

Lynn said...

Sounds like you turn tree trimming into a fun party! Everything is very pretty, lovin' the touches of plaid I see and your Mom's tree skirt! Have fun:@)

Carey said...

Everything is just beautiful. The table is awesome with the toile and I love that green toile. The cloches are just spectacular. I am a lover of anything in miniature, so you captivated me. Happy Holidays.

Marty@A Stroll Thru Life said...

Laurie, I so love all of your decorations, the double trees, the mantel and everything, however of course you know that I am totally drooling over all your cloches. You have so many beautiful miniatures for the season to put under them. What fabulous displays. Each one is my favorite. Thank you so much for always inspiring and joining the party. God Bless and Merry Christmas. Hugs, Marty

Tablescapes By Diane said...

Hi lovely lady.
I love your title(Toile a good nite} I love the way you did your Dessent Tablescape this is just
Beautiful! and you have so many lovely Christmas heirlooms you are so lucky sweet lady.~~ I wish you and your family A Merry Christmas.
I hope you can come see my Tablescapes Thanks so much.

vignette design said...

Oh Laurie, you outdid yourself! I loved seeing not only your table in toile and yes, tartan! But, your cloches too. I am loving that plaid plate with the Scrooge set. The French people are adorable, your Mother's flocked tree! There's that plaid plate again. I could go on and on. Oh, yes and the snowmen wine glasses!
xoxo ~Delores

lvroftiques said...

Oh Laurie I'm completely overwhelmed!! So many amazing details to savor! The sweet santons watching the nutcracker ballet... perfection! Where or where did you find that theatre? And the cloche with your grandfathers and grandmothers watch is lovely! The little Christmas tree that you found at the estate sale..loved it! You are so artful girlfriend. You create the most wonderful nostalgic holiday decor of anyone I can think of. Your grandchildren will be telling their children that they want Christmas to be just as it was with grandma Laurie. Tough act to follow girlfriend. Course given your energy, you'll still be doing it all!! *winks*
And where did you find toile paper plates?? I must be livin' in the wrong place. I also never noticed this before (and not for lack of trying) that my dining table is very similar to yours! What a thrill! I knew that table of mine was a goody *winks*
Oh and I tried to get my family to help me decorate and they were good for about ten minutes before they started whining about when we were gonna eat? I think they put the ornaments any ole where just get it over with. So whatever you're doing? (Or putting in that custard) It's working!Lol! Vanna

Olive said...

Clever people have clever friends! Your cloches are delightful Laurie. You really do them up right. The tree and Paris people...too much to note. Love em. merry♥O

Anonymous said...

Oh my Laurie please tell me which magic concoction you are taking to have all the energy to do all this decorating!!!

It all looks so lovely and your cloches are grand!

bee blessed

La said...

Great title. Your cloche are so sweet. I don't pass on a free meal either so if you need more help....La

Diann @ The Thrifty Groove said...

Hi Laurie!

I just LOVE to visit you at Christmas!! I am always like a litle kid gazing into the decorated store front! I am always in awe of all the wonderful and magical decorations you share with us. I love every single thing in this post!

Sonny G said...

I knew if I came here there would be some serious eye candy and sure enough , there is.. Its like visiting a fantasy land..
sooooooooooooooo pretty and just the right holiday touches..


Ribbonwood Cottage said...

Hi Laurie, one thing about twice as much work is that it is twice as beautiful. Wow one tree would take my breath away but both of them kept me from breathing altogether. Hahaha....Loved the effect. Your living room is gorgeous. I can hardly stand it!
Love the food know enticing them with it. Very smart my dear very smart!

Unknown said...

Merry Christmas Laurie!

Man! No one throws a party like you! Everything is so festive and beautiful. Your family is so lucky to have you! :) I bet everyone had a great time.


P.S. I laughed sooooo hard at your post title! :) clever!

Anonymous said...

Hi Laurie! You are the most witty and the most wonderful of everything! How great to have little helpers!! :)
I love all of your pretty decorating. The cookie table is great and I love all of your cloches. The one with the little tea set under is so cute! Love your little villages and wee wee wee folks!
And toile a good night! :) You're a hoot and I love it.
be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Susan (Between Naps On The said...

Laurie...your home is a wonderful fantasy land this time of year. If I came to visit, you'd have to throw me out...I'd never want to leave. Your trees and your tablescape are absolutely wonderful! I love the grand children's table. I could just them toasting with their custard. LOL
Merry Christmas!

Grannys Attic said...

Well where do I start? Everything is just so pretty and the way you explain it all is so funny. You amaze me. Great job! I have the same rocking horse ornaments, didn't even get them out this year. You make me want to go dig them out and use them. Oh well not enough time this year but now I will have to next year. Thanks for sharing all your treasures. Vicky

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

I love your idea of sitting back and enjoying the lights with a sweet treat.
Another friday's favorite for sure :-)

Anonymous said...

I surely would jump at the chance for a meal at that beautiful table and the chance to be sipping boiled custard and eating cookies in exchange for trimming the trees. Heck, I'd do it for scrubbing the floors!
Your cloches, your decorations, your home, all so lovely.
I'll be visiting tomorrow!

Brenda Pruitt said...

You have sooo many pretties under glass to gaze at and enjoy!

Debby@Just Breathe said...

It is all so beautiful. Where do you get your energy? I am putting out less this year and I am okay with that. I have a very hard time letting anyone else touch my tree. My daughter put out a few things last night (Jim Shore & Snow Globes) and she got mad when I tweaked them. She doesn't even want to touch the tree, she said she doesn't know how I do it. She goes crazy just doing her mini ornament tree! Love coming over to see all your pretties :)

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi Laurie...

My friend, I know that I am always saying it...but I mean it every time...I just love coming to your house at Christmas!!! I just feel like a kid in a candy shop when I start looking through all of your Christmas pretties! And...I love reading about all the special memories as well! I don't think that I have ever seen your little french people before...I love, love, LOVE that cloche! Everything just looks sooo pretty, Laurie! Ohhh...and I loved your pretty toile table too! How very sweet of your friend to gift you with that gorgeous toile table's beatiful! Love your toile Christmas dishes too! I especially enjoyed your pretty dessert table with all the different cloches and I think your mama's tree skirt is beautiful! You have so many wonderful and precious family treasures! And yes, I use the phrase..."worse for wear" too! Hehe! I think I'm a little worse for wear these days...wink!

Well dear friend, I do hope that my note finds you and all of your sweet family doing well! Sending you my very best wishes and blessings for a very Merry Christmas!

Love ya,

Entertaining Women said...

Aren't family treasures just the very best...worn out or not. I tayed through every last photo and it was well worth the 'scroll.' Thank you for sharing your charming designs. Cherry Kay